The COVID-19 crisis is tough on DTC fashion. The recovery may be worse

Direct-to-consumer fashion isn’t the only industry hurt by the coronavirus crisis. But it is one of the few where the biggest challenge is yet to come.

Fashion’s woes today are well documented. For example, the very nature of fashion makes it impossible to simply hold on to inventory until the economy recovers. Fashion, by definition, consists of things that go out of fashion. So predictably retailers are struggling now to unload merchandise that grows less desirable each day. But with stores closed and online shopping limited to essentials, fashionable items are piling up in warehouses.

Combine that with the retail apocalypse in brick and mortar that existed before COVID-19, and fashion retail would seem to be in tough shape.

Given all that, it might appear that DTC fashion will be well-positioned when the coronavirus crisis ends. Conventional wisdom would suggest that a world with far fewer brick-and-mortar competitors is an environment in which DTC fashion could recover quickly.

But conventional wisdom is wrong. Because after the plague, comes a purge.

At <intent> we believe that when the coronavirus crisis ends, DTC fashion’s troubles will get worse in the short-term.

The battle ahead in DTC fashion

Here’s why: every company in the space will look to come back into the market strong. There will be a short window in which DTC fashion companies can upend the status quo in their sector. The stakes will be high. Win now, and you will prosper for a long time. Stumble, and you have nothing to fall back on. Many, many companies won’t survive. And everyone knows it.

The post-COVID battle for market share will be intense. Digital advertising in particular is going to be an insane asylum. We’ll see bids unlike anything we’ve seen before as desperate companies compete for eyeballs and conversions before it’s too late.

The only way to compete in an environment like that is to

  1. have enormously deep pockets so that you can handle paying too much for a long time, or
  2. use every possible tool to develop more sophisticated approaches to customer acquisition, ad retargeting, etc.

So look, we’d like to help if you’ll let us.

We’re offering a 30 day free pilot of a product we call <intent> Target. It adds a layer of machine-learning sophistication on top of your marketing efforts. It is exactly the weapon you’ll need in the fight to come.

No payments are due until after your 90 day test and you’ve decided the product works for you. If you decide after 30 days that you don’t like it, you don’t owe us a penny.

Interested? Just drop us a line at and we’ll make it happen.