Jamshed Gull and Haider Ali are the brother duo behind All Pro Wear, the sportswear manufacturing powerhouse based in Sialkot. Located in Punjab, Pakistan, Sialkot has been a major sports goods production hub for more than a century. Since as early as 1883, the sports goods industry of Sialkot has been exporting products all corners of the world.
Aiming to go global from day 1
Made in Sialkot products have gained global recognition for the quality that goes into the production process, from selection of materials to final delivery. Inspired by the entrepreneurship that filled the city, the brothers decided to start their own sportswear manufacturing business. Haider ran marketing and sales for the company while Jamshed spearheaded production and operations. As first generation entrepreneurs, they weren’t afraid to dream big and shoot for the stars. Their objective was to go global from day 1.
Embracing digital marketing is key
The journey wasn’t easy in the beginning. In the company’s early days in 2005, All Pro Wear attempted to do direct exports. The company had a website that Jamshed tried to promote on Facebook that targeted American and European buyers. Sponsored advertisement on various social media channels yielded some results, but most were end-user consumers that only placed small orders. Jamshed wanted to reel in the big fish, so he researched for more effective methods. That’s when he found Alibaba.com during a Google search and found it to be more cost-effective. “We wanted to reach out to the millions of global B2B buyers in Western countries. And we wanted to use Alibaba.com to build long-term relationships with buyers.” Prior to joining Alibaba.com, All Pro Wear exhibited at an e-sports trade show in Germany. Event participation cost the company $6000 US and, on average, only 1-2 customers could place orders. In comparison, after joining Alibaba.com, the company invested $500 US once in a KWA campaign which saw 4-5 customers place orders. That’s when the brothers realized they needed to embrace digital marketing.
Navigating the platform with clear objectives
Launching on Alibaba.com was the easy part; operating the platform and getting engagement from customers was slightly more difficult. “It took some time for us to become comfortable with the features and functionalities the platform had to offer. There are currently three members of the staff who are dedicated to using Alibaba.com. We have taken both online and offline training sessions and regularly speak with our account manager even though they are not based in our city. They are always cooperative and happy to help out.” Jamshed mentions promoting products with KWA was the first strategy that gave them noticeable results. All Pro Wear had a clear target of European and American markets, and with effective use of keywords, the brothers received their first order within two months of being on the platform. Now, more than 70% of their business comes from Alibaba.com. The reminder of their business stem from other portals but Alibaba.com is preferred because the return on investment is much higher. “Once we form connections with our customers, we will continue to nurture these relationships so they will place repeated orders. I visited some of them in France and Germany in 2018 and they have visited us as well.”
“In 2019, we learned about Super September from our account manager. Naturally, we wanted to take part in the biggest annual promotional event on Alibaba.com. We received some inquiries that later converted into orders. In particular, a French brand initially placed a sample order for jerseys. Upon receiving the samples, they were extremely satisfied with the quality and placed a full order worth more than $10,000. This was a huge order for us and we are very happy with how that turned out.”
Continuing to grow with Alibaba.com
Jamshed and Haider’s vision is to continue expansion of All Pro Wear—they have their eyes set on the Australian market as their next goal with the help of Alibaba.com “I would have never otherwise reached buyers in so many countries from sitting at home.” All Pro Wear looks forward to continuous learning and exploration of new Alibaba.com tools that will help facilitate the growth of their business. The duo is enthusiastic about new approaches as that same mentality has boosted them greatly in the past. “You have to make up your mind and truly believe power of ecommerce.”
Their success could be yours!