There’s an interesting link between startups, technology and fashion. Any industry which is defined by rapid change and innovation has a fashion element to it. The latest hot stuff which is getting attention, the stuff the market gets excited by, the stuff that gets media attention, the stuff that gets the fanboys and fangirls writing blog posts about it. The startup and technology media is very trend related. So much so that we all know what the hot spaces to be involved in are:
Wearables, 3D printing, Web of things, Drones, Crypto currency, Crowdfunding, and those other ones I’ve left out….
Get a Kickstarter project going with one of these topics in the header and it seems like the funding job is already half done. But if we want to go deeper on this issue as entrepreneurs, then we need to pay some close attention to what happens in the fashion industry itself. Those consuming the fashion and paying attention to it or rarely those who are actually creating it. There isn’t a correlation between being up with the latest trend and ever creating one. In fact, there’s a real danger in being obsessed with what others are doing. It means we’re following, not leading. Fans by definition are always a little bit behind the game – literally. Their focus is on appreciating what has already happened. It means that there might be an inordinate amount of time spent on keeping up.
It’s easy to understand why we might feel compelled to keep up. There’s a lot of social pressure in a sharing economy – the kudos that goes with knowing about the latest thing, using it, or owning the hardware. The ‘have you seen this’ side of the technology revolution.
Will knowing who raised x amount of capital help you raise capital?
Will having the latest apps on your smartphone help you build your app?
Probably not. Probably more of a distraction from the real work we need to do. Sure, be across the market place, but obsessions with the latest trends probably means we’ll never create one ourselves.
But on her 50th birthday I saw one of the coolest promotions I had seen in some time. Bloomingdales New York. It has the entire history of Barbie on display. Nearly every doll ever made in uber cool glass cases, right through the entire ladies clothing floors. It cannot be missed. and demands attention. In addition they have some life size barbies who have been dressed by leading fashion designers. Here’s a photo essay, and some important comments about it below:
If we are in the fashion business (which more of us are than we think) then we must constantly be re-inventing, and reminding our people why we are the coolest.