Pretty much every millennial has heard of Nasty Gal, and if they haven’t, they have probably been living under a rock for the past couple of years. If that’s you, the brief story behind the brand is that Sophie Amoruso, the founder, dropped out of college and began selling vintage items out of her apartment online. That little company is now worth more than $240 million and has worldwide success.
There is an awful lot that we can learn from Sophie and her global cultural brand about starting up a small business from the comfort of your own home and taking it worldwide, no matter what industry you are starting out in. If you want to get some tips and learn from her success, read on!
1. It is possible
Forst of all, you need the belief that it is possible. You need a budget, a good idea for a brand, you need a sharp brand image, and you need products that the consumer market needs. Once you have those in place, you need an active marketing campaign to make people aware of who you are and what you can give them. Of course, as your brand takes off, you will need to increase your budget – you may find that if you are successful, working from your bedroom is no longer possible. You may want to check out potential premises, and the costs of things like fuel for transporting goods nationally and internationally – New Era Fuels can give you a quote on this. However, to begin with, belief and ideas can be enough. Sophie knew what she wanted – a brand run by the very sort of woman she was selling to – and that belief has helped her to get to where she is now.
2. Have a great website
We are assuming that you are beginning with a digital store rather than a physical store – but if you do start with a physical one, you need to get your foot in the e-commerce side, especially if you want to go global. Your website needs to be sharp and professional. These days, whatever industry you are in, you will have countless competitors, and if they have a better site than you, they are going to win the custom. Make sure it is fully responsive, easy to use and that it has plenty of large, clear photos to demonstrate the product at it’s very best.
3. Be Social
In a world where most of the population will be on at least one social media network, you need to be social and engaging. Come up with a hashtag that is unique and memorable and encourage followers and customers to use it to share their thoughts and purchases. If they share a picture of them using the product, repost it (with permission) to show that you love the feedback and care about your customers. Respond to comments and messages as quickly as possible, whether they are positive or negative – remember, how you are seen to be dealing with any issues can make or break a business.
Hopefully, these tips give you just a little insight as to what you need to do to kickstart your own business and hopefully take a small start-up and make it into a global success.