⇒ You might also be interested in:
- De Rothschild’s tip of the month: How to steal back customers from your competitors, in 2019?
- How to increase your deal closing percentage, without a big advertising budget?
- How to manufacture more paying customers, when you’re armed only with the clothes on your back?
- Limited time only: Your shortcut for a raise of up to 13% in your income
Is this for real?
This is how I chose to open my interview with Asaf Levitzky, the founder of StyleMaster.
“What? You mean the fact that with the right outfit you can get more customers and more money? No doubt.”
“Look, the moment you go into a meeting, even this interview, your appearance says tons about you, before you even open your mouth. It can work to your advantage, if you know how to harness it. On the other hand, if you don’t know what you’re doing, it can be your undoing.”
Ok, well, before we go on, would you please tell our readers a little bit about you.
“Love to. My name is Asaf Levitzky, I’m 38 years old, married to Ortal, a proud father of 5-year-old twin boys. I have a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Tel-Aviv University, and a master’s degree in systems engineering from the Technion Institution.”
What does a hi-tech engineer have to do with fashion?
“Fashion and style. The truth is, I come from an Italian family – the Levis and d’Urbinos of Rome and Florence. It may sound like a cliché, but for as early as I can remember, my family taught me how important it was to look and dress well. It was always there, all around me. That’s what you get when you’re constantly surrounded by people who put a lot of thought into their appearance, and know what to dress, for every occasion – it’s in my DNA.”
“Everyone who’s ever been to Italy knows what I’m talking about. You stroll the streets of Rome, then, suddenly, see a businessman wearing a power-suit, riding a Vespa. You don’t see this anyplace else.”
“A suit that commands authority.”
Let’s back up a bit. You said that not knowing how to dress for an event can be ‘your undoing`. Don’t you think you’re exaggerating there?
“I know it may sound absurd, particularly for Israeli men, but let’s look at the facts. There’s a ton of research that proves a direct relation exists between beauty and income. Take this next American research, from Medium.com. It shows two very interesting things: the connection between a man’s objective beauty and how many likes he gets on Tinder, on the one hand; and the connection between how many likes he gets on Tinder and his income, on the other. It is plainly visible, that there’s a very strong correlation between a man’s absolute beauty and the level of his income.”
“But this is not surprising. After all, there’s a well-known concept – ‘The Beauty Premium’ – that determines that better-looking people are more successful.”
Are you just talking about employees? Or self-employed men as well?
“Both. A lot of papers written in this field suggest that better-looking men have better chances of passing job interviews and being employed over-all. They also stand a better chance of getting more positive reviews from their superiors. Naturally, this reflects nicely on the paycheck. For self-employed, business owners, and salesmen it is even more apparent, as studies show a direct correlation exists between outward appearance and sales rates.”
Even in this day and age? How do you explain it?
“There are a lot of explanations: (1) ‘The Halo Effect’ – when we judge a person’s character based on their beauty, despite the facts. (2) ‘Enclothed cognition’ – in her book ‘Mind What You Wear: The Psychology of Fashion’, Prof. Karen J. Pine of the University of Hertfordshire, U.K., writes that ‘When we put on a piece of clothing we cannot help but adopt some of the characteristics associated with it, even if we are unaware of it.’ (3) Other studies have shown that formal business attire ‘increases abstract thinking – an important aspect of creativity and long-term strategizing’ (remember the power-suit?). (4) A clean and proper look creates an impression of professionalism, increases trustworthiness and instills confidence in a salesperson. (5) One research has even detected testosterone level drop with poorly dressed subjects.”
“But the one I like best is this study by Prof. Daniel Hamermesh from Austin’s Texas University published in 2010. Prof. Hamermesh is the father of the study of the economics of physical attractiveness (Pulchronomics). In his book, ‘Beauty Pays’, he proves that better-looking men can earn up to 13% more than their average-looking friends. According to other studies, better-looking people are more likely to be hired in a recession.”
