There are a number of well-known brands which surprisingly started life as small, so-called bedroom brands. What they may lack in experience in the retail industry and the ins and outs of production and design they make up for in the understanding of what works for their target audience, how to market to them, and in a number of cases are taking on the retail giants at their own game and succeeding.
Juls Dawson – Just Consultancies co-founder explains:
“The 16-to-24-year-old consumer is heavily influenced by social channels, such as Instagram, and other stimuli, like reality TV stars. These brands are championed by and – in some cases – even owned by these stars”.
With this high-profile approach using well-known celebrities and key influencers to endorse the brands it wasn’t going to be long before the big high street retailers jumped on the bandwagon with the likes of Asos, Topman and River Island now working with more and more “bedroom” brands.
Juls Dawson explains further:
“Retailers have jumped all over this trend and are further feeding the demand for this new genre. The independents in the young fashion market have also lapped up young consumers’ insatiable appetite for these brands”.
From humble beginnings, studying graphic design at De Montfort University, Liam Green, founder of Hype, which is now a recognisable brand with 1250 Stockist in the UK and a number of collaborations with huge brands such as Coca-Cola and Star Wars with Net sales for 2017 of £11m
By starting off small and building the brand in a manageable way has meant that Liam who started off selling branded lighters, is now an established brand which has a huge social media following and has the ability to react quickly to the ever-changing nature of the fashion industry.
“There was never any massive plan to become a fully-fledged brand – we were just having fun. We started by making lighters because that’s all we could afford,”
“We’ve found that most big labels have long lead times and are working in quite a dated way. The way Hype is structured means we work mostly out of season. We can react to the market. Bigger brands often come with bigger teams and more red tape, whereas we can be really agile.”
Another big name that has rapidly grown with the help of social media and a number of key influencers is Gym King – founded by personal trainer Jay Parker in 2015 the brand now has a turnover of £10.5m from Jan16 – Jun17.
Jay who was selling the brand from the back of his car three years ago at the gym which he worked at, is now selling his range to more than 300 retailers globally. This has all been down to the use of social media and working with well-known celebrities which the target audience associate with such as Love Island’s Alex Bowen and Big Brother’s Alex Cannon.
Jay goes on to explain:
“Social media is the driving force behind our marketing strategy,” says Parker. “We have a strong presence and the number of bloggers, celebrities and influencers in the sector continues to grow, as does the number of our followers [221,000 on Instagram at the time of writing]. While many brands use social channels to showcase their product, their relationship [with followers] is purely commercial. Ours goes way beyond that – it’s personal.”
Find out more about Gym King here: https://thegymking.com/
The core to the success of almost all successful bedroom brands is being able to know your audience, what will sell and having the ability to market to them in a meaningful manner. On top of this being able to work with suppliers who can offer quick turnarounds, low minimum order quantities and an understanding to start up brands all helps in the building of a brand that in time could become the next Hype, Gym King or Fresh Ego.
The saying “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know” is probably the most relevant statement when it comes to bedroom brands. You don’t have to have that well-known reality star in your phone book, but having a good insight into your audience and knowing what sells to them is probably the single biggest thing that will make or break your brand.
From the off SL Black Label was set up specifically to cater for the small start-up brands. With our low minimum orders for our range of stocked headwear starting from only 50pcs and the ability to offer a wide range of branding techniques directly in the UK – you can have a range of caps ready to sell in less than 3 weeks.
It doesn’t stop there, with our knowledge and working relationship with a number of high street fashion retailers we know what styles are popular and hold stock of the latest fashion inspired designs such as the Dad caps, Truckers and more recently a range of headwear using less know fabrics such as faux suede and oiled cotton.
Should your brand be looking for something to really set yourself apart from all the other brands we also offer a fully bespoke service, again with relatively low minimum orders of 144pcs and the ability to create a truly unique cap.
Well, its perfectly achievable with a bit of hard work, a good knowledge of your audience and our helpful guide.
In this guide, we explain the 3 simple steps to making £13k just by selling headwear. In each step we break down the costs and what you could feasibly sell the caps for. All you need to do is come up with a great design and build on your social media and marketing skills. Just take a look at some of the brands mentioned in this blog for inspiration, check out their social media channels and see how they have started off in a bedroom and are now globally recognised brands.