how to succeed in business from 3 leading women in fashion

Tempted to start a new career? I spoke to 3 successful entrepreneurs to get their top tips on how make it in the world of fashion and business.

holly anna scarsella – founder of Pampelone

1. do your research

Sound your idea out with credible business peers who’ll give a more objective piece of advice rather than family/friends. It’ll save you time and money in the long run.

2. invest time in social media

Instagram is essentially your shop window. It provides Pampelone with over 50% of our traffic. Know how to target your market online and highlight key aspects of the brand through social channels.

3. analyse everything you do

Bloggers/Social Influencers can create great exposure for your brand – if they’re right for you. I live on Google Analytics and when an influencer posts an image, I track how many click-throughs we get to the website, how many new followers etc. We invest in the ones who work for us and then work with them on a longer term basis.

olivia rubin – designer & founder of Olivia Rubin

1. know your trade

Before starting up my label I studied for 5 years at Central St. Martins and did internships and freelance work with top designers. Witnessing all the behind the scenes action of how a fashion label ticks taught me a lot. Enrolling in a business course can also help.

2. be prepared for hard work

Yes, being a designer can appear glam, but as a business owner first and foremost, I’m pretty much a one woman band. I deal with all the sales, press, social media of my fashion label – sometimes designing seems like the smallest part!

3. find your niche

A competitive spirit is a must-have trait for any business owner. My niche was, and to an extent still is, my prints. However, there are many more print designers than there used to be when I started 10 years ago, so I constantly strive to offer something that little bit different.

ellie lines – stylist and designer, Ellie Lines

1. never give up

The saying that every new business needs at least 3 years to break even is so true. When it’s day 1,095 and you’re on your knees crying, pick yourself back up and give it another punch. Always learn from your mistakes and trust your instincts.

2. be money minded

The biggest constraint to any new business is cash flow, so micromanage it at all times. Be ready with plan B and plan C as things rarely go to plan A.

3. use your support network

You’ll live and breathe your business, so it helps to surround yourself with people you trust and who are prepared to listen to you (quite often out of business hours!).



Ashling McCloy


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