When I think about what it takes to make a fashion company successful, I picture things like trendy clothes, celebrity customers and flashy runway shows. But Skype?
Perhaps it’s not so surprising, though. Lately we’ve been coming across a whole host of businesses in the apparel industry that count on Skype as a fundamental part of their business model, and we’ve seen some pretty clever use cases. Many are giving one-on-one styling attention to clients via Skype video calls, allowing them to make a personal connection even while building up clientele in places far from where the business is based.
I thought I’d share some of the ways clothing-related companies put Skype to use. It might give you some ideas for incorporating video calls into your business – or even the inspiration for an entirely new venture!
- Tog + Porter offers women across the United States a virtual personal stylist and shopping service. Each client is assigned a stylist who, after a Skype video consultation, personally selects clothing and accessories right for her taste, budget and lifestyle. The stylist ships the selections to the client, and the two review the items and put together outfits during a follow-up video call. The client buys only what she wants to keep. (Session pictured in photos below).
“With a background in traditional retail, we understand the importance of building a great relationship with our customers,” says Ashley Jude, founder of Tog + Porter. “So when we took our personal styling focus online, we knew that to give our clients the best experience we needed to meet face-to-face. Skype gives us that opportunity.”
- Second Button makes made-to-measure shirts for men. From what we hear, taking measurements correctly is one of the hardest parts of the tailoring business. Second Button guides men in taking their own measurements properly via a Skype video appointment with a professional stylist. During the session men also check out fabrics and styles, and get help making the right choices.
“Originally, we thought men could learn how to measure themselves from a video, but we quickly learned they need one-on-one instruction,” says Malcolm Gillian, CEO of Second Button. “Because we can’t have offices in every city, we decided that Skype is the best way for us to provide that individual service to our customers.”
- Little Lime Dress is another business that helps women overhaul their wardrobes and put together outfits for any occasion. The company offers various service packages that all involve working with a stylist over Skype on clothing-related projects. Women can get help cleaning out their closets, updating a wardrobe with new clothes, packing for a vacation, or picking out an ensemble for an important event.
“With the use of Skype, I’ve been able to expand my personal styling reach to clients across the country and internationally,” says Meaghan O’Connor, Little Lime Dress owner/stylist. “It’s an easy, hassle-free way for us to work together.”
How about you – are you already using Skype video calling in interesting ways? Tell us about it in the comments below, or tweet to us at @Skype4biz.