Thursday, 16 December 2010
Fashionomics
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 I imagine you may be wondering what this title means…It is really quite simple when one combines the current economic conditions we are facing in America with the world of fashion. America is going through some drastic economic changes and we are watching the retail world change right before our very eyes. Over the last decade we have seen a slow elimination of the middle class in America. This dissolving middle class means that its past and current members are either getting richer or poorer.  This is turn means that retail is changing directions by serving two distinct markets and those retail companies that are trying to stay in the middle are falling further and further behind as their customer base disappears. So how does that affect you and FASHION?

Fashion trends are now created overnight as the Internet has changed the world - what was popular in Europe yesterday can now be available in the rest of the world tonight.  So today's retailer is trying to get clothing to the market as soon as it can in order to take advantage of the latest greatest overnight sensation product or outfit.  When you have clothing being produced in days, not weeks, you tend to suffer in the area of quality and true design.  You also find a mentality among retailers that ONE FASHION fits all, which we all know is far from the truth.  These changes in the marketplace mean that the cost of high end clothing is increasing as the costs to produce it have increased.  Companies pay more to meet faster delivery dates.  So now we have superior products in the more expensive retail stores that are more quality conscious than cost conscious.  The other end of the spectrum is driven by price, not quality, so stores are trying to MATCH THE LOOK of the latest popular designers but do it at a much lower cost per unit.  These producers of clothing are found in the retail sectors that focus on the lower end of the economic ladder.

Who is losing in this need for instant sales and cost of quality?   Well, if there was a growing Middle Class I would say they are, but as we move toward a two tier economic system we see that the demands of the market are being met, either at Stores Like Nordstrom's and Neiman Marcus or Wal-Mart and Target.

When I work with my clients, my goal is to find the best clothing at the best price based on my client's budget.  Patient shopping and knowing where to look are the keys to finding clothing that will LAST and meets the individual desires of my clients.  You can find designer fashions at many online sites, at designer outlet stores and at a few of the remaining retail outlets that are trying to decide if they are going to compete with Target or compete with Nordstrom's.  A superior wardrobe consists of quality clothing that fits your body style, brings added value to your personal brand and is timeless, along with fitting your budget!!!  If you are not sure where to begin…My suggestion would be to get help, hire a professional and turn your closet into a place that you love to enter and has outfits that make you feel confident and powerful.

Photo Courtesy of www.istockphoto.com


Image | Brand | Fashion
Mila@modaimageconsulting.com | www.ModaImageConsulting.com
Direct: (615) 218.6831 | Office: (615) 567.6969

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Posted on 12/16/2010 4:16 PM by Mila Grigg, President MODA Image Consulting
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Wednesday, 8 December 2010
MODA Image Consulting in the Nashville Business Journal this week!
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Retailers up the ante with fashion shows, wine, food

Nashville Business Journal - by Eric Snyder
Date: Friday, December 3, 2010, 5:00am CST

 

 

 


Photo courtesy of Benjamin Gibbs Jr.

Mila Grigg, president of Moda Image Consulting, speaks to shoppers during an after-hours event at the Dillard�s at CoolSprings Galleria this fall.

Shopping is often little more than an impersonal transaction. Some retailers, however, are catering to their customers with music, wine and advice.

With a goal of building stronger relationships with customers, retailers are using in-store events to draw in more shoppers � and more sales � amid an extremely competitive retail scene.

Events can help increase sales and reinforce a retailer�s brand, but they also offer lessons for other businesses. Even if you deal with clients, events can be a way to share new products or services, show gratitude or lure those wary of high-pressure sales tactics.

Ladies night out

Mila Grigg, president of Moda Image Consulting, convinced the managers of the Dillard�s at CoolSprings Galleria to allow Grigg and 150 of her clients and invited guests to have free rein of the store, and to pay her for the privilege.

After walking in on a red carpet, guests, attending for free, heard Grigg speak about her favorite clothing items in the store. Shoppers were then allowed to explore for two hours, getting advice from Grigg on whether items worked for their figures.

In two hours, Grigg estimates those 150 customers spent $30,000 on merchandise. Having a third party endorse an outfit, she said, made it easier to plunk down cash.

Brant Musgrave, a Dillard�s district manager, said allowing Grigg to host an event was an easy call, as it allowed the department store to reinforce its brand as customer friendly and fashion forward. Lacking the �coast-to-coast� presence of some retailers, events help Dillard�s stand out and connect with its customers.

Wine and cheese

Brett Corrieri, proprietor of Corrieri�s Formaggeria and Vinea Wine & Spirits and a corporate chef at Mafioza�s, all in the 12 South neighborhood, was frustrated that his wine-store customers didn�t know about his cheese shop located directly behind it and vice versa.

To get some cross pollination, Corrieri began hosting free wine tastings outside of the cheese shop during warm months. During the colder months, he charges for wine tastings inside Mafioza�s.

The events help promote all three entities, and at a better bang-for-the-buck compared to traditional advertising, Corrieri said. He said the events, particularly the free tastings, also serve as a thank you to the neighborhood, where many customers stroll from their homes to the shops.

The events are of the soft-sell variety: a list of the wines and their prices is displayed. If a guest shows an interest in the wine and has questions, staff from the wine store helps him or her learn more. If guests just want to sip chardonnay while talking with their friends, they�re left alone.

