Bidding for Services Online

By , April 5, 2014 9:23 am

Well, I finally have a teensy bit of confirmation (one case history) about my theory that all those cheap websites offering marketing solutions aren’t always worth it.  An entrepreneur I know went to a bidding site for logos.  He went three times.  The first two times he got back garbage – or results that were unusable and totally unsalvageable.  The third time was a charm – he was happy with the logo he received and is going to register it as his trademark.  The whole process cost him some time (close to three months in total) and some money (he didn’t share how much with me).  With no guarantees that each time he threw the line back in the water (or the credit card back on the website), that what he would reel in would be of any value to him.

And this is a savvy entrepreneur.  He had some background in marketing and was capable of judging the quality of the work he bought.

So, should you bid for marketing services online?  Well, ultimately that’s a decision up to you.


Sandra Holtzman teaches CEO 035: Licensing.

She is the author of Lies Startups Tell Themselves to Avoid Marketing.

Men’s Image and Styling

By , March 31, 2014 12:32 pm

Meet our new Instructor, Joseph DeAcetis!

He will be teaching SXF 335  Fit, Balance and Proportion Fundamentals for Men’s Image and Styling, starting April 2, 2014!

Joseph De Acetis


Hi Joseph! So, tell us a little about yourself…

Creative Style Director
Specialties: Forbes is a vigorous global media company celebrating the inconceivable changes within the realm of both luxury style and living smart. Forbes.com is a new world edition of fine art, style, nightlife and travel-featuring luxurious and exclusive content. Menswear’s diplomatic inspiration to business and recreational high-profile lifestyle. Accomplished Fashion Director, (content provider, stylist, writer, editor) Fashion Film Director – image creator and marketing liaison in the luxury category for magazines and web sites. Creative Style Director, with a keen sense for editing and developing luxury apparel collections. Spokesperson for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Berlin, participant in Executive Fashion Panel for various Fashion Brands, Associations as well as Luxury Retailers. Proficient in identifying and capitalizing on new market opportunities within the luxury apparel, footwear and lifestyle products categories.
Fashion forecaster for luxury apparel industry, producing trend pages for Forbes, Forbes Life and The Style Capitalist found on Forbes.com. Directed Fashion Films and style coverage for Kiton, Blue Pony Brand and Jack of Spades. Celebrity Stylist for Forbes Editorial Covers including Justin Bieber, Richard Branson, Elon Musk and Kevin Systrom. Specialties: Menswear Apparel, Luxury Market and Dressing to achieve Corporate Ascension.


For those of us unfamiliar with this market, please inform us…

THERE ARE SEVERAL EXCITING PLATFORMS WITHIN MY POSITION.  THE THRILL OF CREATING THE IMAGE FROM CONCEPTION TO POST PRODUCTION, MEETING AND WORKING WITH A HANDFUL OF THE MOST POWERFUL INDIVIDUALS IN FILM, SPORTS, BUSINESS AND THE ARTS.   AT FORBES, MANY OF THE SUBJECTS HAVE CHANGED THE ENTIRE GLOBAL PLATFORMS IN BUSINESS, SCIENCE, FOOD AND TECH INDUSTRIES. I ESPECIALLY ENJOY WRITING AND THE SOCIAL MEDIA AS WELL AS TRAVELING TO EUROPE TO REVIEW THE MEN’S AND WOMEN’S FASHION SHOWS AND PRESENTATIONS


Tell us about a project or accomplishment that you consider to be the most significant in your career…

I HAVE RECENTLY DIRECTED A FILM FOR KITON TITLED ” A NEAPOLITAN DREAM” WHERE DIRECTED AND STYLED.  I HAVE LIVED AND WORKED IN PARIS, FRANCE FOR MANY YEARS, AND HAVE ART DIRECTED AND STYLED NUMEROUS MAGAZINE COVERS AND SPREADS SUCH AS ESQUIRE,  PEOPLE MAGAZINE, ROBB REPORT, FORBES AS WELL AS MANY AD CAMPAIGNS.


What will the students learn from your class?

