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Business Mentor: 5 Steps to Make Your Best Choice

Business Mentor: 5 Steps to Make Your Best Choice >

Mentoring for startups: what it is, what it’s not and how it works First off, let’s start with a definition: a business mentor is a professional figure who decides to put her knowledge at the disposal of those who ask for it. A mentor acts in the best interest of a less experienced person (the mentee). To be a business mentor, it is not mandatory to be a thought leader in your field. however, it is necessary to have gained some years of expertise in a particular industry, holding one or more functions and some practical knowledge. Business mentors voluntarily share their competencies without being paid: mentoring is an outright form of volunteering, one of the best as based on well-grounded giving back to society. Business mentoring vs coaching: what’s the deal? Coaches are also another relevant figure you can turn to when looking for advice, but they are different from mentors in many respects. Indeed, business coaches are usually paid for their help. Moreover, business coaching relationships tend to last a maximum of 1 year, while collaborations between a mentor and a mentee usually last longer – at least 1 year or 2. Another key differentiator is that a coaching relationship is more formal and structured if compared to a mentorship program. While the former is articulated in a series of well-defined and coordinated meetings, where the agenda has been co-decided at the beginning with a strong focus on performance, the latter is more occasional, depending on the needs of the mentee. Additionally, the mentor usually has a more holistic, development-driven approach, thus a focus on the overall progress of the business; conversely, the coach tends to focus on performance-related aspects, with respect to which achievements are also more easily measurable. Why do you may need a business mentor for your startups? Have you ever thought about how your startup could improve with the help of a leading professional in your industry? Recent research from TechCrunch shows that startup founders who are mentored by great entrepreneurs and industry experts are 33% more likely to become top performers and achieve their business goals. There is a lot of evidence in support of mentoring programs: indeed, they improve any startup business’ profitability, boosting their chances of success and increasing their lifecycle. A business mentor can provide her mentees with business acumen, valuable information and thoughtful guidance. But the benefits for mentees do not end here. Being professionals who have usually gathered many years of experience in the field, business mentors come with their own network to share. This is a huge benefit, as you might start collaborating with some other mentors to face each and every challenge you might encounter in your business venture, and avoid failure. Another real perk of relying on a business mentor, possibly obvious but often overlooked, is the opportunity to learn from a sort of “older brother (or sister)”. Indeed, a mentor is not your parent: they will not tell you what to do and ask for your obedience. Rather, like older siblings, they will give you their advice in your best interest, hoping that you will be able to learn from their past mistakes and accomplishments. What are the benefits of mentoring, for a business mentor? On the other hand, the mentor themselves will also gain more than just “something” for their own career and personal life. Indeed, a study conducted between 2010 and 2015 at Sun Microsystems showed that those employees that engaged in mentoring activities were no less than 6 times more likely to be promoted than those who didn’t mentor, and 20% more likely to get a salary raise. Moreover, mentoring will naturally expand the knowledge of those who engage in it, giving them access also to fresh ideas, new perspectives on their industry of belonging and a chance to train their emotional intelligence – a factor that is proven to be a key differentiator in career advancement. Networking is another undeniable benefit coming from mentoring, and it is of a twofold type too. Not only the mentor will consolidate already existing professional relationships with the other mentors they already know, but they will meet other new mentors who can become important acquaintances for their own job. Want to get in touch with exciting fashion tech startups? APPLY TO BECOME ONE OF OUR MENTORS Dealing with some evidence, there is a study on chief financial officers in the USA which found that 62% of them had served as mentors. Among those who did, 38% said