Know your customer.

Understand who your customer is and what they want from you. If you’re a brand and sell your products to other retailers, you need to know what their customers bought of your products. It’s completely irrelevant what you sold to the retailer. Likewise forward bookings, or orders from your retail partners, are useless. Just because you sold it to them, doesn’t mean you’ll sell it to me. If you want to build a brand that customers love, look only at what they’ve bought from you. If they didn’t buy it, they didn’t want it. That could be a function of the right product at the wrong time, or the wrong product at anytime. Your job is to figure out what your customers wanted and then make sure they can get more LIKE it at the right time in the future.

Walmart buys Jet.com

It was announced today that Walmart is acquiring Jet.com. Jet set out to become an Amazon killer. The purchase of Jet by Walmart is an effort by both companies to do just that.

What intrigues me the most about this is that it leads me closer to the belief that Amazon will likely acquire Macy’s in due time. Walmart needed Jet to get deeper into the E-commerce space. Amazon needs Macy’s to get deeper into the store space.

The question I think other retailers and especially brands need to ask themselves is how do you compete or manage into this new retail model. It’s sort of like LinkedIn selling itself to MicroSoft. LinkedIn, as big and successful as it was, didn’t have the resources to advance itself and compete against Facebook and Google. As a brand or retailer of fashion goods, or any consumer good for that matter, you need to ask yourself what this really means.

It’s no longer about product, it’s about marketing and inventory. As a brand you need to market a lifestyle concept that people really freakin want. And if you have any hopes of being successful you’ll need to crowdsource those product to make sure you manage inventory. There will be no room for mistakes when you have what amounts to two behemoths controlling the entire marketplace.

Is the “Yogafication” of America waning?

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The team at PreeLine took a look at how users of our new platform were responding to future products coming this fall and found signs that casual looks could be waning. During the month of August, in both mens and women’s categories, they saw reflection scores on products tagged with casual words like leggings, hoodies, track pants, sweats and windbreakers weaken compared to prior months.

Reflection scores are an algorithm the team uses to understand a combined socialization effort on an item. This includes a range of efforts users undertake on a product like what they love or hate, what they comment on and with whom, as well as what they share to external social media outlets like Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram. The more positive a reflection score, the more people are sharing and socializing an item or group of items that they like and that those items are validated positively by peers.

Meanwhile during the month of August, products with more styled looks and tagged with words like embellished, leather, and fur gained reflection score momentum from prior months. In menswear, we saw a clear gain in scores on items tagged as Tailored. John Varvatos and Ralph Lauren were strong performers in menswear. Alice and Olivia, Chloe, and newcomer Two Eggs were top performers in womens wear.

What do you think? Could we be moving away from yogawear? If so, where might we be headed? Join the dialogue at PreeLine.

View the entire report here PreeLine August Report