Oak & Stone Clothing Co. was born to fill a vital gap in the market; menswear which is tailored to fit athletic body shapes. Its founder, Ricardo Aviles, tells us about the challenges of being an upcoming online brand, and how custom packaging is the key to offering a memorable customer experience that keeps customers coming back for more.

Ricardo Aviles’ label is the product of personal experience - that as an athlete, well-fitting and stylish clothing is extremely hard to come by. Rather than writing this off as something to put up with, he decided to create a solution to this need. Despite having no formal background in fashion or how to create a brand, Ricardo was inspired to start a clothing line which envisioned athletes as its main customer base.

“Being an athlete myself, I’ve struggled for a long time to find clothing that fits well. Modern menswear is simply not designed for the athlete. So, Oak & Stone Clothing was birthed to fill that need for athletes everywhere. This company is only a few months old but we have seen amazing momentum already. We've had the honor of working with multiple professional athletes from the NFL, MLB and even an Olympian. Also, we are honored to announce that we will be gracing the pages of British GQ this summer. It seems insane that we've come this far in such a short period but I believe it is proof that our concept was worth pursuing.”

Building an eCommerce Brand

Oak & Stone shirt laid out on custom tissue paper

Cohesive style and branding is a vital ingredient for success in the fashion industry. Your collections should be an extension of your philosophy, as this makes it much easier for your customer base to build a relationship with your brand. Ricardo’s approach to Oak & Stone Clothing was a relatively simple one - that every garment, and by extension its custom packaging, should be designed to reflect the essence of the brand:

“For collection one, we’ve really focused on drawing from natural elements for inspiration. With our very name being Oak & Stone, nature was a big influence for us. The first design we came up with was ‘The Essential L/S’. It is the physical embodiment of the brand, with its wood buttons and stone-colored fabric. It's also one of our most popular designs and one that we are really proud of!”

Pro tip: Interested in more fashion branding tips? Check out our article on launching a fashion brand over on our blog!

Boosting the customer experience through custom packaging

Oak & Stone Clothing Instagram feed

But being a new brand in a saturated market is never easy. It takes more than a great product to stand from the pack. This was one of the biggest difficulties for Oak & Stone Clothing as an online-only brand. Without a physical presence, creating a memorable customer experience can be challenging. Yet it is the customer experience which is the key to being more than just another face in your industry. In eCommerce, consumers are faced with a dizzying number of vendors. So, they are actively looking for reasons they should support you over your competitors.

Oak & Stone Shirt with custom tissue paper

Due to shipping large quantities of online orders, custom packaging serves as a powerful post-purchase marketing strategy for Oak & Stone Clothing. Because it’s the first time that customers will get to interact with their purchase, packaging is guaranteed to receive maximum engagement. As a value-added extra, it helps their garments to channel a more luxury feel. This point of difference from a regular eCommerce delivery ensures a more positive customer experience, which in turn helps customers to forge a more personal connection with the brand:

“Choosing noissue was a no-brainer. They instantly impressed us their insanely easy-to-use website and customization, and their pricing was incredible. Our packaging was incredibly important to us - being an online brand, we don't have a brick and mortar store to provide a customer experience. So, we knew one of the ways to impress our customers was with well thought-out packaging that could provide that special experience.”