the greatest benefit was the opportunity to improve their leadership skills (even more than the 29% who said the top benefit was the personal satisfaction of helping someone). Indeed, mentoring also allows people working in corporate companies to develop the skills they need to conquer leadership roles. Last but not by importance, there is another benefit mentors can extract from their mentoring activities. There are many examples of mentors who have also become financially involved in the startups they have been following. Indeed, there is no rule forbidding mentors to become also investors. And actually, given the great knowledge mentors have acquired of the startup company they have been advising, it is more likely that they will know when the right time to invest comes, and may be able to enter the firm with overall very advantageous conditions. But let’s now talk about the steps that you, an experienced businessman or newbie in the industry, should take to select the right mentor for your company. 1. Fits with your business needs In a famous quote, the billionaire entrepreneur Richard Branson says that he has different mentors for each of the projects he has launched. And here we go with the first aspect to pinpoint: there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach when looking for the right mentor for your business. Therefore, before starting to reach out to potential mentor profiles, be sure that you know what it is that you want from your future collaboration. Moreover, the communication style of your mentor is also something you want to think about. People are different and express themselves in multiple ways. Try to select someone that communicates the way that best works for you and your team – you will understand that after a first chat together. 2. Belongs to your industry vertical You should look for someone who has experience in your industry vertical. Indeed, although a professional with general expertise in a given function may still turn up being useful for your business purposes, it is likely that there will be a lack of nuances in their advice. However, considering that success is your objective – not an easy one – just aim at someone that could provide you with the best possible solutions to overcome some problems she might be familiar with. 3. Has a proven track record Having a glance at the resume of your future mentor is a necessary step to take. Since the business mentor, you are going to bank on is a person you need to fully trust with their competencies, be sure that they are very good at what they do. This will be a trust booster, making the mutual collaboration hyper-productive since the beginning.  4. Fills a lack of knowledge within the company If having a different mentor for each and every activity of your startup may become too troublesome, selecting even one single fit for your business might entail some brainstorming at first. The functional area to be covered needs to be clear from the beginning, as you should think about getting on board a person that has a strong skill set in an area that is not fully covered by your team. For instance, if nobody in your startup has a digital marketing background and you feel you might need some advice in that area, you might look for someone who’s proficient in it. 5. Evaluates your ideas with honesty While it is important to have seamless communication in this two-way mentoring relationship, it is also crucial that your mentor tells you exactly what she thinks about how your business is doing and where it should improve. If the objective is bringing your business to its full potential, getting things straight and knowing the truth is exactly what you need, so as to decide where to push harder. Want to find the perfect business mentor for your startup? Go have a look at our 6-month Acceleration Program. We will give you access to 150+ selected mentors, who will share with you their vast knowledge of the Fashion Industry and will help you achieve your business goals. Would you like to become a mentor at FTA? Don’t be shy, we are waiting for you! If you are eager to share your experience and knowledge with entrepreneurs and startuppers while getting to know about the new trends in the industry before everyone else, join our Mentorship Program. You will meet many enthusiastic people who will further increase your passion for what you do every day, boosting your skills and resume! Team FTABusiness Mentor: 5 Steps to Make Your Best ChoiceNFT fever: what's the heat like in fashion?How can emerging lifestyle brands grow online?Set your Author Custom HTML Tab Content on your Profile page
Co-Branding: how to create successful brand partnerships?

