Creating a brand identity: How to make your fashion SME stand out

When you’re a fashion SME, establishing a brand identity that can compete with larger organisations can seem daunting. And, this is made especially difficult when you’re in a competitive market rather than a niche one.

Fashion industries are usually struck by this issue when setting up and trying to spread the word about their business. And, as many SME’s won’t necessarily have a lot of start-up capital, that’s another added obstacle to overcome.

But, don’t fret: if you’re a fashion SME looking to create a strong brand identity, there are plenty of ways you can do this without breaking the bank. Here, we will be sharing four of the top ways small businesses in the fashion industry can give their company its own personality.

Create a brand publication

A great way to get your brand voice heard and to help you connect to your consumers and build loyalty is to create a brand publication that epitomises what your business is about. This can be helpful for a number of reasons, such as getting your USP recognised, or if you’re creating your own product line that you want to separate from your current lines. One example of this is designer fashion brand Garment Quarter. We spoke to the company’s chief brand officer Michael Barker, who told us creating an in-house publication was part of a bigger picture to market their upcoming line of own-brand clothing and accessories:

“With the wheels in motion for us to release Garment Quarter’s own fashion line by early 2019, we really needed to think how to differentiate our line from the rest of the big labels we stock online.

“We looked at successful marketing techniques we’ve previously used and recognised that one of the most impactful things we’ve done was a look book. So, we took inspiration from this and started playing around with concepts for an in-house magazine. We wanted to give our customers a more personal experience, including features on what goes on behind the scenes at photoshoots, staff picks and gift guides, as well as new brands to keep everybody excited about Garment Quarter’s current and upcoming plans.”

Set up social media accounts

Social media is the most influential way of sharing information online to target a range of people, including the younger fashion-forward demographic. So, it’s key to use a platform where you can show your lines to as many people as possible, and where they can go back to view these at their own leisure.

To create an effective brand identity on social media, you’ll need to figure out who your target market is and what medium they’re using most. Instagram is a platform used by many, especially younger, people and was designed as a predominantly visual platform — which makes it perfect for fashion businesses wanting to show off their designs. You can also create and share videos, live videos and stories, so you can show what your business is getting up to. The social media giant’s blog for businesses has plenty of helpful advice, including this guide to making standout creative content.

Have an exciting brand website

While social media can help to get potential customers interested in and excited by your products, the aim of the game is that these users will eventually end up on your website where they can learn more about your services or make a purchase. So, you’ll need to prepare your website for a potential influx of visitors. A good website will be fully-functioning, be easy to navigate and look exciting while remaining professional.

To create a brand website that is all of these things, you need to have clear photos of the clothing and accessories you’re going to be selling — good photos can help you sell much more and enable you to make your products look distinct and unique. Additionally, you will need well thought-out product descriptions that have been optimised for popular keywords so that you can ensure people will be directed to your site when searching for these phrases.

If you’re not sure of how to do this yourself, you might want to look into hiring a copywriter to do it for you. Sites like ProCopywriters will have a member directory where you can view your potential copywriter’s skills and specialities, so you can decide who to pick.

Show your brand personality through content marketing

Once you’ve built an attractive and reliable website, you should be thinking about creating some content which will convince your customers to buy into your brand. While the ‘about us’ page can be a good way to do this, content marketing will also allow you make supportive, informative material that is relevant to your brand. This is a great way of showing your brand personality, and it will help to establish you as an authority on all things fashion. You can also use it as a valuable opportunity to showcase your products. This could include creating style guides which show your customers how to piece together their outfits in a range of ways — just don’t forget to optimise your content to target certain search queries.

You could even dedicate a piece of your content marketing every week or so to showing off customers in your products. Not only will this let your customers see what your clothes look on people just like them, but it can also make for a quick yet effective strategy if you’re short on time.

In a competitive industry like fashion, it can seem daunting and sometimes unfruitful when you’re trying to establish your brand identity among the thousands of others. But, with this guide, some creativity and patience, you’ll be well on your way to establishing an unforgettable brand identity.