Elena Pismenskaya: look for new approach and unconventional solutions

Elena Pismenskaya: look for new approach and unconventional solutionsKids Fashion Retail Agency, a permanent partner of our exhibition, will carry out three workshop sessions on how to find internal reserves to increase work efficiency within the supporting program of the exhibition. We asked Elena Pismenskaya, the General Director of Kids Fashion Retail Agency, to evaluate the results of the year and share her forecast for 2019.

- Elena, your Agency will be holding training and workshops at the spring edition of the CJF – Child and Junior Fashion exhibition. What will the main topic be?

– Yes, we are now preparing three workshops at the same time. They all are united by the main topic: how to improve business efficiency getting use of the company’s internal reserves.

The first workshop: how to prepare an effective marketing diary; what it is necessary to do; what you can save money for; and what things are already useless.

The second workshop: there will be an instruction on how to develop and introduce a loyalty system. At present, only creatively different programs can be effective: the programs that stand out from a large number of almost identical loyalty systems.

The third workshop will be dedicated to an effective pricing which should take in account both new VAT and sales campaigns which are already considered as “must have”.

– What are the results of the year in the market of clothes for children compared to the previous year? What have been the major trends?

– A rational consumption, a further customers’ enthusiasm for discounts, and growth in online trade were the main trends of 2018.

If we remember how the sales have been going throughout the year, we’ll notice that in the beginning all seemed to be easily forecasted: a hard February with low sales changed to March which was supposed to demonstrate a sales increase of new collections. However, this didn’t happen since the rational customers decided not to hurry to buy summer collections in March when the winter was not over yet. A long and warm summer helped to sell out the spring-summer collections; however sales of the autumn-winter collections started only in November-December because August, September, and October were very warm, and the weather didn’t help the sales of winter upper clothes and footwear.

An increase in sales in 2018 compared to 2017 was demonstrated mainly in the online sales channel. Many retailers considered a good result reaching this year the turnover amount of 2017.

– Elena, what is your forecast for the coming year? What possible mistakes would you warn your colleagues about?

– The sales growth in the online sales channels will continue in 2019 and a “filtration” of the market will go on. Weak market players with no safety reserves will be leaving the market.

In such a situation it is very important to demonstrate something unique. This also concerns the product: your product should have advantages compared to the competitors; and this concerns your work with your loyal customers: you have to know your customer very well, and you should offer him exactly what he expects from you!

Do not take part in price wars: it is difficult to become the winner in such games. You’d better concentrate on improving your product.

I sincerely believe that in 2019 we’ll see interesting and quality collections, modern stores, and new technologies. All this will help our industry enter a new level. I wish all of us success and further improvement in our nice business; let all today’s problems help us find new outstanding solutions and new ways of development!