Co-Branding: how to create successful brand partnerships? >

Co-branding, brand partnerships, collaborations: first of all, what’s this all about? Our article will give you an in-depth look at the topic from a fashion perspective, suggesting ways to exploit its full potential. What is a brand partnership? A brand partnership is the alliance of two different companies, that get together to form and sell a new product indicative of both their identities. It can be a fast and cost-effective way of boosting brand awareness and breaking into new markets, but only if it’s a win-win strategy for both the brands involved. How to develop the right co-branding strategy? The North Face x Gucci (2020) Credits: #TheNorthFacexGucci Campaign First of all, you need to identify a partner. You might already have someone in mind, maybe a firm in your industry or even in a completely different market. In any case, an effective way to decide is to create a pretty wide list of brands that you would be interested in. To find the perfect fit, the companies’ cultures have to match so that the partnership can work and enhance your brand’s reputation and credibility. An in-depth analysis should follow so that you will be able to discard all the non-fitting brands. Before contacting the interesting ones, do a lot of research using tools like Alexa.com or Buzzsumo.com, subscribe to your prospects newsletter and check their social media profiles. Learn everything you can about the target companies and their audience. Then, consider your goals: how would it all fit in your strategy? For a co-branding strategy to be effective, the goals of the campaign need to be established beforehand. This kind of partnership can work for different objectives: building a different brand image that may be more appealing to customers, enhancing the user experience in a new way or expanding the customer base, you choose. Once the strategic goals are defined, move on to define the marketing mix: which one of your products makes the foremost sense to co-brand, and which distribution channels work best for you? Also, make sure that co-branding won’t damage sales on your product core line. The Supreme and Louis Vuitton Collab (2017) Credits: The Cut Partnerships are key to revenue growth: tactics to make it happen. As brand partnerships become increasingly crucial to revenue growth, organizations must develop an impeccable operational strategy. This way, it’s possible to leverage the correct tools to meet tactical best practices to ensure partnership success. Partnerships take many shapes. Recently, new models are more focused on referrals, as new forms of transactions and influence have come out. Think of social influencers, affiliates marketing, ambassadors, and media houses that are uniquely positioned to reach a brand’s target audience in the moment of need. These partners can boost not only awareness but also revenues for a brand through referral traffic (i.e. the traffic coming from the partner’s website). According to recent research brought out by Forrester, and conducted among the 450+ companies surveyed from the US, EMEA, and APAC, over half of them (52%) got more than 20% of their revenues from co-brandings and brand partnerships channels in the past 5 years. On average, partners contribute to an average of 23% of the overall company revenues. What are the benefits of a co-branding strategy? More specifically, when a brand partnership is truly effective, brands can achieve the following: Build Trust: a win-win situation for all parties involved. When two or more reputable brands partner with one another, that’s showing the consumer that the brand is worthy of their trust. If the consumer trusts the brand you are partnering with and has had a good experience with the company, they will expect to have a positive experience with your brand as well. Add Value: something unique for the customer. A well-integrated brand partnership and co-branding project adds intrinsic value to the product or service that each of the companies involved offers natively. When the two brands are working together, they bring a surplus and something unique to the customer. Generate Buzz: the final frontier of a well-executed partnership? When two different companies partner, also in fashion, there’s usually some noise surrounding the operation. Indeed, consumers coming from both brands’ channels may be excited about the product. This is why a brand partnership is a valuable opportunity either for public relations events or increased media exposure. Persol x JW Anderson (2021) Credits: www.jwanderson.com/us/persolxjwanderson Some relevant co-branding examples: brace yourself! The perfect example of a good brand partnership is the 2016 Kenzo X H&M capsule collection. The French brand forged a bond with a new generation of potential consumers while H&M supported their brand positioning