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MAGAZINE | Business coach Lisa Mutenure’s 5 tips to starting a beauty/fashion business

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This April, we’ll be profiling and chatting to African career and business coaches/mentors. If you’re a coach/mentor OR a professional/business owner who has made use of coaches, we’d like to hear about your experience or tap into your expertise like Coach Lisaemail Mmule (Digital Content Lead).

Business coach Lisa Mutenure’s 5 tips to starting a beauty/fashion business

by Lisa Mutenure

Starting a clothing or beauty business is exciting because oftentimes the motivation to start is usually connected to a personal life-changing story or past experience of the founder.

Although you may want to start a clothing or beauty business to help people and gain financial freedom, there are a few things you need to consider before you start.

1. What problem do your products and brand solve and how do they benefit your ideal customer?

When you understand the problem your target audience has, selling your products becomes easy because their pain becomes your pitch. However, even if your product may not solve a problem from your ideal customer’s perspective, remember that you can control the narrative with your brand’s message and story. Therefore your brand’s purpose and values combined with the products you sell can end up providing a solution to your target audience.

2. How are you going to promote your products and your brand?

Promoting the products and the brand is something that a lot of business owners in these industries struggle with. Most of them rely on using paid ads on Facebook and Instagram to promote their products in the hopes of boosting revenue and brand recognition.

However, this does not always work. Therefore effective branding, digital marketing, hosting pop-up events and collaborating with other business owners and content creators are great tactics that you can use to increase brand awareness and recognition and encourage customer loyalty.

You have to create strategies for how you’re going to promote your products and how you’re going to promote your brand. When you’re promoting a product your strategy will mainly focus on trying to sell and retain your customers. However, when you’re promoting your brand, the strategy will mainly focus on trying to gain loyal fans for your business so that it thrives in the long run.

3. What does your competition look like and how are you going to be your ideal customer’s number 1 go-to brand?

Your competition in your industry is another thing you have to look into before you start your business. It is important to understand how your competitors operate so that you may find what they are not doing and use that to your advantage.

Understanding your competition will also help you see how you can penetrate the market and get your ideal customer’s attention.

Lastly, when you understand the problem you solve, what your brand stands for and your unique selling point, coming up with goals and an action plan to grow your business becomes easier.

4. What are your goals for the next 12 and 24 months?

Most business owners make the mistake of not knowing where their business should be in the coming years. Just “winging” it may work for a year or two and that’s a big maybe but eventually you need to know where you want your business to be in the next 12 to 24 months. Some people like to work with a five-year plan but I don’t recommend this because unpredictable changes happen in the market and often force business owners to compromise and prioritise certain moves and actions depending on whether the changes are good or bad.

5. How are you going to fund the operations and day-to-day expenses?

The other mistake I have seen business owners make is failing to create a financial budget and track how money moves in and out of the business. You have to think about how you are going to pay for your operations, for example, production, marketing and other expenses before you start your business.

Because some businesses operate at a loss when they start, knowing your finances will help you understand how long you’ll be able to operate at a loss before your business starts bringing in any profit.

Looking at your finances will also help you track your cost of sales and other expenses you will incur so that you may know how to price your products and how many units you need to sell to make a profit or break even.

There are many things you should consider before starting a business in these industries, but the ones I shared are very important because they set the foundation for your business.

Wondering how I know of this? I’m Lisa and I’m an entrepreneur and a business coach and consultant for business owners in the fashion and beauty industries.

I help my clients build remarkable brands and boost brand recognition and revenue using disruptive and mind-blowing branding and marketing strategies. I have been operating in these industries for 8 years and have a talent for understanding what consumers are looking for.

🎁 I offer free consultation sessions every Tuesday and Thursday, and if you’d like advice on how to build a successful business, then visit my Instagram page to book a free call with me.

Starting a business is easy, but starting and building one the right way takes a lot of time, patience and money, so if you want to embark on this journey, brace yourself and enjoy the ride because great things take time.

About Author

Director Woman is a pan African women's career and business lifestyle digital magazine that celebrates, educates and empowers tomorrow's women, today & showcases that girls of colour are just as smart, capable and powerful.