“There is often an assumption that ‘sustainable’ can’t live in mainstream fashion. JOOR helped us break into the wholesale space in such a way that we can compete with ‘normal’ brands and truly go mainstream. That’s a good thing for Tribe Alive--and a good sign for fashion in general.” -- Hannah Paul, Brand Development Associate, Sales and Ethics, Tribe Alive.
Tribe Alive measures success through impact rather than profit. The sustainable apparel and accessories brand gives women globally the means to sustain their families and build their communities through its manufacture and marketing of handmade designs. Tribe Alive’s unique business model values the needs of the environment and the artisans as much as the needs of the consumer. Through its alternative example of success, the Fort Worth, Texas-based company hopes it may inspire others to follow a similar path.
When Hannah Paul first joined Tribe Alive as Brand Development Associate in June of 2018, the company was outsourcing its wholesale business through multiple showrooms--and getting mixed results. “With a sustainable brand, especially a brand like ours with such a particular mission, story is an essential part of the product--and getting it right is crucial,” she explained. “Of course, we want our customers to love the designs, but they are buying more than that--they are buying the chance for our artisans in Haiti, Guatemala, India and Honduras to help their families and communities.” Tribe Alive realized the best plan of action would be to bring wholesale in house, so the mission could be explained directly from the team. And they understood that wholesale success depended on finding a way to consistently communicate the brand’s story--and on doing it at scale.
While looking for alternative approaches to this outsourcing, Hannah had little time to conduct outreach to drive growth. Not only that, as part of a small and growing company, she lacked time to create and scale basic tools like linesheets, and reports she would need to build an internal wholesale process. Frustrated with having to take reactive steps, like leaving lookbooks with potential buyers, she wanted a more strategic and streamlined course.
A fashion merchandising professor from a local university in Fort Worth, TX recommended that Hannah, a former student at the university, look into JOOR. Hannah requested a demo, and got more than just a thorough explanation of JOOR’s platform--she learned more about the broader aspects of the wholesale industry, including a motivational plan to help launch Tribe Alive’s wholesale market initiative. “I still remember the first time I got off the phone with our Account Executive, Cassi, I felt empowered that I now truly understood that part of the business,” she recalled.
"Overall in all of our experiences with JOOR, the support has consistently been above and beyond."
Brand Development Associate, Hannah Paul from Tribe Alive
And working with JOOR solved Tribe Alive’s messaging challenge. “Moving our wholesale business online with the platform gave us the ability to host our videos in our brand profile. And this means we can now clearly and compellingly explain everything that goes into the making of ethical, slow fashion,” says Hannah. Video topics have included: how political unrest can delay production deadlines, how the company’s team of artisans keep a 7-hour workday, and why variations in handmade pieces are to be expected--and valued.
The ability to automate line sheet creation, order capture, report compilation, and many aspects of communication-- such as sending bulk emails and ‘cancel/replace’ options--also changed the brand’s wholesale game. “With these tools, we could increase outreach and orders without increasing the time our team had to put in,” explained Hannah. “And I love being able to see everything easily in one place. With Snapshot, we have an easy to understand and live view of all of our top selling items. Thanks to this dashboard and JOOR’s reporting capabilities, we are able to forecast for the first time, which is extremely helpful--especially considering our longer production cycles.”
By giving Tribe Alive a whole new platform to grow its business, JOOR has played a key role in helping the company succeed in its mission.
Over a 9 month period after signing up with JOOR, Tribe Alive saw:
- 200% growth
- 29 new retail partners
- and put 90% of its wholesale growth into expanding its business with local artisans, that would ultimately lead to providing long term social and economic benefits around the world
“Whether you are a small and growing company like ours, or a larger established brand, JOOR can provide the customer support and smart efficiencies needed to turn the opportunity of online into wholesale growth,” Hannah shares.
To learn how you can bring these benefits to your business, request a demo here.