as a trendy fashion destination: a win-win. Another great example of co-branding is the 2018 co-branding campaign between Redbull and GoPro called Stratos. For this occasion, athlete Felix Baumgartner jumped from a space pod 24 miles above Earth’s surface, setting also a world record and representing accurately the two brands’ values and images. Another partnership worth mentioning is the one between Dunkin’ Donuts and Waze, launching the “Order Ahead” feature. Dunkin’ Donuts customers who commute every day can use Waze, the real-time crowdsourced traffic and navigation app, to save time both on the roads and at Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants. In fact, the commuters can order directly through Waze, saving time in line. Waze X Dunkin’ Donuts Credits: Influenster One of the most famous co-branding campaigns is Yeezy, the partnership between Adidas and Kanye West. The combination of Kanye’s personal brand and Adidas’ growing streetwear segment has made for robust company earnings and brand growth since it was introduced.  Kanye’s celebrity appeal benefits Adidas by creating buzz around its apparel collections. In turn, the athletic-wear brand gives Kanye a well-established platform to build his high-end clothing line. Arguably, the strongest feature of Yeezy is its exclusivity: Kanye’s fame, scarcity of drops, and the high price tag make the lucky few to own Yeezy sneakers feel a little famous by association. Adidas Yeezy Boost 700 Wave Runner Credits: Highsnobiety.com On the other hand, Adidas currently operates its Yeezy Supply e-commerce site where sneakers are released, lending its operational know-how to get shoes to shoppers who rush for the latest styles. According to Bloomberg, sales for Yeezy’s Adidas sneakers remained resilient through the pandemic, growing 31% to nearly $1.7 billion in annual revenue last year and netting Yeezy $191 million in royalties. How to manage, track and measure brand partnerships In order to get the most out of a brand partnership, it is crucial to track, review and optimise the campaigns. Without monitoring the efforts and assessing the outcomes, it’s harder to judge if the co-branding strategy has been beneficial or not. With this in mind, setting actionable metrics and sharing them with the partner is of the utmost importance. Not only so to measure the success of the campaign, but also to work towards the same goals. Some of the relevant KPIs are the following: Cost per lead (CPL) or cost per action (CPA)Incremental revenueReturn on Investment (ROI)Average Order Value (AOV) Remember, when analyzing the positive or negative results of the brand-to-brand campaign, one must compare each metric with previous campaigns and make adjustments accordingly. So, why co-branding is a good idea for a brand? Oreo by Chiara Ferragni (2020) Credits: www.theblondesalad.com When doing brand partnerships, companies can share the risks and benefits coming from more available financial resources. Co-branding opportunities may support the exclusive launch of a new product, splitting the expenses together with your partner. At the same time, you’ll gain visibility and reach a new audience. When two brands come together to form a co-branding partnership, they are automatically given the opportunity to gain the interest of each other’s market. Last but not least, co-branding can help to legitimise your startup’s presence on the market. The customers who are already in love with one brand will automatically trust the newly introduced product. Team FTABusiness Mentor: 5 Steps to Make Your Best ChoiceNFT fever: what's the heat like in fashion?How can emerging lifestyle brands grow online?Set your Author Custom HTML Tab Content on your Profile page
NFT fever: what's the heat like in fashion?

NFT fever: what's the heat like in fashion? >

The fashion industry has historically been in the front rows of innovation, from the invention of the mechanical loom of the first Industrial Revolution in the 18th century to the newest AR technologies employed in virtual fitting rooms. Yet, there is still some uncertainty about which could be the most successful use of an increasingly renowned technology, the non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Defining NFTs: the nature of “non-fungible tokens“ NFTs are digital coins, non-replicable and non-exchangeable, whose existence is registered in a digital ledger through the use of blockchain technology. Despite the fact that startups like the Sydney-based Neuno are striving to make payments by credit card viable for this type of purchase, NFTs can nowadays only be exchanged via cryptocurrencies like Bitcoins or Ethereum. However, NFTs are not bargaining chips per se: they are a digital certificate, unique and personal, that guarantees the authenticity of a good, which can be either entirely digital or with a physical counterpart. Having