Competing in today’s fashion industry is a huge challenge and has been tried unsuccessfully many time in the recent past. To win takes a lot of work and dedication. But to actually revolutionize the industry takes something much more. It requires doing something drastic, such as coming up with an entirely new business model. That is exactly what Fabletics has done.
Fabletics is a women’s leisure athletic brand of apparel started by Kate Hudson. Her mission was in essence to get women to become more physically active while feeling comfortable about themselves. Proper clothing was lacking in the market and this is where Hudson saw an opportunity. But this itself is not a guarantee of success. In a world where the likes of Amazon hold 20 percent of the fashion market share, something more is needed.
Fabletics employed several techniques to become successful, to the point where they reached $250 million in sales in just three years. They work to engage with the customers by properly understanding what they want and when they want it. This includes social media engagement, an online Lifestyle Quiz (which readers of this article are encouraged to take), use of massive amounts of data, and a unique membership model. The goal is to engage each customer with the end result of having them come into a physical store to buy something (and then retain that customer for life).
This last part is something known as the reverse showroom technique. As opposed to the typical trends of standard showrooming – where customers browse for something in a store and then return home to buy it online – reverse showrooming aims to work with the customers online up to the point of getting them to come into the store and buy something. This is the exact opposite of what the Amazons of this world do and is something that, if implemented successfully, can be highly profitable. In the case of Fabletics, it is exactly that.
Kate Hudson has been actively involved in this business strategy from the beginning. She is passionate about getting to know each customer and attributes a large part of the company’s success to this. Being a personal ambassador of the apparel is also a key part of the success. For her, launching this business has been no easy task, but she is very excited about the story of Fabletics and continues to be involved in every part of the process – from the design to the sale.