In this issue of ASIAN VOICE, we welcome HANAKA from Indonesia. Simplicity, teamwork, and timelessness are three things it values the most, which perfectly fit in the main concept of the brand: To be simple and classic. It is here for a long time, not just a good time.
Nana: Why did you initially create the brand and name it “HANAKA”?
HANAKA：The name “Hanaka” itself comes from the combined name of the founders, who is a couple named Jeffri HANdoyo and Putri PiNAKA. And the story of the brand is back in 2013, we started off the business carrying a concept we called “Simple & Classic”. Our intention is to make an impact in the local fashion industries. On that time, the concept “Simple & Classic” on clothing brand were hardly found on our locality. So, there we were, filling the gaps. With that knowledge in hand, we dived in full force and realized it has high potential for growth on the market. Slowly, we begin to earn the consumer attentions and here we are now.
Nana: What is something that HANAKA value the most?
Creating a brand that simply have a clear and straightforward communication through everything that is associated in our brand, including logo, designs, concepts, customer relations, and everything in between.
In Hanaka, we create an environment where all team members are involved, work together and
creating a sense of family, so that everyone pulls in the exact same direction and understand
that they are part of the journey.
To create such a sustainable brand while fashion trends and market can change with time, to
accompany our customers during all of their life moments. Because we are here for a long time,
not just a good time.
Nana: What has influenced the creation of the brand and the pieces designed for your brand?
HANAKA: The things that influenced us are mostly our experiences and our surroundings. And yes, for us culture is also one of the most important aspects of our everyday lives and it play a primary role in influencing the design of our product. But, we think the most important thing on creating a product is knowing what needs our target market has that we can help with.
Nana: Can you tell us about some of the most challenging experiences you have had during the process of building your brand?
HANAKA: Our first most challenging experiences is the start. How to be able to introduce customers to
our brand, because we learn that people prefer brands they already know and trust. Then, how to attract attention, because at the time we start, people still unfamiliar with our concept.
And the second one is the global pandemic. Last year, we were forced to close our retail stores for a while due to the city mandate requiring all nonessential businesses to close. It’s uniquely difficult challenge for us because we were tested in our ability to act and adapt quickly. We had to find ways to change our operating models, come up with different strategies to keep business going, but also had to adapt to changed consumer behaviors and find opportunities in times of crisis. It’s like we were forced to sink or swim.
Nana: How do you come up and decide on the themes for your collections?
HANAKA: Most of the time we usually came up with literally anything that’s around us. But sometimes we also have to analyze and research the market to help understanding trends that come and go and behaviors that are on the rise.
Nana: Is it possible to let readers know a little about your next drop (collection)? If so, what has inspired the theme and the pieces in them?
HANAKA: We are currently doing a special collection to celebrate our 9th anniversary and it will be called “The Capsule Nostalgia”.
Nana: In what way do you use social media as a platform to deliver your products and designs?
HANAKA: For us, social media is a huge essential piece of our marketing strategy. It helps to show that your brand is trustworthy, knowledgeable, and approachable. When you get people see and. talk about your brand or products on social media, you just build brand awareness and credibility. And better brand awareness means better results with all your other campaigns. And that set yourself up for more sales. It also boosted our visibility among potential customers and wider audience, including international markets.
Nana: Is there a particular artist, movie, place, book that you would recommend our readers to check for inspiration?
HANAKA: For books, we personally would recommend ‘Damn Good Advice (For People with Talent!)’ by George Lois. Each page offers fresh insight of creative motivation and personal development.
And for places, of course we would recommend our fascinating island, Bali. It is much more than just a happening destination, it is home to many traditional cultural traditions and every kind of natural beauty. We previously mention that the thing that influenced us are our surroundings, and this island is part of it. You can find inspiring peoples, stories, ideas. The vibes are difficult to explain unless experienced, you should visit Bali so it will inspire you in the same way we felt inspired.
Nana: Do you have any advice for our readers who are seeking to find a way to build an innovative brand like “HANAKA”?
HANAKA: First, it is important to stand out, rather than to fit in. You have to differentiate yourself from
others. Second, offer something brand new, something that no other offer. The third and most important one, always put yourself in the shoes of your customers. How do you want them to feel about your products? What do you want them to say about your brand? Those questions sound simple, but it’s a powerful way to stay on track when building a brand.
It is important to stand out, rather than to fit inHANAKA