STUDENTS WILL LEARN PROPORTION- FIT AND STYLE FROM A LEADING  MENSWEAR AUTHORITY WHO IS CURRENTLY WORKING WITH THE GREATEST BRANDS IN THE INDUSTRY.  STUDENTS WILL LEARN, STYLING TIPS WITH RESPECT TO ALL MENSWEAR APPAREL CATEGORIES,  HOW TO FIT EACH RESPECTIVE FORM AND CREATE SILHOUETTE ON AN BODY,  COLOR COORDINATION,  MENSWEAR LINE REVIEW AND AN INSIDERS TAKE AND KNOWLEDGE OF THE MOST SOUGHT AFTER GROWTH MARKET WITHIN THE FASHION INDUSTRY.  STUDENTS WILL ALSO HAVE A KEEN UNDERSTANDING OF THE MARKET.


Thank you and we look forward to your new class!

To register for this new class, please visit http://www.fitnyc.edu/noncreditregister.

Are you a successful business?

By , March 22, 2014 9:15 am

Three of the most important things startups need to focus on / demonstrate if they are raising money, want to grow or just plain want to be successful:
 
1.       Gaining customers (or if no proof of concept then a list of qualified customers)

2.       Showing they know how to grow their business

3.       Demonstrating profitability and ROI

These points may sound easy to achieve and you may be saying to yourself, ho hum, I don’t need to read further.
 
Point number 3 – Demonstrating profitability and ROI. A lot of startups get lost here.  They don’t realize that you have to invest/spend money in order to make money – Lie #4 – I have to show a profit before I can market.  Investors (and actually the company owners should feel this way too) are looking to see if you’re profitable or when you are predicting profitability (break even and beyond).  And tossing some money out willy-nilly at marketing efforts will never bring ROI into your company…you have to be strategic in how you market.

Here’s some definitions and formulas for calculating ROI and profitability:
http://www.dbmarketing.com/articles/Art129.htm


Sandra Holtzman teaches CEO 035: Licensing.

She is the author of Lies Startups Tell Themselves to Avoid Marketing.

Are you a successful business?

By , March 15, 2014 8:33 am

Three of the most important things startups need to focus on / demonstrate if they are raising money, want to grow or just plain want to be successful:

1. Gaining customers (or if no proof of concept then a list of qualified customers)

2. Showing they know how to grow their business

3. Demonstrating profitability and ROI

These points may sound easy to achieve and you may be saying to yourself, ho hum, I don’t need to read further.

Point number 2 – showing you know how to grow your business is key to not only getting funding but to keeping your business healthy. This is something that many startups and small businesses don’t focus on. They say cash is king and “they” are right. Sometimes companies become very successful very quickly and can’t handle it. Prepared for growth. By managing your cash flow you can set goals to grow your business, manage cash on a monthly basis and get a clear picture of what’s going on in your business. Make sure you understand all the financing options available to you – traditional as well as alternative and invoice factoring.

Don’t put your entire business at risk because of something that’s easy to plan for and track.

Here’s some interesting related points:

http://www.alleywatch.com/2014/02/5-red-flags-of-startups/?utm_source=AlleyWatch+Daily+Pulse&utm_campaign=c1ae92d926-RSS_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_e01c347085-c1ae92d926-62886025


Sandra Holtzman teaches CEO 035: Licensing.

She is the author of Lies Startups Tell Themselves to Avoid Marketing.

Are you a successful business?

By , March 8, 2014 9:26 am

Three of the most important things startups need to focus on / demonstrate if they are raising money, want to grow or just plain want to be successful:

1.       Gaining customers (or if no proof of concept then a list of qualified customers)

2.       Showing they know how to grow their business

3.       Demonstrating profitability and ROI

These points may sound easy to achieve and you may be saying to yourself, ho hum, I don’t need to read further.

