5 Easy Ways to Keep up with Market Trends

As an emerging designer, it's important to stay on top of a variety of market trends. While that's probably easier said than done with a busy entrepreneur's schedule, stepping outside of your day-to-day work flow to understand what’s going on is good for several reasons. It will help you stay relevant, inspired, close to the competition and well-versed when you speak to retailers and press.
Here are 5 easy ways to keep up with fashion trends:
1. Shop the market
In-store visits can provide invaluable intel for your business and is an exercise you should do often. In addition to new product offerings each season, the in-store retail landscape is changing with new technologies and merchandising stories. This is your opportunity to touch and examine products and also talk with sales associates about what's working and what's not while you scope out your competition and category leaders. And, if it's a store where you see your business, then it's absolutely essential. 
2. Connect with industry and consumer resources
There are so many industry resources at your disposal,  so it's important to connect with the ones that will provide you with the most relevant information. Bookmarking their website, subscribing to their newsletter, liking them on Facebook or one of their other social channels are just a few ways to stay close to the news. Resources like WWD, the Wall Street Journal,  the New York Times and the Business of Fashion are a must, but be sure to consider topics like entrepreneurship, lifestyle, design and local outlets that will keep you in the know. 
3. Subscribe to newsletters
One easy way to stay on top of trends, marketing, and retail is to subscribe to newsletters from a variety of brands. You'll be able to see how they are talking to customers, frequency of messages, how they are marketing products, when they put items on sale and how they feature trends.  
4. Schedule reading days
Scheduling reading days are a good way to get caught up on articles and books that you've meaning to read. With this time set aside, you can focus and learn without distraction. 
5. Leverage Twitter 
Whether you're on Twitter or not, know that it can be a valuable information tool. A quick scroll through your  feed allows you to get caught up on the latest news, see what's trending and stay connected with experts and industry contacts. Plus, if you are trying to build relationships with others, it's a great way to find out more information about someone, support their work while getting a dose of their expertise.   
With all of this information, it's also important to ask what are the implications for my business. Is it a trend you can leverage, a resource to contact or information that can impact your product?

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