Insights into the FabFit Academy
“This course will help you connect deeper with your customers by assessing and then filling their need. It will make your customers come back for more!” – Laura Burke, Bare Necessities Director of Customer Service.
Q&A with Ali Cudby, founder of the FabFit Academy.
Ali, could you give our readers who aren’t familiar with the FabFit Academy some insights about your certification program?
After I wrote my bestselling book Busted! The Fab Foundations Guide to Bras that Fit, Flatter and Feel Fantastic, a lot of lingerie professionals wanted more. They wanted to see examples of fit on the body and really dig into the fit formula that I lay out in the book. I believe that women don’t have a bra size because there are too many difference in fit from brand to brand, and even within a brand, from bra to bra. So the goal is to stop focusing on measuring as a tool to yield “a size” and start focusing on how a bra actually fits a body.
There was also no way for retailers to signal to their customers that they know fit. Since Oprah, everyone claims to be an expert fitter – I heard a lot of retailers say they wanted a way to show their community that they had real knowledge in fitting.
Who is the FabFit Academy for? How are the classes structured?
As lingerie professionals, we all face the challenge of training in bra fitting. It’s an art and a science – and that means it can take a lot of time to learn. Retailers need to learn how to do fittings properly when they first open. They need to train their employees in fit- which can be time consuming and inefficient. Manufacturers need to understand fit for their garments. Seeing now different bras fit a wide range of bodies is critical to understanding how a bra will fit an array of customers. And then there are internal sales teams, who are out there talking to their retailers about bras, but are not always trained themselves in fitting techniques. It’s incredibly important for everyone in the industry!
We’ve talked about the impact of a bra fitting experience on an individual, could you talk about how a bra fitting experience impacts a lingerie business’ bottom line?
In today’s social media age, a single bad customer experience can be broadcasted like never before. You don’t just lose that person’s sales, you lose their friends, their entire social network, and all of Yelp.
On the other hand, a transformational experience can create a virtual cycle a lingerie business. People talk it, tweet it, post it and pin it. One great fitting can yield viral sales that pay dividends for years! In my opinion, lingerie businesses can’t afford to risk a single bad customer experience, especially when the opportunity to turn it around can pay back in such a big way. It’s not about a single sale – think of the lifetime value of a single thrilled customer!
Above: Video still from the FabFit Academy
“It’s the best thing I’ve ever done for myself as a participant in the lingerie industry.” – blogger, SweetNothingNYC.
Could you give us examples of how the FabFit Academy can help retailers and brands?
When I trained the Bare Necessities team, one of the things they loved most was an ability to see fit across a wide array of brands, not just focusing on a single brand. “Brand agnostic” training doesn’t really exist elsewhere in our industry and it makes a critical difference in understanding how to look at product and select the best bra for a given customer.
For brands, it’s an opportunity to have their merchandise showcased in a unique way. More importantly, the brands spend so much time crafting beautiful, well fitting product. They don’t benefit if the people who sell it are uninformed on fit. It’s important to have consistent, efficient fit training across the whole industry. I have also begun working with manufacturers directly to help bring their product message to retailers and am excited to start rolling out those videos soon!
As busy retailers or designers, some of our readers might be worried about the time commitment for a program like yours. Could you tell us how the program is structured and how it can work on any schedule?
It’s designed to be incredibly flexible. There are six modules, all online. You can take them whenever and wherever you have an Internet connection. Each module is about an hour, and there are straightforward tools to reinforce the learning for each module. At the end, there’s a hands-on practical component that can also be done on your own time. This class has been successful across the world – from the US to Australia to the Middle East. It’s designed to work on your schedule.
Could you share with us any success stories from former students?
“Anyone selling bras should enroll in the FabFit Academy. It will give them the full scope, from the parts of the bra to how it should fit and all body types. This course will help you connect deeper with your customers by assessing and then filling their need. It will make your customers come back for more!” Laura Burke, Bare Necessities Director of Customer Service
“It’s the best thing I’ve ever done for myself as a participant in the lingerie industry. I can say “I have experience with bra fitting and a tremendous amount of hands-on, practical knowledge”, Ali is knowledgeable and inspiring, and the class is comprehensive and challenging. I think it should be a requirement for anyone who claims to be a lingerie fitter.” – SweetNothingNYC
“It really is a must for anyone considering working in the bra fitting industry. The FabFit Academy is an intensive course in understanding the importance of proper bra fitting and why it makes such a difference in so many women’s lives. Enrollment in the FabFit Academy, should be considered mandatory training for all boutiques and department stores who promote themselves as “bra fitters”. There may not be an industry standard when it comes to measuring women for bras, but there should be an industry standard on how the next generation of fitters are taught. I’ve been a professional bra fitter for years…now I have the certification to back it up!” Laura, The Ivory Corset, Andover MA
How much time is left to sign up for the next round of classes?
I’m holding a few spots open for your readers for one more week, so at the risk of sounding like an infomercial, Act Now!
How to register?
Sign up for the FabFit Academy HERE.