Close
 

Bambi Boutique opens: Q&A with Iyia Liu

  • News
  • December 1, 2017
  • Courtney Devereux
Bambi Boutique opens: Q&A with Iyia Liu

After the successful selling of Waist Trainer and Luxe Fitness, business mentor Iyia Liu talks about her newest store Bambi Boutique, the trials and tribulations of starting four businesses and how influencer marketing benefits her.

Launching into another business venture, Iyia Liu is a sucker for punishment when it comes to putting in the hard yards to grow a successful store. After the selling of her Waist Trainer and Luxe Fitness brands, the decision was made to start Bambi Boutique, a “one stop shop” as stated by the website, for clothing.

The clothing is imported predominantly from Australia, with the launch of the website due December 4. Liu’s newest venture is not one to be overlooked, despite entering a very saturated market, the 23-year-old is no newcomer to the marketing game.

Q&A with Iyia Liu, owner of Bambi Boutique.

Tell us a little about Bambi Boutique, where did the idea come from to open another clothing store after selling Waist Trainer and Luxe Fitness?

I actually tried a clothing store before Waist Trainer and Luxe, but at that time I guess I didn’t know very much, so I shut it down. I recently sold Luxe and Waist Trainer, so I was just a bit of "What do I do next?" This is something I’ve always wanted to do, so I thought I’d give it another try.

So you completed your business degree prior to opening the stores, did you always know you wanted to start your own business?

I think it was my second year, I was saying to my dad, "Should I just leave uni and start my own business? It's what I really want to do," and he said "No you should just finish, and then do it." So I did start when I graduated but I knew half way through that starting my own business was something I really wanted to do.

Bambi launches December 4, was getting the business to this point easier with the experience from setting up the last few?

Some things are definitely easier, like let’s say setting up the website, setting up the payment systems, there are a lot of things that are the same this time around. But within that there are also a few things that I am struggling with, like inventory management. I never had to do that with Waist Trainer or Luxe, but clothing has so many different products. So there are definitely some lessons I’ve been able to bring across, but also I am still learning a lot in the process.

6 days to goooo 🔥🔥

A post shared by BAMBI (@bambi_boutique) on

What lessons from your last few business ventures have you been able to use when setting up Bambi?

There are a lot of things that we’ve learnt. For example, what I failed with, with my first online clothing store was I put money into inventory and the website and I didn’t put enough money into its marketing. So then no one could find my website. So, this time, I’m actively doing the opposite, spending a lot of marketing, and it does feel like you’re potentially wasting money to start with. Last time I was only using my own Instagram to promote my clothes, now I’m using influencers and other people.

So, the use of influencers is a large part of your marketing strategy, how much of your marketing budget goes into these people? Do you find the high cost sees more results?

I think at the beginning when you’re launching you do have to put a lot into it, because no one really knows the brand. Once you get the brand up, you can pull back a lot on that influencer marketing and focus more on other types of advertising.

I think in terms of getting better results it is not necessarily always in a monetary way, it can bring brand loyalty and brand awareness, which is just as important. I personally as a shopper, don’t always buy something on the first go – but if I can instantly think of a store again when I have an occasion, then I will visit it more frequently.

You yourself are also considered an influencer, how do you find it as a career move, is it something you ever saw yourself being involved with?

It did just kind of happen, but I think it has been really beneficial. I feel like it really has opened up a lot of opportunities, I have created a lot of beneficial relationships from it and met a lot of interesting people through doing it.

@kyliejenner wears the 'Bad Girls Go Backstage Tee' ❣️ #bambibabe

A post shared by BAMBI (@bambi_boutique) on

Do you think this trend of influencers has longevity in these very competitive markets?

I think the more people trying to enter it, the more saturated it is going to become. So, it is hard to say, but I think for now it has the strength to stick around.

Your way of business has always been very ecommerce based, tell me about why those ecommerce landscapes rely so heavily on social media.

I think it is because social media just spreads so quickly, you can post something and people will see it almost instantly as opposed to other advertising. My two favourites to use are both Facebook and Instagram, I think they often go hand in hand – it is very hard to use one social media platform and not the other.

Both Waist Trainers and Luxe stuck out from the market as they had a clear point of difference, how do you plan to make Bambi as recognisable in such an over saturated clothing market?

I think again pros and cons, the waist trainer had a very niche market, so only a specific person would buy them. Whereas with clothing it is broader, I figured there is a lot of competition, but it is also something a lot of people like. As long as you can do your branding and get your whole product offering right, I think you have a chance.

I also think in New Zealand there is not a whole lot of clothing stores, more and more people are buying from overseas. So maybe if we can get the shipping and returns specifically for New Zealand customers and make it easy, we can dominate that market a little bit more. I think for sticking out we just want to be good, in every way possible. Good customer service, speed of delivery, pricing and quality. So I think we’re just trying to be good.

You’ve gone on now to create the 'Girls in Business' Facebook page with roughly 38,000 members and given public talks and packages about how to start your own business, tell us a bit about why it’s important to pass the knowledge on, how is it beneficial to you?

