Image Consultant Alessandra Boaro talks about fashion and retail in digital age and some insider tips where to eat and hang out when in Milan.
What is the future of retail in the digital age? What can shops do to survive?
Tsitaliya Mircheva is a mother, an entrepreneur, a fashion enthusiast and the founder, and art director, of Mum in Heels. A Creative Content Studio dedicated to transforming ideas and concepts into fascinating stories that can convey a message.
She came to Milan in July and met Alessandra Boaro to talk about retail, the digital world, Milanese fashion and lifestyle.
The article tells about their chat and some useful tips about the city. Enjoy!
This time, however, my trip to Milan had a specific purpose. Not that I don’t take spending time with myself and having fun as a good enough reason to travel, but, on this occasion, I also wanted to meet some local brands and people from the fashion industry with whom I wanted to work.
One of them was Alessandra Boaro, Biz Image consultant and coach, and CEO and Founder of Style for Success, a consulting agency that trains the personnel of fashion brands, luxury restaurants, and beauty salons how to communicate and build relationships with their customers.
Here’s part of our conversation:
Tsitaliya: Alessandra, how did you end up working in fashion?
Alessandra: I graduated in economics and, immediately after graduating, I started working in the marketing departments of several multinational companies, but soon I realized that this job was not for me. I came into contact with the retail world thanks to work experience in a footwear brand, where I was store manager for a year and a half. I learned so many things! I learned how important it is to know the product; how to convey trust and reliability to the customer; how to manage sales; how to manage personnel; what it means to manage a store — all experiences that still help me a lot today! That made me get a little more serious about fashion and I did a master’s degree in fashion and luxury management. I worked in retail and, finally, I knew exactly what I wanted.
Tsitaliya: How has retail changed in the last 5–10 years, especially with online shopping coming onto the scene?
Alessandra: Retail has changed more in the last 5 years than in the previous 50! Thanks to online shopping and social networks, the buying habits of customers have changed. Many people think that physical stores are disappearing because of online shopping, but I don’t agree at all. Online and offline can live together; they are two sides of the same coin. Brands can use both channels to communicate their value with customers. It is up to the brand to choose the channel through which it can reach its customers. One channel does not exclude the other. I think there will always be someone who will buy in the store for different reasons: the pleasure of interaction with people and sales consultants in the stores, being able to touch the product, being able to experience the atmosphere of their favourite brand, etc.