Ex-Asos entrepreneur says new venture can become world’s leading menswear brand

Menswear startup The Idle Man says it is hoping to become the “default brand” for men’s fashion as it aims to “fill the void” left by fashion brand’s over-reliance on womenswear.

The etailer works by curating different looks for men while providing a service that sends out personalised monthly packages of clothes to its male shoppers. It also offers an online magazine section with clothing guides and lifestyle features, and offers free returns.

Despite only launching last September, the Idle Man – which was founded by former Asos buyer Oliver Tezcan – launched its first-ever TV campaign yesterday (September 27) as it sponsors 4Music programming between 9pm to 12pm. Each of the four ads each feature a different male and a rundown of their potential outfit combinations.

The brand also recently secured more than £1.25m of investment through crowd funding site Crowdcube after its total number of transactions increased by 195% and its average order value by 72% over July and August. The Idle Man previously failed to secure investment during an appearance on BBC’s Dragon’s Den.

Speaking to Marketing Week, Tezcan says the brand is aiming to become an international player.

“If you go into a high street store, menswear is always hidden away in the basement as women drive footfall and that’s also been translated to online with male clothing often playing second fiddle,” he explained.

“You have the likes of Mr Porter but they price out a lot of younger males so we want to appeal to the average mid-20s male who lacks the confidence to put together his own outfit due to market saturation and help him to dress well.”

Screenshot 3
For its first TV campaign The Idle Man is sponsoring evening 4Music programming. Advertising consultancy Beyond, which sits within MG OMD, oversaw the entire campaign.

According to Tezcan, fashion brands such as Topman and Asos are too preoccupied with celebrity endorsements and international markets, which often leaves male shoppers isolated.

He added: “Asos is chasing Australia and Germany and trialling all sorts of pointless applications. We’re only interested in offering a tailored product range that feels unique.

“When you launch a female clothing brand you have to align yourself with a celebrity but bar David Beckham there are not any male celebs who significantly drive traffic. We want to create brand authority by instead focusing on how to achieve unique, culturally relevant looks.”

One way The Idle Man is achieving this strategy is by offering tailored outfits inspired by Straight Outta Compton, the hip hop biopic of rap group NWA.

Tezcan concludes: “There is a global opportunity here and the playing field is wide open. Around 20% of our revenues are now beyond the UK and that’s without doing any marketing outside our home market.

“The indication is there is an appetite across Europe and the US for our brand. We think we can become the default choice for men’s fashion at an accessible level. Womenswear has plenty of outfit curation but menswear doesn’t so we’re a truly unique brand.”

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