Saturday, December 14, 2013

Amanda's Fashion Spot Chats with Sean Snyder of Trend Trunk PLUS a Special Gift for YOU!


As a graduate with honours from George Brown College's Fashion Business Industry, an in-depth program that educates their students on the business side of the fashion industry with a specific focus on how to become an entrepreneur for a fashion-based business, I always enjoy learning about entrepreneurs who are passionate, self-starters with a dream. Learning the stories behind the businesses of entrepreneurs is something that has always excited me and I am happy to share one of the stories with you today.

Enter Trend Trunk. You have read about the company here, you have watched them on T.V. and now here is my interview with Sean Snyder, the founder of the company that allows you to "make money, save money and look good doing it!"

1. How did you get involved in the fashion industry?

I get that question a lot being a male running a company that is focussed mainly around females. Trend Trunk evolved from an existing gift card exchange company. The idea was that our customers could swap a gift card that they weren't going to use for another type of gift card. We found that our customers were mainly swapping fashion-related gift cards because they are very particular. It got us thinking of a new direction that we could take the business. After doing a little bit of research, we found that there were no other companies doing this in Canada, exclusively for fashion. So the idea of having a consumer-to-consumer marketplace exclusively for fashion was born. We built Trend Trunk from the gift card exchange company's platform, so it was a smoother transition than if we had to build it from scratch. 

2. What is Trend Trunk?

Trend Trunk is a social marketplace where you can buy, sell and, donate amazing new and pre-loved fashion in a fun and simple way. Our aim is to inspire and collaborate with the fashion-minded and budget-conscious community in a trustworthy environment. We believe that one person's lonely wardrobe is another's true love! If you've got items you're not in love with anymore, you can 'cash in your closet' and use those funds to shop a user's closet whose style you love, donate those funds to your favourite charity, or get the funds deposited directly into your back account. 

Trend Trunk aims to help you:

  • Make money by cashing in your closet of all those stylish and fashionable items you have tucked away,
  • Save money by shopping fellow member's closets full of brand new to pre-loved styles they love,
and look good doing it!

3. Who is Trend Trunk's target audience?

Our marketplace is complex and growing rapidly. We are targeting both the trendy women who are looking for a great deal on a new look and the high-end fashionable women. Our focal point is women ages 18-40 years old.

4. How do Trend trunk users benefit from using the service?

Our marketplace is two-sided. We have both buyers and sellers. The buyers are looking for a great deal on fashion without the high retail cost. they can choose from items that are brand new with tags or items that have been slightly used. Most of our items range from 40-60% off retail. The sellers are looking to make some extra money from the items they have previously purchased. They can feel good knowing that their item is going to a good home and earn some additional income in the process. 

One of our customers told us a story about a purchase on Trend Trunk. She purchased a brand new Coach purse for 60% of the value. When she received it, there was a personal note inside the purse thanking her for giving the purse a new home along with some various beauty products as an added bonus. We love hearing stories like this.

Our perfect customer is someone who makes money on the sale of their items while finding a great deal on items to replace them. We've made it extremely simple for our members to do this from their account balance.

5. Trend trunk is expanding. Describe some of these expansions.

  • Trend Trunk App: We wanted to give our members easy access to Trend Trunk wherever they might be throughout their day. In the next few weeks, we are unveiling our app that will be available on both Apple and Android devices.
  •  Runway Valet: A service that Trend Trunk offers to consumers that have too many clothes to sell and are too busy to manage the sales process. Through Runway Valet our members can select a local stylist on Trend Trunk who is in their area. The Stylist will pick up their items and manage the entire sales process for them. When the items sell, members will get money deposited directly into their bank account making the process very easy.
  • The Shoppes At Trend Trunk: In response to our members growing demand for selection, we are creating exclusive boutiques for retailers and designers to showcase their brands to our rapidly expanding membership. One challenge we find is that most of our items are one of a kind and if a particular item is not the right size, colour or is already sold, then our members don't make a purchase. Boutiques and designers can solve this challenge for us by enabling them to list multiple items and while creating an additional sales and marketing channel for them.

