Sophie Doyle took a big leap in 2014, leaving her corporate role with L’Oreal, with the idea of starting her own e-commerce venture; within a year she founded her online fashion store, The Fable, and it all started from her bedroom.
Launching online (thefable.com.au) in October 2015, The Fable sells women’s silk shirts. Within its first month of trading, The Fable secured 100 orders, initially from Sophie’s family and friends, but this quickly grew to 400 within the next six months.
Today, the fashion label produces more than 500 shirts a month generating approximately $42,000 of monthly sales revenue to a growing customer base, and is set to make $500,000 in the next 12-months. Although it’s still relatively small, Doyle says the company is tracking steady growth.
Starting The Fable a small budget and within the confines of her home, Doyle shares her top tips on how to start a fashion online business from your bedroom.
1. Start With Influencers
“When starting a fashion business from scratch and on a budget, it can be difficult to know where to start with regard to marketing. In the world of e-commerce there are a million ways you can market a business, but many avenues are expensive and require specific skills for effective execution. A great way to launch a fashion start-up is to use influencers to promote your product. In addition to spreading word of your new brand, influencers will produce content you can use on your own social channels and website, providing important brand validation. I started my business The Fable with a small budget, and working with influencers helped me secure more than 400 orders over a six-month period and gain a solid customer base that has continued to grow.”
2. Outsource Smartly
“When you decide to explore building awareness of your brand through Facebook and Google, employing an expert is the best way to go. Learning how to master these two platforms is like learning another language. The right expert can ensure that you spend your market budget in the most effective and results-driven way possible.”
3. Don’t Reinvent the Wheel
“Watch successful brands in the same market as you. Study their websites, advertisements, social media and sign up to their email list. Look for trends across a number of brands and then take the learnings and apply them. Successful brands haven’t gotten that way by doing the wrong thing. Learning from them can help you avoid mistakes and move in the right direction as quickly as possible.”