Clothes On Tour

Here’s a strange thing…a company at the top end of a market, adapting an idea from the bottom end, and making it work.

I’m sure you’re familiar with the concept of the one day sale. A company hire a hall or empty shop unit and hold a one day sale of sports goods, leather goods, jewellery, furniture or something else. These sales almost always operate at the lower end of the market. The key selling point is that this stuff is dirt cheap and it won’t be here tomorrow.

Clemens en August do something remarkably similar, but at the other end of the market. They are a high end Munich based fashion retailer, but their clothes aren’t available in shops or online. Instead, each season they travel to international cities, selling their collections in contemporary art galleries for only three days at a time. This tour system allows the company to  cut out the retail margin, and the selling point is very similar – this is very attractively priced, and if you don’t buy today, it won’t be here tomorrow. Exclusivity is added into the mix. The concept has been dubbed ‘clothes on tour’.

It’s an interesting concept isn’t it, and I’m sure it’s something that could be applied to other markets. Remember the key factors – a time-limited opportunity to buy an exclusive product at an attractive price. Here today, but gone tomorrow.

A Small Market Niche

What do Martin Sheen, Al Pacino, Mark Wahlberg, Danny DeVito, Joe Pesci, and Seth Green have in common? Well aside from being actors, they’re all under 5’8” tall and they’re all customers of Jimmy Au.

Au runs a clothing company in Hollywood that specialises in suits for shorter men. You might think that a suit for a shorter man is simply a smaller suit, but apparently not, and this is the key to the niche Au has carved out. Most designers create their suits for men in the 5’10” to 6’2” range and then simply scale down for smaller customers without adjusting the fit. This results in knees and elbows falling in the wrong place.

In a world where most products and designs are created for people within the average or normal range,  there must be niche opportunities in myriad markets for products specifically aimed at the tall, short, fat or slim.  Might there be an opportunity to create a product for people outside of the normal size range in your market?

Shaving Lessons

There are many things I need help with, but until today, I didn’t consider that shaving might be one of them. London based high end grooming shop Geo F Trumper clearly disagree and now run classes in how to shave properly.

The company say that customer demand led them to create classes run by a professional barber who show clients the best way to shave for their own skin type. I’m not sure whether that’s true, but it certainly seems a great way to get people enthusiastic about what is a chore for most. And more importantly, it’s a great way to get them interested in obtaining the best tools for the job – which Geo F Trumper happen to sell!

Might this be something that works in your market? Are there classes you could run which would help?

Customers get the best from your product?, and might they be more inclined to spend more money with you if they had renewed enthusiasm for, and satisfaction from, what you sell as a result?