Point number 1 – gaining customers is something that many startups and small businesses don’t focus on. They fall into my Lie #1 – If I build it, they will come.  Investors (and actually the company owners should feel this way too) are looking to see where your market is – are you marketing?  And startups, even marketing startups, often get lost in this space.  Ask yourself:  Would I invest in a company that can’t show me their market?  The customers lined up to buy the product as soon as it’s available?  A list of beta-testers?  ANY INTEREST AT ALL?

More and more I’m seeing startups and small businesses flounder in this area.  Forget for the moment Michael Moore’s crossing the chasm…these businesses aren’t even getting the early adopters.  Take heed and show the market interest.

Here’s some interesting related points:

http://www.alleywatch.com/2014/02/5-red-flags-of-startups/?utm_source=AlleyWatch+Daily+Pulse&utm_campaign=c1ae92d926-RSS_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_e01c347085-c1ae92d926-62886025


Sandra Holtzman teaches CEO 035: Licensing.

She is the author of Lies Startups Tell Themselves to Avoid Marketing.

Learn How To Style Web Pages With CSS Starting 3/2

By , February 25, 2014 8:00 am

CSS

What is CSS, you ask?

It’s Cascading Style Sheets and it is what designers use to style web pages. With CSS we add art direction – typography, layout, color and background images to our pages.

My next CSS class on FIT campus  starts Sunday, March 2 and ends the following Sunday. We go from 10 AM – 5Pm and if you’re nice to me  I will even let you take me to lunch.

Here are the topics we do with hands on exercises and demonstrations:

1. Smart ways to set font size.
2. Working with color and background properties.
3. Tried and true layout techniques.
4. Rollover navigation without javascript.

Plus we will get a good look at what Responsive Design is all about.

Yes, CSS3 is built into what I teach.

Since most web sites today are built upon a pre-existing framework I will introduce you to that idea as well. And if you have ever seen me create a customized WordPress theme and want to do it yourself this class is a must!!

This class is good for anyone but web design and developer wannabes wool love it the most. You will need to know some HTML before you take this class.

Now Go And Register Before It’s Too Late!!

 

Bud Kraus teaches CTD 600 Web Design: HTML , CTD 605 Web Design: Cascading Style Sheets, and CTD 613: WordPress.

A logo / design and tag line do not make a brand – especially a fashion brand

By , February 22, 2014 9:46 am

Yes. They are definitely contributors but there’s a 360-universe that comprises a brand and those elements are only a part of it. A key part of your brand is the brand promise:  what are you going to deliver?  It’s great if you can promise to deliver something no one else is talking about.  My company offers 60%-1,000% return-on-investment.  We back it up with numbers from actual clients.  A promise like this may not have clients knocking down the doors, but they ARE going to remember a promise that breaks through the clutter.

In what used to be called image marketing (such as fashion, liquor, and in the old days cigarettes),  you are often selling a story as the brand promise.  A story that the buyer believes will become their experience if they purchase and use the product.  Ralph Lauren is a master at creating stories that invite you to participate by wearing his clothing.

Below are some links that offer advice on branding for any kind of business (even Tom Fords’ advice works beyond the fashion world).

http://www.manta.com/TOTD/marketing/20140220/tm0h1bq

http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2009/12/define-brand.html

http://www.vogue.com.au/fashion/news/tom+fords+14+tips+on+building+a+fashion+brand,28189


Sandra Holtzman teaches CEO 035: Licensing.

She is the author of Lies Startups Tell Themselves to Avoid Marketing.

Michele Savoia

By , February 21, 2014 12:16 pm

The Center for Professional Studies mourns the loss of our instructor, colleague, friend and FIT grad, Michele Savoia. Savoia was in the very first Menswear Design class at FIT and after graduating went on to a wonderful career as a custom tailor and costume designer.He had a very high profile clientele and truly was a walking encyclopedia on all things important in the Men’s business.His sense of fit, image and styling was unparalleled.You could not stump him and his advice was spot on in terms of what to wear when. His own avant garde appearance, complete with numerous tattoos only added to his appeal and our adult students, many professionals in the industry, loved him. While the press quickly labeled him a “fashion designer” the fact is he was called “The Tailor” carrying on a family tradition from his grandfather and father.

