The Pump: Where Fashion and Tech Meet
“The Pump” is our weekly look at a key member of the Fueled Collective, Fueled's shared work space just south of Houston in New York…
While most office employees gather around the water cooler, we prefer our libations to be of the unleaded and premium petrol variety. “The Pump” is our weekly look at a key member of the Fueled Collective, Fueled's shared work space just south of Houston in New York City.
Market research is a no-brainer for startups looking to revolutionize an industry. It’s not just about identifying a pool of people who would consider consuming your good or service--that’s only scratching the surface. Understanding the market, knowing your demographic and its reach, leveraging customer feedback, following competitors, and hosting focus groups to determine things like willingness to pay, are all examples of the bare minimum you should be doing if you want to be among the greats.
Eight-Eighteen Strategies, a fashion-tech strategy firm based in NYC, knows what it takes to be one of the greats: time, market expertise, content direction, research, funds and a strategic platform. EightEighteen streamlines this process so you’re not left taking stabs in the dark and pouring money into a black hole. Having an efficient, comprehensive marketing strategy in your business arsenal puts you on your way to turning your brand into a lean, mean marketing machine.
EightEighteen, headed by experienced CMO and Founder Jed Wexler, wants its clients to reach their targeted audience by measurably identifying, predicting and solving market challenges. “Content plus community equals commerce,” said Wexler, noting the company’s slogan.
A Manhattan native, Wexler spent over 15 years in Los Angeles before uprooting to NYC in 2010 to get away from California distractions and adopt the Big Apple’s entrepreneurial spirit. “There’s a very different attitude on the West Coast and I knew I wouldn’t get anything done there. There’s an incredible business energy here in New York,” Wexler shared.
EightEighteen—a name derived from Wexler’s sister’s birthday on August 18—immediately settled into the Fueled Collective. Wexler has since made a name for himself with mentions in Forbes, NY Mag and LA Times, and positioning big-time brands such as Levi’s, Smashbox Cosmetics, MGM and Evian, to name a few.
EightEighteen came to fruition after Wexler recognized a discrepancy in how little background and market research brands were doing and how much money they were pouring into their projects without a business plan. “Good brands can only use good products as a crutch for so long; lasting, successful brands distribute impressive content,” said Wexler. “There wasn’t any creative strategy or content being used in the fashion industry.”
In addition to strategy, EightEighteen provides media planning, content direction, executive training and insight into which bloggers are appropriate for your initiative.
In August 2012, EightEighteen launched its data-driven index of the 5000 most influential fashion and beauty bloggers in the world, one of its biggest projects right now. Such rankings are based on the blog’s level of social engagement and content sharing, not number of followers. In a world where influencer marketing and content distribution co-exist, Wexler recognized a gold mine in blogging. Bloggers are trusted influencers, engaged with consumers on a more intimate basis than established media brands.
Take note, fashionistas and tech gurus: although EightEighteen is satisfied, with where they’re at and where they’re going, according to Wexler they’re “always looking for great minds and writers.”