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Quick Fix: Getting Mocks to Market

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When Lara Solomon launched her Mocks mobile phone socks business at 28, "the goal was to become the generic name for mobile phone socks, to establish the brand so the guarantee of the quality, the design, that you could take it back if there was an issue goes with that". That was in 2004. By the next year she was exporting her Mocks to retailers in the United Kingdom in orders of up to 45,000. "I never thought I’d fail. I believed the product would sell and I believed in the market." Starting with what she describes as a very, very basic website with a downloadable order form and an offer on free button badges with her logo on them, Solomon used a direct marketing approach for overseas retailers and distributors, promoting her one size fits all patterned knit phone socks through trade shows and giveaways such as having them handed out to people queuing to see the Jonas Brothers in New York. If companies were reluctant she persuaded them: "Do a trial. If they don’t sell we’ll take them back and if they do you can keep the money." This worked equally with giants in the US. Her other advantage, she thinks, was a willingness to be completely fexible with orders, imposing no minimums or pre-packaged requirements. She says working with global brands in her former marketing career made her aware of considerations like competitive pricing in overseas markets. "It made me less afraid of exporting. It’s just the same process but in a different country."

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