Here is a picture of Savoia taken in his very last class on Wednesday evening 2/12. It is quintessentially him and captures his vitality. His accidental death is such a loss for all who knew him. Let us all remember him just this way. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.

Michele Savoia teaching. Photo by Larry Byrd

 

Fashion Week: Fall 2014

By , February 10, 2014 12:12 pm

By Jove: The Biz Buzz
Aha weekly tidbits for the HT Insider


What starts in the middle and is nine days long?

Fashion week is here and typical of this business we all love – it didn’t start on a Monday and it will go for nine days and nights but to us it is “Fashion Week.”  Of course, the big debate is always about  what is more exciting, the clothes on the runway or the ones on the attendees entering the venues.  And in case you did not know, sadly after the continuity that Bryant Park added with a fairly tight geographic dimension, this season the shows are uptown, downtown, East, West and even in Brooklyn.  Given the weather and the ice and snow in the city, the stiletto crowd is really being challenged. Actually as some of the pictures show there appeared to be more sensible footwear this time than in recent seasons. Of course these shots were from day 1 so we should stay tuned.  The heels may go higher after all, and the getting around to all the shows is going to be very difficult. That to me is unfortunate. A big name designer knows that people will make the effort not to miss no matter where the venue is. Alexander Wang is feeling very Brooklyn these days and has chosen to show there.  But how many lesser known designer shows will get cheated or missed while press and retailers waste valuable time   sprinting from one show to the next? Guess this is our answer to the Olympics!!

For a look at the attendees on the first day check this link out:
http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/492382-what-they-are-wearing-on-the-first-day-of-new-york-fashion-week/#?photo=1&_suid=139179748308409928465622853598

On a serious note the following WSJ article is a superbly informative piece on the process of putting together a collection, featuring designer Thakoon Panichgul (Thakoon 2/9– 545W 22St/Chelsea) from the point of inspiration to production of the samples which did not start until January 30 because of delays with fabric delivery. Experience what the creative process is and share in the designer’s stress.

 http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303496804579365231653157974?KEYWORDS=Thakoon&mg=reno64-wsj&url=http%3A%2F%2Fonline.wsj.com%2Farticle%2FSB10001424052702303496804579365231653157974.html%3FKEYWORDS%3DThakoon#eos

 

GOOD THINGS TO DO FOR BETTER CONTENT

By , February 6, 2014 10:39 am

Brandpsych logo

Sometimes we need a checklist to remind us of what is important. In the new world of all things “Content,” let’s review:

➢ Emphasize what your products and services do to satisfy your customers’ wants and needs

➢ Don’t market based on YOUR own preferences and behaviors. Think / Be Consumer Centric! Develop and use the number one communications skill of –“I’m Listening,” which indicates that you care if you act on what you are hearing.

➢ Explore customer behaviors and lifestyles and shopper personas. How do customers self-define their personas?

➢ Have customer data that is not influenced by your mindset. This is the customer era – bottom up not top down.

➢ Rely on onsite research to deliver insights into content useful to customers. What will initiate their discovery that you/your brand can help them solve their wants and needs problems?

➢ Good marketing content begins in imitation and develops innovation. The innovation doesn’t have to benefit those who are not your target market. Create specific strategies to focus mainly on loyal customers.

➢ Create your ideas for interactions by engaged-with potential customers

➢ Plan to answer customer questions in Real-Time (or Close-time). Remember – “I’m Listening – hearing – and acting upon your requests.”

➢ Develop intriguing, fascinating, compelling content that draws consumers into your brand’s world. The sense of discovery will bring attention, interest, desire and action (AIDA still applies).

➢ Trust and transparency in content and actions are critical to maintaining a sustainable relationship with today’s customers

brand content Drawing by Art Winters

Drawing by Art Winters

What do we understand and what can we put to use from this review of some of the key elements of Content Marketing Communications?

Let us know what you think…

Arthur & Peggy Winters co-teach SXB 200 Brand Marketing Communications for Image & Meaning and SXR 050 Intro to Branding: The Art of Customer Bonding.

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