So, what you’re telling me is that if I have ‘an average look’ – I’m done for?
“That’s a bit strong. No need to get carried away. The point here is that beauty is scarce, and where there’s scarcity – the market reacts accordingly. But as it turns out – lucky for us – there’s something we can do about it.”
We’ll get to that in a minute. You keep talking about the US. What about the rest of the world?
“That’s mainly because a lot of the popular research has been done in the US, but that’s not to say the results are limited only to men in North America. Europe, Japan, China, Hong-Kong…the bottom line holds true for men of all cultures. Even Israel.”
“Yeah. What I mean is that even in our country, where there’s almost no emphasis on dress codes, men’s fashion, etc., dressing better will yield results. What’s more, since there’s such a big margin compared to the rest of the world in all things fashion, it means that there’s a huge room for personal growth. Consider the reputation of the Israeli businessman – as an entrepreneur, creative, and out-of-the-box thinker – it seems we are sitting on a time bomb. Whoever catches on and acts on it quickly will win, and gain more customers. Whoever ignores it – will wake up one day to find himself out of the game.”
Say I’m interested, what can I do?
“You can turn to me for help, and learn exactly how you need to dress for every situation; Which clothes flatter you most; Which clothes you must steer clear from; Which are the right shoes to wear, and which aren’t; How to color coordinate; How your posture affects your look…I also cover stuff like haircuts, beards, grooming. Style is much more than just clothes.”
But why you?
“Listen. I may dress well today, but it wasn’t always like that. Sure I grew up in an Italian household and all that, but growing your style takes time, like everything else in life. You can say I conquered my K2 peak 5 years ago, about the time my kids were born. I specifically say ‘K2’ and not ‘Everest’ because I keep trying to improve myself, push boundaries, and discover new things. Just as in business so it is with style – you cannot lay back and put your feet up, otherwise you will stay behind.”
“My point is, I grew from the same place my customers are at. I’ve been there. Plus, being somewhat (a lot) of a shopaholic, I had to figure out a way to buy what I wanted and do it under a limited budget. As time passed, I developed mastery in online (and offline) shopping, and created my method – ‘The Italian Golden Trident’. In 2018 I figured the time had come to go public, and started StyleMaster.”
What is this method?
“I teach how to improve your appearance and through that how to grow your confidence and self-esteem, and your first impression. These are the three pillars on which my method stands, hence the name – Trident.”
And do you have any customers already?
“I sure do. On my online course, for example, I have over 1816 student from 106 countries. On another service of mine, I recently got this review from one of my clients:”
“For non-Hebrew readers, it reads: ‘Asos arrived. Amazon still hasn’t, and there are quite a few items there. The size of the clothes from Asos are right on the money. I don’t know how you performed your magic, but the pants flatter me and the shirts fit like I was born into them.”
Before we wrap it up, could you give some tips to our readers?
“Happy to: (1) A bad haircut can ruin a whole outfit. Make sure you get a haircut and style your hair – use some hair wax or moisturizers and avoid using hair gel – it’ll only make you look thin up top. (2) In the business world, the go-to shoe is the dress shoe (Oxfords, Derbys, etc.). Blundstone, Timberland and other such boots do not belong in this group. (3) Sports socks are for playing sports. Dress shoes go with dress socks, preferably black. (4) The belt must match the shoe color. (5) If you’re growing a beard, even if only stubbles, keep your neck clean – shave it up to about 2 cm below the jawline. (6) Polo shirts look bad on at least 90% of the men. Do yourselves a favor, go for a dress shirt, with long sleeves.”
In conclusion, Mr. Levitzky, how can our readers learn more?
“I will give you a link for your readers to follow. On the other side of this link, there’s a bonus waiting. For a limited time – the first 17 people to sign up, will get a free consultation call. Tell them that whoever reads this, and feels it speaks to them, they better hurry.”
Thank you, Asaf.