Fashion Startup Challenge

Day Three: Finding Your “Perfect” Customer


 Welcome to Day THREE of the Fashion Startup Challenge!! Finding the perfect customers for your product.

What do you think of the Challenge so far? Let me know in the comments here

If you missed the first 2 days, scroll down to the P.S. on this page for access.

When you choose a specific customer you want to sell to, EVERYTHING becomes easier. You know what to design for him/her, you know what marketing message (and what images) she will respond to, and you can easily figure out where she “hangs out” and find her.

As a startup, part of you just wants anyone with money – I get it.

But EVERYONE isn’t a target market. Everyone can buy (we’re NOT turning people away), but choosing a specific customer helps every aspect of your business. EVERY single one.

It starts with answering these 3 simple questions.

1) Who do you want to see MOST using your product?

In this case, I want you to pick a real person – it could be someone you know or someone you’ve seen around town, but don’t pick Lady Gaga or something. I’m talking about a REAL live person in your life.

For example, if you’ve met your friend’s cousin, Audrey, and you think she would rock your handbags, she would love them, and she has some money to buy them – she’s it. If you pick Audrey, you know what she’s like, you can design FOR her ‘cuz you GET her, and you can market to her because you understand her.

2) Do they LOVE what you have and can they afford to pay for it?

A “perfect” customer needs to like what you have so much that he/she feels compelled to come back again and again to buy. A huge bonus is when your perfect customer is someone who also tells their friends all about your product and posts it up on social media. When it comes to the question of money, I don’t mean your ideal customer has to be rich. Not at all. I’ll give you an example from my own business. When I first opened my womenswear boutique on Lincoln Avenue in Chicago, my customer was in her late twenties, dating, going out a lot, and she was a blast to work with.

She didn’t make a ton of money but she had a Visa card and typically, she was the only person she had to spend money on. No kids, no big mortgage, no worrying about retirement, etc. She REALLY WANTED to look good and she was willing to whip out her CC when needed. I often dressed her for the first date with a new guy, then the 2nd, then she’d come back a few days later for a 3rd outfit for the all-important third date.

Years later, I moved my store a few blocks south. My customer changed overnight – it was amazing. The women in my new neighborhood lived in million dollar homes, they had a few kids, and they didn’t work outside the home. They had MONEY – tons of it. BUT, and it’s a big but, they weren’t at all like my twenty-somethings. They didn’t have as many places to go, and they didn’t CARE as much about what they wore. They sometimes felt guilty buying clothes for themselves because they were no longer working (outside the home for money, that is…)

And, they weren’t as much fun to work with. Which made it less fun to go to work. See the difference?

3) HFD factor (Hopes, Fears, Dreams)

I’m a fan of author Ramit Sethi’s idea that in order to sell anything, you have to understand your customer’s Hopes, Fears, and Dreams.

Stay with me here, it’s not as weird as it sounds…

Take my twenty-something customer. Hopes: I hope he likes me, ‘cuz I think I like him Fears: I hope I don’t look like I’m trying TOO HARD with this outfit or that my butt looks fat. Dreams: maybe he’s a good one to pick to travel the world for a yearlong adventure, or maybe he’s the one for the picket fence and mini-van…

Now let’s take the SAHM in the fancy house…

Hopes: I hope I’m balancing taking care of my kids with keeping myself up. Fears: I don’t want to spend too much money on myself but my friend Julie just bought a new Max Mara coat and I can’t go around looking like this – but and I don’t want my husband’s BS comments when he finds out I DID spend money… Dreams: I want to stay sexy and vibrant for a long time and be happy with my family… I might be exaggerating here, but the point is to go DEEP into why people will give you money – or not.


You’re going to choose your “perfect” customer TODAY. I want you to spend about 20 minutes answering these questions.

1) Who do you MOST want to see using your product?

2) Do they LOVE what you have and can they afford to pay for it?

3) HFD factor

After you complete this Challenge, keep yourself accountable and let me know what you find out. Just head over to my Facebook Page and leave me a quick comment. 

Use the hashtag #FBAchallenge so I can find it, OK?

See you tomorrow!


P.S. If you missed Day One, click here: https://fashionbrainacademy.com/dayone/

If you missed Day Two, click here: https://fashionbrainacademy.com/daytwo/

P.P.S. If this free Challenge is helping you, would you consider SHARING it?? Here’s the link to post or forward: https://fashionbrainacademy.com/startupchallenge18/