bought an NFT allows one to have the exclusive ownership of an inimitable and iconic object, not only in the immaterial world of the Internet, but also in real life. Indeed, given the pervasiveness of the digital world in our everyday lives, even owning a sheer digital asset can be equated to having something concrete on your hands. The first NFT ever was “minted” in 2014, based on the unprecedented intuition of Kevin McCoy. In the beginning, nobody was understanding what the visionary American artist was saying when he had the idea of combining art and blockchain technology together. The NFT he created was the art piece “Quantum”, which was auctioned at Sotheby, a generative artwork entirely made with code that automatically permeates into new forms that are not determined at the outset. Staying faithful to their nature, NFTs have thus boomed in the art world at first, where impressive prices were paid for digital artworks such as the American artist Beeple’s “Everydays: The First 5000 Days”. The masterpiece was bought last March for the record price of $69,3 million by the Singapore-based crypto entrepreneur who goes by the pseudonym MetaKovan. He released an interview to the New York Times stating that he felt he made a real bargain, if not a cash grab, since he was planning on reselling single parts of the artwork, almost certainly realizing great capital gains. Perks and downsides of NFTs And here we go with the first truly disruptive aspect of NFTs: this trading option allows creators to receive a percentage of each subsequent sale of the NFT they realized, getting a percentage on each transaction. So, for instance, in case MetaKovan decided to sell single parts of Beeple’s work, a percentage of the countervalue would go to the artist. Indeed, if the artist, brand or designer registered copyright, they will receive for each transaction royalties – typically 10 percent – when the product is sold in the secondary market. This would solve some of the problems that have characterized the resale market for decades, having great implications for the world of creative people, ranging from musicians to photographers and, of course, artists, as it represents an impenetrable way of protecting intellectual property which relies on ciphered codes and encryptions. Talking about the “property” side of it all, it is undeniable that another great perk of NFTs is that they endow buyers with the sense of owning a digital asset, of being the unique possessor of a good, and this concept has the potential to significantly close the gap between the virtual and the physical world. This could also possibly entice more businesses heavily dependent on “material” components (i.e. textures, fibres and other sensorial aspects), like those belonging to the fashion industry, to raise the stakes of their digital presence. From art to sports & lifestyle to fashion Taking off from the art world, NFTs have found thriving applications in other dimensions. In music, for instance, the band Kings of Leon sold their latest album via NFTs and made more than $2 million from the sales, Grimes sold 10 digital works on NFT marketplace Nifty Gateway for nearly $6 million in March 2021. A unique version of the Nyan Cat, a flying cartoon that first went viral on YouTube about ten years ago, sold for $580,000 in February 2021. In the sports dimension, the NBA has been the most attractive target as of now for NFTs. Indeed, basketball fans can check out NBA Top Shot, a marketplace stemming from the partnership between NBA and blockchain company Dapper Labs where a LeBron James video of a dunk recently sold for $208,000. Getting closer to the fashion world, two interesting examples feature the model and digital activist Emily Ratajkowski. Building on the NFTs’ momentum, she advocated for regaining ownership of her own image: in May 2021, the provocative “Buying Myself Back: a Model for Redistribution” was auctioned by Christie’s. This NFT was created as a protest of the model against the undue appropriation of other people’s image; and again, here we go with the authenticity- and originality-shaped essence of NFTs, pivotal in their present and future success. Model and digital activist Emily Ratajkowski, reclaiming authority over her own image. Her NFT was auctioned by Christie’s last May, 2021. Credits to: thecut.com Another emblematic example is the photographic legacy of Karl Lagerfeld, the iconic creative director of Chanel and Fendi, which has been registered on the Lukso blockchain. For the sake of clarity, three important aspects need to be set out: the first one is that whoever is going to buy the NFT will be the legitimate owner of the digital asset; secondly, the digital asset is unique and inimitable; and thirdly, if to be resold, the buyer will only get a share of the resell price, since a fixed quota will be devolved to the original creator. Moments