On Wednesday 8th April 2020 Fashion-Enter Ltd hosted the N17 Creative Callings employer engagement seminar: ‘How to Sell to Buyers’ with CEO Jenny Holloway (pictured right). Due to the current lockdown situation Jenny gave part 1 of her seminar online via Zoom with over thirty participants were signed in.
Jenny explained: “I have been in buying for over 20-years before starting my own business and brand. I have during that time come across incredibly impressive buyers and some that are just seriously hard work, some that are actually incapable of making a decision and others are just down right rude! Just keep remembering that time is money and you can’t afford to waste your precious time on the wrong person.
“Most buyers have challenges and you need to identify how your product, production or service is going to succeed in making that buyers life easier.
“So first of all remember that a buyer…
1. Has to buy to fulfil the employment contract and
2. They want to buy
“…but you need to prove that this is an easy process via you, that your unique product and service is superior and you are utterly reliable and good quality.
“So how are you going to get to the top of the queue with your product? When you are not priority?
The key to moving up on a buyer’s priority list are desire and ownership:
- Desire: They really need to want what you can do for them – you have to have it all and be top of their list. Remember buyers are incredibly busy so make it as easy as possible for them.
- Ownership: You need to take something that wasn’t even on their buying range plan and get them to believe deeply, “I need to do something about this!” With fast fashion this is actually easy to achieve. It’s getting noticed that counts.
Perhaps the most overlooked strategy for creating buyer desire and ownership is getting them involved in the selling process by inviting their collaboration.
Jenny discussed the importance of OTB and that is ‘Open to Buy’ and that means buying in-season. The notion of Spring / Summer and Autumn / Winter has become out-dated now with the immergence of rolling ranges and newness becoming more prevalent.
Participants were also given hand-outs available to download full of top tips, advice, buyer personalities and important information on contracts and terms & conditions and what they should include. Jenny spoke from personal experience having run her own labels and made those costly mistakes in the past. She also gave examples of current brands she has mentored and how they have managed to get their foot in the door. She also touched on social media, press and omni-channels – which will be covered more in the ‘How to Sell Your Brand’ seminar.
Feedback from the session included:
“Found out about Buyer personas and how to approach meetings.”
“This was very important at this time and also would be good whilst doing live tutorials classroom sessions whilst teaching.”
“Very informative session on how to approach a buyer, how to present yourself and how to go ahead.”
“Thanks very much for putting this on.”
The N17 Creative Callings programme targets creatives working and living within the London postcode area of N17, the two-year programme is supported by the Mayor of London and the European Union. To find out more click here.