6. Will the upcoming Runway Valet service come at an additional cost to Trend trunk users?

Users that select to use our Runway Valet service will retain 50% of the value of their items. We positioned this service to be on par or better than going to a consignment store with much more added convenience and a larger marketplace.

7. How will Trend Trunk users benefit from the upcoming, "The Shoppes at Trend Trunk"?

From the added selection of brand new items. We have a lot shoes on our site that women lust but cannot purchase because they don't fit properly. This should solve these issues. 

8. What boutiques and/or designers will be participating in "The Shoppes at Trend Trunk"?

We have some designers that were already selling items on Trend Trunk that are participating and also we've expanded to some other retailers. I cannot reveal them at this point as we have not launched yet and some are still coming onboard. We are anticipating 20 or more Shoppes to launch with and to grow that rapidly throughout next year.

9. Describe Trend Trunk's experience on Dragon's Den.

I was very nervous about how the Dragons were going to react after I jumped out of the closet. Luckily, they were receptive to it and it caught their attention. My actual business pitch was about 30 minutes however they only showed about two minutes of it. I had a great feeling of pride and excitement to have had the opportunity to present my business in front of some of Canada's most successful entrepreneurs. 

We closed a deal with Kevin O'Leary for fifty percent of our company in exchange for $200, 000 of equity in our business. That is what they showed on T.V. What really happens is that only one of every ten deals on the show actually gets finalized. You can imagine that making a six-figure business deal in twenty minutes is not reality. After going through the post show negotiations, the offer ultimately wasn't a good fit. We decided to put our current and future customers in the Dragons' chair and have started a crowdfunding campaign in order to raise the necessary funds to take Trend Trunk the next level.

We are asking the public to help fund us while giving them some excellent rewards in the process. You can find out more about it here: https://www.trendtrunk.com/Dragons-Den.

10. Further explain the "Be the Dragon" campaign.

Because the deal didn't materialize with Kevin we thought of some creative ways in which we could raise money ourselves. The thought was to launch our own crowdfunding campaign the day we aired on Dragons' Den. People watching the show would come to our website to see what Kevin invested in and would be brought to our "Be the Dragon" campaign page. We asked them to sit in the Dragons' chair and help us raise funds to take Trend Trunk to the next level.

11. Describe what you find to be the most rewarding thing about being the founder of Trend Trunk.

I am amazed at the great partnerships we have built with little or no financial incentives and marketing budget. Everyday I have people telling me how great of an idea Trend Trunk is and thanking us for all the help we are providing. I find it rewarding to be able to build cross-promotional partnerships with women-related businesses giving win-win marketing situations.

As a BIG THANK YOU to my wonderful Amanda's Fashion Spot readers, I would like to offer all of you a Trend Trunk mystery gift card to shop the closets on Trend Trunk! All you have to do is enter your email address. Once you have done that, you will receive an unique pin code that once redeemed on www.TrendTrunk.com  you will then find out the value of your mystery gift card and that value can be used towards any purchase on www.TrendTrunk.com

Fortunately, there is no limit to the amount of mystery gift card that can be redeemed however only one gift card can be used per email address. This is a great gift for the holidays that you can share with your friends, fashion lovers or treat yourself! So get that mystery gift card that may be worth up to $250! Click on the words mystery gift card to get your mystery gift card !

<a href="http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=gTAReSNgmzA&offerid=266842.28&type=3&subid=0">mystery gift card</a> <IMG border="0" width="1" height="1" src="http://ad.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/show?id=gTAReSNgmzA&bids=266842.28&type=3&subid=0">

Be sure to get some shopping done during www.BloggerFashionWeek.comwhere you can shop the closets of stylish bloggers on Trend Trunk! #BFW

Thank you reading my interview. Let me know what you think of Trend Trunk in the comments below, Facebook and Twitter! Also, don't forget to check out Amanda's Fashion Spot on Pinterest and Instagram!

Enjoy!

Amanda
amandasfashionspot@gmail.com
Twitter: @AFSpot
Pinterest: AFSpot 
Instagram: AFSpot
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