“Sustainable fashion” has become the buzzword phrase of 2022, driven partially by Gen-Z on social media, as well as a general greater awareness of environmentally-friendly practices.
A 2020 IBM worldwide survey shows that consumers are looking for environmentally responsible products, indicating that sustainability is either moderately or very important to them.
In Southeast Asia, designers have also made waves designing sustainable fashion clothing for all kinds of activities, from high-end fashion to yoga clothing.
So whether you are a business looking to market sustainable fashion, or a designer who wants to take a more environmentally friendly approach, here are three things you can do to market your sustainable fashion business.
Why sustainable fashion?
“Sustainable fashion” sees fashion businesses manufacture or sell clothes with a system that has ecological integrity – ethical and fair trade fashion, secondhand clothing sold at thrift shops, and other eco-specific products such as vegan fashion.
The sustainable fashion movement recently gained momentum partly due to the global pandemic. While fast fashion has generated more than 50 billion in demand for its manufacturers in Southeast Asia (Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia), the supply chain shortage also affected many jobs.
For example, US3.17 billion orders in Bangladesh were cancelled in 2020, affecting millions of workers’ jobs. Apart from the weak social security fast fashion provides, there is also a ton of waste generated in Southeast Asia. In some countries, statistics show that most people throw away 40% of their clothing after the first wear. The good thing is consumers have demonstrated that they are ready for change, with 80% of customers saying they want change.
Now you are aware that sustainable fashion is in vogue, here are three dos you need to keep in mind when marketing your business.
First: Have an online presence.
Out of 256 Southeast Asian consumers surveyed, 63% indicated that they like to research online before purchasing.
Therefore, build an online presence using a website platform and learn how to increase web traffic to your site.
While other industries may perform successfully through promotional advertisements, sustainable fashion has a strong ethical focus. So your marketing campaign should educate consumers on the business’ eco-friendly aspirations.
Consider creating a site with reader-friendly articles sharing your knowledge with your customers. Take time to learn about search engine optimisation, which uses keywords to rank on search engines so more customers can find you.
You should also be on social media platforms where your target audience is likely to gather. Since thrifting is in fashion now, many youths take to Tiktok and Instagram to share their shopping hauls. Hire a social media manager if you have the budget, or take time out to craft posts that resonate to eco-friendly customers.
Second: Find your brand voice.
Now that you’ve established an online presence to start selling your clothes, you need to spend time crafting a clear and coherent brand voice.
Take note, one of the biggest differentiators between fast and sustainable fashion is the required amount of transparency. Transparency in how the business operates, from supply chain to employee management, you will have to show your consumers that your brand is well-aligned.
Sustainable fashion has many different niche markets and different target audiences. Your brand might target more than one audience in terms of age, demographic or interest, but you want to consider who they might be to keep your messaging consistent.
Knowing who your target audience will inform your brand voice – then you’ll know how to write and speak to them.
Positioning your brand with the right voice encourages clued-in consumers to spend more, which will improve your revenue.
Third: Keep customers returning to your physical store.
Like any business, sustainable fashion businesses will need to consider incentives such as special discounts, themed giveaways or educational workshops.
Reloved Collective, a second-hand thrift shop in Singapore, conducts in-store workshops to encourage upcycling. This move helps spread the eco-message, all while building an active community around their brand.
Consider a system that allows you to keep track of this valued community, and incentivise return patronage by offering them discounts.
A smart pos (point of sale) solution could help with such a task, along with streamlining business operations. The system can keep track of customers’ details so you can email them about the latest news, or keep track of their purchases for discounts. A smart POS system like Qashier also integrates with popular ecommerce platforms such as Shopify and WooCommerce further streamlining operations.
Lastly, adopt reusable packaging for your shop – this aligns you with your eco-mission. Your customers will use it and bring more exposure to your brand.
With growing awareness of sustainable fashion practices, consumers are ready to put their money where it matters. If you’re a business looking to market sustainable fashion, consider a smart pos solution like Qashier.
Qashier offers multiple digital solutions, including QR code table ordering, table management (F&B), employee management, customer relationship management (loyalty programs), inventory management, data analytics, and cashless payments, in an all-in-one device.
Qashier promises a seamless setup within 10 minutes, without any need for technical expertise. It boasts a user-friendly interface that is simple for anyone to learn and use. You’ll find 7-days-a-week responsive technical support from the local team if you require assistance.
Qashier is also affordable, with prices starting from as low as SGD1/day (in Singapore with a PSG grant), and this includes hardware, software, setup, training and 7-days-a-week local support.