Before I rebranded The Fashion Advocate as a mentoring business to help ethical and sustainable fashion brands thrive and increase their positive environmental impact, I ran The Fashion Advocate as an online store and it was one of Australia’s largest for ethical and sustainable fashion. In all my years running The Fashion Advocate and in all my years being so entrenched in the industry, I was able to work closely and personally with hundreds of fashion labels, creative start-ups, and designers – and I saw a lot.
I saw a lot of really talented designers carve out really successful careers for themselves. I saw a lot of incredibly sustainable labels create incredibly positive impacts. I saw a lot of really good things in the fashion industry, but I also saw a lot of failure, waste, and missed opportunities.
I watched countless labels spend tens of thousands of dollars launching their brands, pouring their hearts and souls into their collections, while they neglected the strategic side of business and growth. I saw labels getting credit cards to pay for advertising before they had tried free organic growth solutions to increase their sales. I saw founders hiring teams of staff when they weren’t paying themselves a wage because they thought more staff meant more sales. I saw a lot of fashion businesses open and close and I saw a lot of mistakes made by a lot of labels, but the biggest mistake I saw – was when brands jumped the gun on PR too early.
There is a right time and a wrong time to start PR for your fashion business. PR is not a solution to low sales. PR is not a solution to slow growth. PR is not a solution to bad business.
PR is an amplifier.
PR turns good fashion brands into great fashion brands.
It’s a lever, not a lifeline.
If you’re running an ethical, sustainable, circular or slow fashion business and you jump the gun on PR at the wrong time when you’re not actually ready, you drive thousands of potential customers to your website only to lose those customers, and those customers never come back.
Because if you can’t handle 100 orders right now, you’re not ready for PR. If you still have issues in your supply chain to sort out, you’re not ready for PR. If you’re getting returns on a regular basis, you’re not ready for PR.
You don’t start PR to make sales – you make lots of sales and grow a good brand to earn PR.
PR and press features have to happen at the right time when you’re ready. It’s not something you want to rush because PR can be incredibly powerful for your brand, but if you do it at the wrong time, it can be incredibly damaging to your brand.
So how do you know you’re ready for PR? You watch my Fashion PR and Press Online Masterclass Course and you lay good fashion business foundations.