By ADEOLU ADESANYA
You know what, there’s actually no shortage of ideas out there. For days now, I have read blogs, spoken to people, watched the news, seen forums, and I’m wowed at the sheer volume of ideas out there. I’m sure if you take out 1 hour today, you will come up with loads of ideas.
But more important, knowing genuine consumer needs, having consumer insight and how to design, are what’s actually in short supply.
Sophia Amoruso might not be a familiar name to you, maybe you might not have even come about her company Nasty Gal, but she sure is going to be a force to reckon with. She didn’t come up with a tech innovation, or anything like that, she just did, what most people I know do on eBay -sell stuffs, and now she’s worth an estimated $250 million by Forbes.
And how did she amass this? She started off selling vintage clothes on eBay. In an interview with TheCut she said “Some of the best things that I ever sold on eBay, I bought on eBay, just for way less.” In 2006, Sophia Amoruso started by buying vintage clothes and accessories from stores around and then got her friends to model in them, she took and posted their pictures and then sold them off on eBay, and so did her business start, she called her eBay shop “Nasty Gal”. One of the first few sale that took her by surprise was when she sold an eighties Chanel Jacket for $1,000 which she had bought for just $20.
By 2007, Sophia Amoruso had 30,000 “friends” on MySpace, was doing roughly $115,000 in sales and netting $20,000. And in June 2008, after a couple of complaints from other sellers, she was kicked off eBay. Many others would have seen this as a major setback, but she saw it as an opportunity, and within weeks she launched her own retail site, and now, fast forward 2012 she is on track to make $128 million in sales with over 150,000 customers in more than 50 countries and over 50,000 followers on twitter.
You definitely can turn your constraints to a blessing, Sophia’s choice of friends as models- (because she didn’t have money to hire professional models), was one of the factors that paid off for her, because consumers could easily relate with the people wearing it, rather than seeing the clothes on professional models. Also, her decision to go ahead with her own retail site, after been yanked off eBay.
You want to start a business? we at CreativityTurf will say, go and figure out genuine consumer needs and while at it, keep it simple.
Click here for a more in-depth story on Sophia Amoruso.