AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

One-Minute MarketerZara Speed Thrills in Retail

Subscribe to AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

Zara Speed Thrills in Retail

There’s a new business model, born out of the fact that speed thrills. Zara, a fashion retail store, is disrupting the industry not with digital prowess, but by changing the store timeline. 19001

I heard of Zara at a healthcare marketing conference in Chicago. Jeremy Gutsche, the author of Better and Faster, was a keynote speaker. He talked about how Zara is an unconventional business model and that it removes so much of the typical retail risk of carrying slow-moving inventory. The company restocks it’s stores twice a week, not twice a year. Zara also is quick to respond to customer input collected by sales associates in the stores. This close-to-the-customer approach is providing direct input to the designers.

The owner of Zara surpassed Warren Buffet to become the second richest man in the world. The secret to his wealth comes from designing, producing, distributing and selling its collection of clothing in only 4 weeks. Other retails take months to complete the same process. Low inventory that is constantly changing and attracting repeat shoppers (because there is something new every 2 weeks) is marketing genius.

Zara is known as the “fast fashion” outlet. Its marketing goal is to stay extremely close to the customer and to make fast changes based on customer information and trends. Speed thrills. It can disrupt other competitors just by changing the model.


Written by:

Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle. After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant. He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.” Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.” One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College. Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board. Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.