Recently, I embarked on a tour of the Nigerian fashion industry, collaborating with prominent brands to gain insights into the true workings of running a successful fashion brand. Prior to this endeavour, I managed my own fashion house, realizing that there was untapped potential in the business if only I could master the art of proper management. Thus, I made the decision to temporarily close my fashion house and set out on a quest for knowledge.

The typical scenario would unfold when a client walked into the store: they would make inquiries, we would engage in conversations, negotiate prices, and sometimes, it would lead to a happy ending where the client proceeded to have a dress made. However, there were other times when customers would say, “I’ll get back to you,” leaving things uncertain.

Does this sound familiar to you?

Photo by Ron Lach

Now, let me share what I’ve learned through my experiences and how surprisingly simple it is that the most basic elements often hold the key to success, even though they are often overlooked and underestimated.

The fundamental laws of life should apply universally for any endeavour to achieve success, much like the unwavering truth that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west each day. Just as we can depend on this natural occurrence, should we not also adhere to the law of routine or a reliable process flow in all our pursuits?

Reliable process flows are the backbone of big brands’ success. It’s not that they have a process flow because they are big; rather, they have become big brands because they diligently followed the law of process.

Now, let’s circle back to my own ‘process flow’ and learn from it to achieve similar accomplishments.

  • A client enters the store
Photo by Ron Lach

Even with an online presence, many of my customers lacked sufficient knowledge about my business until they physically visited my space. Interestingly, the majority of my clients discovered me through the Internet.

  •  Inquires about the products/services

There is no fixed script to follow, as the prices of the outfits could vary depending on the specific “dressing” or preferences of the client making the inquiry.

  • Fulfilling conclusion (dresses are made)

Regrettably, there was no systematic documentation of clients to ensure their retention. For instance, I didn’t maintain a pool of client contact numbers to solicit feedback or follow-up. Consequently, I found myself consistently in search of new clients, without effectively nurturing and retaining the existing ones.

Photo by Ron Lach 
  • Regarding the “I’ll get back to you” endings

There was no established process flow for documenting clients who responded this way, nor was there a system for presenting them with alternative offers or follow-up communication.

Now, let’s explore what can be done better.

In order to be more effective, my Instagram bio should contain genuinely useful information for my potential customers. By following this formula.

1. I can create a compelling bio that resonates with my audience:

a. What I do.
b. Who do I do it for?
c. A call to action.

For example: “If you appreciate exquisite evening wear and you’re a curvy woman, you’ve come to the right place! I specialize in crafting the finest designs for curvy women. Got an upcoming event? Click here to book an appointment, chat, or place an order for your perfect outfit!” (insert the desired action).

By employing this approach, my Instagram bio can better engage my target clients and encourage them to take action.

2. My pricing will be determined by the genuine needs of my business, taking into account factors such as bills, rent, operating costs, and other essential expenses. It will not be solely influenced by the appearance or characteristics of the client, as such a pricing model is not sustainable for the growth and success of my business.

3. I will ensure that all terms and conditions of working with my fashion brand are clearly spelt out and prominently displayed where clients can easily access them. This proactive approach aims to prevent any unnecessary communication waste and ensures transparency and clarity in our business interactions.

4. Every service provided must have a well-defined customer path that is easily understandable and repeatable. This approach ensures consistency and efficiency in our services, allowing us to deliver a high-quality experience to our customers consistently.

Once you can replicate this process, you will not only achieve a seamless and delightful experience for your clients, but you will also witness an increase in sales due to the perceived value you have cultivated around your fashion brand. Consistency in delivering a remarkable customer journey enhances your brand’s reputation and ultimately leads to greater success in the market.