of Gucci’s first NFT ever, a fashion film co-directed by Gucci’s creative director, Alessandro Michele. Auctioned at Christie’s since May, 2021. Credits to: highsnobiety.com and hypebeast.com Currently, the NFT trend is representing physical assets in the digital world. For some, the exciting future of NFT is all digital. In the fashion realm, designers will be able to give free rein to creativity and produce digitally something that is not feasible materially. In the words of Amber Jae Slooten, co-founder of The Fabricant, “brands [should not] simply copy their physical items,” she says. “I would encourage them to go beyond their physical reality. For instance, we designed one shoe that was a flaming shoe. You can create all kinds of digital couture looks that could never exist in real life.” But how is the fashion industry currently reacting to this new technological as well as conceptual trend? The first blatant example of the great potential NFTs have in the world of fashion is testified by the recent collaboration between the 18-year-old designer Fewocious and the virtual sneaker brand RTFKT Studios, who sold the whole sneaker drop in seven minutes generating $3.1 million gain. There are many other interesting uses which have already been implemented by brands like Louis Vuitton and Nike. As a matter of fact, LV is already benefitting from NFTs to track the provenance of luxury goods, while the latter used this avant-garde technology to connect real-world shoes with their digital edition. 18-year-old designer Fewocious on the left. On the right, his NFT sneakers in partnership with RTFKT Studios. Alternative uses complementing existing trends There are other possible uses of NFTs suggested by celebrity art dealer, manager and founder of ArtGrails NFTs’ marketplace Avery Andon. He told Glossy Fashion Magazine that Prada could for instance embed an NFT in every physical product it sells as well as the NFT representing a ticket to a Prada fashion show for a selected drop of shoes. Moreover, NFTs could also authenticate high-value goods and prevent counterfeits from going off, as they provide a great way to block things like massive counterfeiting attacks. Again, Avery said that by adding an NFT to every watch you sell it would be possible to track them all perfectly and be in full control of both the way they are sold and who the buyer is. NFTs may also represent a viable complementary feature for emerging or already well-established trends. For instance, NFTs could be a great ally of luxury brands in second-hand markets of pre-loved items: issuing an NFT every time a luxury item is sold would be a great way of still providing the qualities of authenticity and exclusivity so essential to high-end brands. Concerning emerging trends, NFTs could be a valid resource in the increasingly popular combo of fashion brands and gaming, as well as AR fashion. Indeed, luxury brands could expand their revenue stream by creating unique and non-replicable skins for video games, or could embed in each physical product sold in their brick-and-mortar stores an NFT, giving access to the digital dimension of that very product. This would on the one hand increase affluence to flagship stores, and on the other could make more headway for fashion brands in the virtual space avoiding the risk of dilution – again, due to the exclusivity and authenticity connected to each NFT issued. NFTs would also go perfectly with the “metaverse”, a virtual world where people interact with each other through avatars, a trend that has seen a great surge throughout 2021, as noted by Martha Bennett, Forrester’s VP. All in all, The Business of Fashion noted that the greatest untapped potential is still anchored to the physical world when it comes to fashion. A real-life example of this could be Clothia, an online retailer in the accessible luxury space which is currently auctioning NFT dresses. The winning bidders will receive the corresponding real-life dresses, and both the NFTs and the physical garments are one of a kind according to Clothia CEO Elena Silenok. Equity value and overpricing Over centuries, people have given physical objects a value that can go far beyond their intrinsic worth. For instance, the price of a famous painter’s artwork immeasurably outweighs the costs of the oil and canvas used, and this is even more evident as the artist’s reputation and popularity increase. Notably, the same applies to the fashion industry with garments and accessories. Fashion is the way human beings portray themselves to the outside world, and fashion objects are the means through which they primarily express their own identity. Collecting items that enable you to build your own identity, whether you are going to wear them or not, is a primary human tendency. Given the prominence the digital world has acquired in our daily lives, from social media to