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.
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.