First of all I think one of the reasons I wanted to start it was because for me as a business owner, I always have questions and no one to help me. So I thought why not create a community where if I need help, I can ask and may I can learn from someone’s experiences, and they can learn from mine.

I feel like I get a lot of people messaging me telling them that I’ve inspired them to do something, but then they don’t actually know where to start. I don’t hold back on information. But at the same time when I was making the course I was like this is a lot of work and a lot to take in.

Is there any advice you will always give to new business owners, or those looking to get involved?

I think a lot of things, one thing though is that you don’t need a lot of money. I’ve heard of people going to the bank and getting out a $10,000 loan, but you don’t need to and it’s also a huge risk. Just try and save money before you start.

Another one would be just try something, ecommerce is so cheap to get involved with, you may as well give it a go if it is something you have been thinking about a lot.

​ ​

This is a community discussion forum. Comment is free but please respect our rules:

  1. Don’t be abusive or use sweary type words
  2. Don’t break the law: libel, slander and defamatory comments are forbidden
  3. Don’t resort to name-calling, mean-spiritedness, or slagging off
  4. Don’t pretend to be someone else.

If we find you doing these things, your comments will be edited without recourse and you may be asked to go away and reconsider your actions.
We respect the right to free speech and anonymous comments. Don’t abuse the privilege.

 

Direct sales: How multi-level marketing works

  • News
  • April 18, 2019
  • Sarah Dunn
Direct sales: How multi-level marketing works

The $200 million-plus direct sales economy contains many lessons retailers can use. As part of a wider look at this thriving corner of retail, we created a quick explainer showing how this business model typically works.

Read more
 
 

Direct sales: Meet the upliners

  • News
  • April 18, 2019
  • Sarah Dunn
Direct sales: Meet the upliners

We profiled different participants in the direct sales industry to find out what retailers can learn from them. Meet Isagenix distributors Adam Nesbitt and Bianca Bathurst.

Read more
 
 

Direct sales: Meet the business builder

  • News
  • April 18, 2019
  • Sarah Dunn
Direct sales: Meet the business builder

As part of a wider story looking at what retailers can learn from the direct sales industry, we profiled Isagenix distributor Ben Frost.

Read more
 

Social scoreboard

Zavy and The Register have worked together to create a scoreboard that compares how the top 25 traditional media advertising spenders in New Zealand have performed on social media over the past 30 days, updated in real time.

 
topics
Concept to closet
Business coverage of New Zealand Fashion Week.
Town centres
A positive retail environment over the past 12 ...
Amazon Arrival
Keeping up with all things Amazon as it ...
The Retail Yearbook 2017
As we battle our way through the busiest ...
Hospitality enhancing retail
Some think food and integrated hospitality offerings will ...
The future is bright
We spoke with four retailers in their twenties ...
Spotlight on signage
At first glance, the humble in-store sign might ...
Red Awards 2016
The Red Awards for retail interior design celebrate ...
Auckland Unitary Plan
Auckland is changing. The Unitary Plan will decide ...
How to open a store
Sarah Dunn considers what it would take to ...
All things to all people
Kiwi retailers share their omnichannel strategies.
Rising stars
Retail's top young achievers.
Delivering on your promises
The sale isn't over until your item is ...
Retail in heartland New Zealand
Retailers keep the regions pumping, but how strong ...
Sisterhood
Women in retail help one another. We spoke ...
The changing face of retail
Shifting demographics are creating big changes in New ...
The retail yearbook
With the help of experts in the retail ...
Retail rogues
We put the spotlight on staff training. Jai ...
Here come the giants
Topshop has arrived in Auckland’s CBD, David Jones ...
Window shopping: A spotlight on social media
Sarah Dunn and Elly Strang look at how ...
From retail to e-tail
Ecommerce has become part of the way mainstream ...
Loyalty in the digital age
How are retailers maintaining loyalty? Sarah Dunn, Elly ...
The Innovators | In partnership with Spark Business
Technology is rapidly changing the retail industry as ...
 
News

Leveling up: Exploring multi-level marketing in New Zealand

Is the $200 million-plus direct sales economy retail by another name or something different? Regardless, what can we learn from it?

 
 

A spectrum of retailers

  • Opinion
  • April 18, 2019
  • David Farrell
A spectrum of retailers

In recognition of April being Autism Awareness Month, retail commentator Dave Farrell considers the role of those on the spectrum in retail.

Read more
 

How on-trend is your retail business?

  • Sponsored Content
  • April 18, 2019
  • Sponsored content
How on-trend is your retail business?

New insights from Visa highlight five evolving trends emerging from savvy retailers around the world. We’ve taken these global trends and looked at how they are playing out with merchants in New Zealand, and we’d now like to hear what you think of them.

Read more
 
Next page
Results for
Topics
Jobs
About us.

The Register provides essential industry news and intelligence, updated daily. And the digital newsletter delivers the latest news to your inbox twice a week — for free!

©2009–2015 Tangible Media. All rights reserved.
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy policy.

Advertise
The Register

editor@theregister.co.nz

Content marketing/advertising? Email anita.hayhoe@icg.co.nz or call 022 639 3004

View Media Kit

}