metaverse and augmented reality, this natural aptitude has progressively shifted the focus also on digital stockpiling. But many complain about NFTs being too expensive, given that they lack physical substance. “People are still not used to digital goods [coming] with a certain price,” says Gala Marija Vrbanic, co-founder of Tribute. “This is mostly because they can’t touch or experience those pieces in the real world, so they don’t feel like they own them. NFTs have managed to succeed in giving the people this ownership feeling.” Not surprisingly, the nature of NFT perfectly matches the world of collectors. The latest NFT auctions witnessed a huge amount of money bid, which for some may seem absurd. On the contrary, those who have been in the market for years, like collectors, seek exclusivity and uniqueness. NFTs offer exactly these qualities, representing the quintessence of luxury being certifiable, authentic, unique and non-replicable. Some of the biggest fashion collectors are sneaker-enthusiasts: NFTs may easily enter this market since the concept behind them is not at all far from how collecting these items is currently perceived. Most “sneakerheads” purchase the shoes exclusively to display or hold on to them waiting for future price appreciation. It is already considered a long-term investment. NFT pollution rate: what’s the sustainability trade-off? For some, the evolution of fashion into the digital world is an opportunity to explore new and different paths, diverting from the extremely polluting environment that characterizes the industry. In fact, brands tend to overproduce, especially in the fast fashion segment, in order to meet the quickly changing demand and tastes of customers. As the customer base has become more aware of this problem over the years, also brands established plans to become more sustainable and reduce their carbon footprint. Although NFTs could provide several benefits to brands, they are not cost-free. In particular, NFTs are traded using cryptocurrencies like Ethereum and Bitcoin, which are known to be environmentally costly. To work, cryptocurrencies are “mined” by computers doing power-intensive calculations to verify each part of the blockchain. Researchers showed that the “mining” process of Bitcoin alone consumes per year as much energy as Argentina. NFTs themselves are created through a process called “proof-of-work” (PoW) based on Ethereum blockchain, which as we have seen necessitates a large amount of processing machines. Many well-established fashion brands have sustainability as one of their core values. Those very brands, however, are the ones hopping on the new NFT trend, trying to appeal to a new, young, tech-savvy customer base. The continuous need to innovate and to be forward-looking may, in the case of NFT, not be fully compatible with the brands sustainability objectives. Furthermore, they might incur the risk of greenwashing, and this could damage the reputation brands have built over the years. While some NFT artists committed to carbon offsets, critics say that the problem is not finding a sustainable way but the NFT itself. In order to overcome the issue, a new process called “proof-of-stake” (PoS) was developed, and it requires significantly less energy to verify the blockchain. Immediate feedback showed that NFTs could not be verified the same way, slowing down the shifting process towards this alternative. Market dimension and currency volatility Indeed, many fashion brands are still waiting before fully buying into NFTs, and this is not only connected to the complexities related to the sustainable side of the deal. Another tough aspect is represented by the volatility of cryptocurrencies, which, without a doubt, is strongly linked to NFTs’ potential instability. Indeed, if in 2020 the overall value of the NFT market has soared by 299 percent according to Atelier BNP Paribas and Nonfungible.com. However, 2021 has seen a plunge in the overall value of sales: from May 3, 2021, to last June 4, sales decreased by over 90 percent. The fact that NFTs’ market transactions tend to fluctuate a lot over time, along with the very volatile currencies exchanges rely on, makes it crystal clear that NFTs are still far from being brands’ first option in terms of their productive investments. Fashion brands, like any other business, need stability in their profits as well as the reasonable assurance that this is not only a temporary fad. Only time will prove it. Come and visit our blog for further information on how the world of digital fashion is evolving. Exciting new reports and cutting-edge contents are coming up! Team FTABusiness Mentor: 5 Steps to Make Your Best ChoiceNFT fever: what's the heat like in fashion?How can emerging lifestyle brands grow online?Set your Author Custom HTML Tab Content on your Profile page
How can emerging lifestyle brands grow online?