This is a key aspect of hosting a successful retail event: Customers don�t want to feel like an event is just being held to sell them stuff, said Lynni Megginson, a Washington, D.C.-based retailer-turned-interior designer and author of �The Absolute Guide to Planning Fabulous Retail Events.� Event guests, she said, want to feel comfortable, almost like they�re at someone�s home.

Britt Beemer, founder of South Carolina-based America�s Research Group, said the main keys to any successful retail event should be kept in mind by any business, even those not in retail.

�People always love to be the first to see new things,� Beemer said. And events, retail or otherwise, should be fun. �Fun and new still works, every time,� he said.

Planning your event

Hosting an in-store event is a powerful tool for retailers to increase and connect with their customers. They also, however, place the retailer�s name and reputation on the line, even if the event is being thrown by an invited guest such as a fashion coach.

� Be discriminating. Many events are based around a vendor doing an in-store demonstration. Be cautious in choosing whom you allow to do this. �They�re either going to make you look silly, or they�re going to make you look fantastic,� said Brant Musgrave, a district manager for Dillard�s.

Repercussions from a failed event can be permanent. �If things don�t go well, the consumer will never give you a second chance,� said Britt Beemer, a South Carolina retail consultant.

� Offer a discount. �Even the high-end customer expects something for their time,� Beemer said. Discounts not only bring customers to a store, but they help bring them back. Consider leaving your guests with a discount offer for a return visit.

� Timing is everything. Lynni Megginson, a Washington, D.C.-based interior designer, held her home-decor store�s events on Thursdays. This allowed her customers, mainly mothers, to talk about their experience at the Friday school pick-up lane or at the weekend country club. Event customers, Megginson said, �become your own little team of ambassadors.�

But beware of your surroundings. Before scheduling one event, Megginson neglected to check the school calendar. Turned out that Thursday was part of a long break.

� Eric Snyder


Image | Brand | Fashion
info@modaimageconsulting.com | www.ModaImageConsulting.com
Direct: (615) 218.6831 | Office: (615) 567.6969

Consultations are always complimentary!

 

 

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Posted on 12/08/2010 12:00 AM by Mila Grigg, CEO
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Wednesday, 8 December 2010
WATCH HERE TO SEE SOME OF MY FAVORITE CHRISTMAS GIFTS FOR MEN AND WOMEN!
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ARE YOU STILL WONDERING WHAT TO GET THAT FAVORITE PERSON IN YOU LIFE?

I will take you on a tour of one of my favorite department stores with Channel 4's Better Nashville with host Jennifer Herron! Click HERE to watch!

MODA Image Consulting offers Gift Certificates!

We are constantly asked if we provide gift certificates and the answer is yes!  This is truly a gift that lasts a lifetime.  A few hours of time is all it takes to help to create an image that is absolutely unique. These are perfect for the upcoming holiday season.

Please call 615.218.6831 or e-mail me at mila@modaimageconsulting.com to find out how we can create the perfect gift for that special person in your life.  (Wives, husbands, children, friends, sisters and brothers!)

 


Image | Brand | Fashion
info@modaimageconsulting.com | www.ModaImageConsulting.com
Direct: (615) 218.6831 | Office: (615) 567.6969

Consultations are always complimentary!
 

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Posted on 12/08/2010 12:00 AM by Mila Grigg, CEO
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Wednesday, 8 December 2010
Educating employees; the people who represent the living, breathing brand.
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Do your employees represent you brand? You may have the best business concept, perfect product or valuable service...and your employees may be stopping the sale or relationship with your customer before they have the opportunity to learn about what you have to offer. Do your employees complement your corporate or small business brand? 
MODA Image Consulting will increase the return from your greatest asset. I will work with your employees on an individual or group basis to discuss the importance of appropriate fashion and how first impressions can be improved with a few changes in ones wardrobe and appearance. You have invested a great deal in building a reputation and brand awareness for your company, and now you can give your employees the skills and information they need to represent your company and themselves with confidence and style. Whether you work in a construction firm or a law firm, MODA can help enhance and improve the image of your company by improving employee image, appearance and fashion for all key positions.
The quote below is from Christine M. Owens...Senior Vice President, Communications and Brand Management of United Parcel Service, Inc. (UPS). She truly understands the value of building a cohesive strong brand through employees. Educating employees to best represent your brand begins with the understanding that a first impression can kill or help your brand - their image will determine how successful that first impression will be!
"Before your customers can express their passion and affinity for your brand, one must connect to an even more-significant ambassador; your employees. The UPS brand; symbolized by reliability, trust, and superior service; is activated through its employees, who serve as brand ambassadors to customers in more than 200 countries around the world. Educating employees on what the brand represents and demonstrating how they are the most-important customer touch point serves to activate their passion, which leads to a passionate customer. Each day UPS drivers walk through the doors of 8 million customers, delivering and picking up 15 million packages. This daily human connection enables UPS drivers to learn their customers; businesses and anticipate how to serve them better. Based on customer satisfaction indexes, the UPS driver enjoys a better relationship with customers than its competitors. That's why a critical component of UPS's new global branding effort is targeted to educating employees; the people who represent the living, breathing brand."

Call or e-mail today to schedule a complimentary consultation for yourself and/or your business!

Photo courtesy: www.istockphoto.com


Image | Brand | Fashion
Mila@modaimageconsulting.com | www.ModaImageConsulting.com
Direct: (615) 218.6831 | Office: (615) 567.6969

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Posted on 12/08/2010 10:11 AM by Mila Grigg, MODA Image Consulting
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