Saint: Michael, we're meeting a lot of fashion and cosmetic entrepreneurs tonight. Both seem like crowded fields so how would someone like me ever get started?
Michael: First thing I would do is find a local brand, emulate that brand and look for contacts in that company by using LinkedIn because they'll most likely be happy to meet with you and talk about your idea.
Saint: Is it easier to get a product out there before the public than it was five or ten years ago?
Michael: Absolutely. Because today you have social media. You can get feedback even without a product and that's the key. If you can create prototypes and get feedback from customers, you'll understand what they want and what they really don't want.
Saint: I have an idea for a product line of t shirts, but how many t-shirts -for instance-would I have to make at first?
Michael: Don't make a dozen t shirts. Make one or two, maybe three at the most. And then test those one, two, or three out using social media. Your platform, right? To get the feedback from customers who say “this one really works, I hated this one, this was awesome.” All it takes is one great product.
Saint: Where do I find my first customer?
Michael: You have what we call finding your tribe. That target customer. People who going to gravitate to your brand so again you look for similar brands, see what their customer base is like and start reaching out to them, but you have to start talking to customers and potential customers because you will get valuable feedback right away. And you just have to do that on a constant basis.
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