Tory Burch On Authenticity (SPOILER ALERT: When You’re Authentic You Don’t Have To Reinvent The Wheel)

When you’re authentic, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel.

There are a lot of people who do the same thing as you.

It doesn’t matter WHAT you do, there are others doing it to.

And that means:

There is a market for what you do.

And you have competition. Horray!

What? Hooray for competition?

Competition provides variety & choice in the marketplace for both you – and the customer.

Consider this. What if you were the only yoga teacher in the world?

You would have to try to please everybody, teach every style, hear complaints when you didn’t teach a particular style, and basically be teaching round the clock so you could accommodate everyone.

There wouldn’t even be time to plot world domination, go shopping or eat cake.

The secret awesome side of competition is that it forces you to create.

To develop a speciality. To expand on who you are – and build your business around that.

You don’t have to reinvent yoga, or any industry or business to succeed.

But you do have to give your business a unique twist so that it’s a reflection of you – and your natural tendencies, your quirks, your obsessions, your freakish excitement.

Sure, you could create a brand based on illusion. Think of the career brand Ellen Tracy.

There’s no real career girl named Ellen Tracy behind the brand. And there also isn’t there the same kind of cult-like devotion to the brand that Tory Burch receives.

Tory Burch is the QUEEN of easy-to-wear, versatile separates – each piece designed to match seamlessly with the rest of the collection.

With clear colors, clean lines, and with just a hint of bohemian detail, the clothes reflect exactly who Tory is: Preppy Deluxe.

Okay, there are lots of clothing lines out there doing the preppy bohemian thing, and at a similar mid-range price point. It’s a super-competitive niche in the super-competitive fashion arena.

And one that Tory nails – building a 3 billion dollar lifestyle company in less than 10 years.

It’s not just that everything Tory creates has that same easy, fresh, sumptuous feel to it – from the design of her website, right down to the specially designed zipper on her clothes.

And it’s not just that she designs clothes that she would wear herself.

HINT: Create what you want to see in the world.

It’s that she brings her authentic self to every aspect of her brand.

Tory considers herself a storyteller – and her stories are about family.

It starts with her family, particularly her stylish, globetrotting parents – who were her original muses -and remain so to this day.

But the story Tory is telling isn’t exclusively about her family – she broadens her scope to include the ideal customers for her line. Stylish family women who want a touch of bohemian luxury in their lives.

Check out her new book. Even the cover is totally Tory.

(It’s the only fashion book I own on my iPad, and shockingly the experience is exquisite.)

Tory even has a foundation for women entrepreneurs. And a reliable source told me that she wouldn’t allow investors to bankroll her company if they didn’t believe in her foundation. Serious dedication to her brand!

That’s because Tory cares about women and their families – and of course! their desire for bohemian/preppy chic. She built that authenticity right into her brand.

: It’s in her carefully crafted emails.

: It’s in her Instagram feed.

: It’s on her website.

Her Pinterest boards, and her heavily visual blog – all carefully edited to make it inclusive.

Say she’s posting a picture of her home – she’s not posting a view of her $16 million Hamptons estate, she’s showing you a sumptuous bouquet of flowers decorating her table.

Tory’s true desire to be a hostess invites you right in – like the two of you have been besties forever.

Just like COCO CHANEL, Tory Burch’s influence will be around for centuries. She’s created a legacy based on her tastes & influences & values.

No one can tell Tory who she is – and better yet? No one can tell Tory how to shape her billion dollar brand.

Again I say.

When you’re authentic, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. 


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