How can emerging lifestyle brands grow online? >

In the last year, Italian shopping has shifted more and more online, making this country one of the fastest growing eCommerce economies in Western Europe, not to mention how the 2020 pandemic gave a boost to this expanding sector; in fact, growth rates of online sales in Italy have increased by 37% in the last year only. According to a recent report by Osservatori.net, the most purchased categories online are clothing (+22%) and furnishing and home-living (+32%), which represent the very best sectors of the made in Italy. In this scenario, the first companies to sell online were the largest, with digital structures already underway. What is today’s perspective of online growth for small brands? Nonetheless, this growth does not come without challenges, especially concerning how to offer a shopping experience as good as the brick and mortar one customers are now accustomed to.  From the consumer’s point of view then, buying a shirt or a pair of shoes online is easier if you already know the brand, while purchasing from emerging brands, start-ups, artisans, and independent entrepreneurs may be harder without the possibility of touching and trying on the garments. This and many other issues must not be underestimated, since opening an e-commerce involves investments, budgets, and skills that are not always within the reach. What many that decide to start their own e-commerce do not consider is that, if the advantage of proprietary website is the high possibility of customization, however, it is also very hard to understand how to get discovered by customers in a very dense and competitive environment, like ecommerce is. Therefore, investments are needed, such as SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, or PPC (Pay Per Click) advertising, to generate traffic. How can brands optimize their online presence effectively? As for the SEO, we refer to the process of improving your website to improve its relevance in search engine research. To understand the principles of Search Engine Optimization, one needs a good understanding the algorithms behind search engines like Google, that are structured to provide the best results to the user query. The Pay-Per-Click, on the other hand, is a model of internet marketing in which advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked. Tools such as Google Ads or Facebook Ads can help you build a well-targeted advertising campaign, but if used with some expertise.  But an e-commerce is not only a the website. Communication on social media, for example, is fundamental to start building a community of users and, mostly, to gain the so much coveted social proof a young company needs. Considering all these evaluations, e-commerce is a highly potential tool, if well used. A good product is not enough in this landscape, and efforts in advertising and social media presence are essential. It is possible for young company to master these tools. In our digitized world, many companies like Google and Facebook are opening their treasure chests and turning their expertise in digital academies open and free (for the most part) to everyone curious and willing to learn. Should brands create a great website or register to marketplaces? But this path is not for everyone, of course. A small business or an independent brand can look out for alternatives, such as marketplaces. An online marketplace is a platform on which merchants can sell and invoice directly to customers. Comparable to a kind of online shopping center, the customer enters the online marketplace in search of a product and also comes into contact with a range of brands, both well-known and new. The online marketplace, like any distribution channel, can offer several advantages to small businesses, and strengthen e-commerce itself. In fact, it can help reach a wider variety of customers, not to mention that being on a well rated marketplace can give the advantage of trust to a small brand. How to choose the right marketplace for your brand? Enter Mooza. As in the real world, for Italian fashion and design brands, the choice of a store opening must be consistent with the positioning of the brand. Generalist marketplaces, with an undifferentiated offer of thousands of products, may not be the optimum solution for those brands who want to grow their customer base by highlighting their talent and quality of manufacturing. One example of platform dedicated exclusively to the Italian lifestyle is Mooza that means inspiration, a marketplace where creative, independent designers, crafters, but also vintage collectors and unconventional shops can easily access online and get visibility without supporting start-up costs, respecting the only rule of authenticity. Strictly Italian lifestyle and quality craftsmanship. Mooza marketplace, already a community of more than 800 sellers coming from all over Italy, is the new destination for people looking for good quality fashion and original designs at affordable prices. A response to generalist platforms with thousands of undifferentiated products and to the e-commerce of the big brands. In fact, the value at the basis of Mooza is: defending the uniqueness of artisans, independent designers and small and medium-sized local companies for a better economy. Mooza supports «the small ones» and independent brands giving the opportunity to open a shop for free online and at the same time the opportunity to learn and grow. Among the benefits for sellers there are: Easy access procedureNo initial or fixed costsNo marketing investment required & dedicated supportSecure and immediate payments directly from customers with a low commission Among the services created specifically for the growth of craft brands was also launched the Mooza Academy, which houses articles and advice on the most useful topics for small businesses and crafters: e-commerce, trends, marketing, but also inspiring articles, a collection of original stories from artisans and brands of Mooza community. A new chance, therefore, even for small companies to launch into digital without risks and with the support of a community. If you need more information about it, just get in touch. 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