Isabel Marant H&MI’m fascinated when companies complain about sales that have been dropping, about the competition, about the prices of fabrics, of how difficult it is to export, etc. But I say that it fascinates me because it means that the textile is a creative sector.

Limiting yourself on doing collection after collection and not introducing any innovation but only in the products is an arduous work; all of us who are dedicated to this job know it. But nowadays this is not sufficient anymore.

The competition is fierce. Everything is online. If you need to know what collection has been created by your competitors, it is not necessary that you go to the shop anymore, you just visit their website. If you want to know which will be the next season trend you do not have to wait for the trend notebooks, by the way they were beautiful-, now you have a username and password and in addition they offer constant innovations. What do we have left? Innovation, to be creative until the final consumer on our offers.

This is why today I will speak, between others, of H&M and their collaborator designers or partners. You can read it in this Vogue‘s article:

Since 2004, fourteen brands have cooperated with H&M: Karl Lagerfeld, Stella McCartney, Viktor and Rolf, Roberto Cavalli, Marimekko, Comme des Garçons, Matthew Williamson, Jimmy Choo, Sonia Rykiel, Lanvin, Versace, Marni, Maison Martin Margiela and Isabel Marant. And other celebrities like Madonna, Kylie Minogue, Elin Kling and Anna dello Russo have also created capsule collections for the Swedish giant.

Isabel Marant for H&M
Isabel Marant for H&M

I welcome this initiative of H&M season after season, since they started this collaboration. If you read the article, you will see that numbers accompany the initiative. Not all brands can pay millionaire contracts to big designers as these, but all brands can associate and / or collaborate with other brands in order to sell more.

With these collaborations, I know that H&M offers a special feeling to their clients by buying brands at a cheaper price that maybe they will be never able to buy. This is a creative strategy. Or also the association of Seat and Mango creating the new Seat Mii by Mango.

Mii by MangoYes, I know perfectly that H&M as Mango are two big companies with big economic resources. Theoretically it is not necessary for them to look for strategies to sell more and nevertheless, they do it. Why don’t you?

I am sure that your company could find a partner / collaborator to increase your offer. I am not talking about suppliers; this would suppose an investment in a product that you do not know. This means that Mango cannot design cars and therefore it associates with Seat. Mango will have had supervised the design, the concept, etc. But the engine, what really makes the car work, is a clear design of Seat. Or does anybody have any doubt about it?

It is a question of associating. For example, if you have a T-shirt brand and these sell well and your clients want trousers; or you just simply want to increase your sales, my suggestion is to look for a brand at your level that does good trousers and collaborate.

Yes, certainly you can seek for a good pattern designer and do your own trousers but what do you believe will be more quick and sure? If the trouser brand is at your same level, you may assure a good production yourself. On the contrary, if you make them probably there will be testing and mistakes until you succeed and certainly, with the corresponding investment.

Union is strength and if you have chosen a collaboration “win to win” both of you will increase your sales.

Another example: if you already offer a total look but want to add complements and do not know where to begin, don’t get involved; look for an accessory line that could sell with your clothes and collaborate. Both of you will be doing a favor to yourselves and will both increase your turnovers.

I hope this has made you think and probably one day you will tell me with whom you have associated and how you have increased your sales.
Meanwhile, I have a couple of questions for you, if you would like to answer: Which is the fear?

What stops you?

Do you want to sell well?

This article was published in the journal LA AUGUJA · No December 41, 2015. Read the full version in Spanish.

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