Saturday, March 31, 2007

For tailors: Managing/shaping demand through blogs

Blogs can provide short-term sales spikes and perhaps even smooth out the seasonality of sales in the bespoke tailoring business and provide a predictable demand curve. Of course, the most well-known and successful example of this is Thomas Mahon and his blog the English Cut. Beyond simply sustaining a business, he actually grew and expanded his tailoring business through his blog back in 2005. He now makes visits to several cities in the US.

I'm thinking out loud but here are some ideas for a tailor thinking of an overseas visit. Search Feedster, Technorati or another blog search engine and get familiar with the most active blogs in your intended city (preferably one with an active blog community). Washington, D.C., I suspect, is one. Invite the blogger to a fitting, ask for an interview, take pictures, provide a couple of nice sound bites. The idea is to get mentioned or featured in a few blog entries to establish your brand. Don't forget to mention that you're thinking of an upcoming visit. Then wait for the appointments to come in. This is active viral marketing through blogs.

Alternatively, do an RSS search to establish a connection with your intended city and the customers who live there. Want to create a customer base in Atlanta? Then post a series of blogs showing that you address an unmet tailoring need and make sure you have an active site feed to Feedster. This is passive viral marketing.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Odd trousers

Fellow sartorial blogger Will has published a useful post on essential odd trousers on his blog, A Suitable Wardrobe. This is tremendously useful advice for anyone seeking to expand his clothing repertoire, especially MTM and bespoke.

The only thing I would add is perhaps a hardwearing fabric like whipcord or venetian for frequent travellers and lightweight cotton needlecord for summer use. Cavalry twill is also a classic hardwearing fabric, which Will mentions in his post.

Incidentally, I've ordered recently a light grey flannel that Will decribes, as well as whipcord and venetian trousers (both John Hardy fabrics).

Saturday, March 10, 2007

J.M. Weston photo essay

A nice photo essay in French on the well-known shoemaker J.M. Weston, with useful commentary by the shoe aficionados of AskAndy.