Most fashion professionals have crossed paths with industry vet Joshua Reed at one point or another during their career. So he’s taking his years of knowledge and officially consulting with the launch of J. Reed Consulting Group. Reed’s new company will be full service offering help with company management, enterprise digital marketing, advertising, operations, event planning, branding, creative services, public relations, and talent partnerships. What’s his plan? He fills us in!
You’ve been in the fashion industry for a long time. Refresh us on your professional background.
Yes, 20 years now! My first job was in advertising at David Yurman, which lead me to Kinney + Kinsella, a PR and creative agency, working on luxury brands like Roberto Coin and Jaeger LeCoultre. After that, I worked at LaForce+Stevens for five years on Target, Perry Ellis, Reebok, Victorinox Swiss Army amongst others. Calvin Klein had just been sold to PVH and Ted Stafford was leaving the Men’s PR director job after a long time to go to GQ. I took over his position and a few year’s later handled the men’s celebrity as well at Calvin Klein.
After working as a talent endorsement agent for a year, I launched Gents, a men’s accessories and lifestyle brand, which was sold to Ridge Capital in 2016. I started consulting after that and my first client became an exclusive two year gig, conceiving and launching the women’s brand, Land of Distraction.
Why did you decide to get into consulting?
I learned so much being able to work with such great global brands my whole career and then even more launching two new brands. I wanted to utilize my experience sharing other brands and business, what worked great — as well as mistakes I made that could be prevented.
Tell us a little bit about your business partner Aleksandar Sasha Jovicic and how you met.
I was looking for a great enterprise digital agency. I’ve had repeated challenges on this in the past. I was asking everyone I knew in fashion and realized I wasn’t the only one facing this issue. So I went beyond fashion and was referred to Aleksandar and Executive Digital. He’s a 23-year veteran in this space — this is pre-Google we are talking about. As the former managing director of SEO for Gannett Corp (USA Today), he was responsible with developing, creating programs for and growing the world’s largest digital media agency, and as he left the media space, his decision to focus on true, enterprise digital marketing with Executive Digital was the right choice.
He is responsible for over 24 billion dollars in provable revenue for his clients over the last two decades. We started working together on various clients and I finally found that digital piece and was seeing proven results every time. I wanted to expand beyond fashion and he wanted to bring their digital solutions to the fashion world, so we formed a partnership that made sense all around.
What should brands be looking for when looking for a digital agency to work with?
As many years of experience as possible, no outsourced work, a wide variety of full time experts amongst every category — SEO, influencer, social, analytics, PPC and social advertising — across the board. Most importantly, results — attaining your goals whether it is increased impressions, website visitors, and/or increasing sales and revenues. Seeing ROI and brand growth are critical, with full transparency.
Where will you be based?
We have six offices in the US (NYC, Florida, Arizona, Texas, Michigan and North Carolina), and three internationally (Serbia, UAE and Pakistan). But we can do what we do from anywhere.
What do you think your area of expertise is?
True, strategic search engine optimization, social media, content creation and digital ecosystems development in aligning with all other marketing and operational components producing a highly effective and results-oriented business model. Innovating brand strategies by merging digital and all business operations in synergy.
The industry has changed a lot in recent years. What mistakes are brands making in your opinion?
I can’t speak for other brands, but I do know many other brands are facing the same challenges I had, which was not only finding an affordable and competent digital partner, but putting those digital dollars in the right places and having a cohesive strategy beyond just digital that aligns with the rest of the company, and then seeing results.