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Holiday success tips checklist

Our first full year of business had flown by.  We’d had ups and downs, trials and tribulations, but we’d finally made it thru.  A local competitor had tried their best to put us out of business, but I’d simply made up my mind that no matter what happened, our store was staying put!  Then it came....

How to put voice broadcasting to use in your jewelry store

One day I got home from work to discover I had a personal message on my answering machine from a politician seeking my vote. A few days later while checking my answering machine I noticed that my doctor had made a call reminding me of an appointment.  I knew that in both instances, there was some technology used to make these calls and it got me thinking.

Let’s have a party - Instead of a sale!

Let’s turn the party music up, break out the food and drink and have some fun, shall we?  That is what many of your customers are waiting for you to do!  It seems like so many retailers simply have one boring sale event after another to the point that big store sales are no longer effective.

Adapt or die... the choice is yours

Adapt or die - that’s kind of an abrupt title for an article isn’t it?  Before I get into the meat of this, let me digress for a moment.

Like many of you, I have a deep love for this industry and the independent jeweler.  Perhaps many of you just like me have watched this industry for almost 30 years or longer.  Its been an incredible ride in my own career, that’s for sure. 

When I entered the jewelry biz as a goldsmith’s apprentice in downtown Statesville, NC, the landscape was quite different than it is today.  Some called this time the “good ole days” or the Reagan “Glory Years.”  Things were easier then, that’s for sure!

Are you fishing for whales or minnows?

A high profile bank robber was questioned after being captured about his life of crime.  The biggest question that the investigator wanted to know was, “Why did you always prefer to rob banks?”  To which the robber answered, “Simple. Because that’s where the money is!”  Most would agree that this was a very straightforward and true answer. 

So allow me to ask you a question... “If you, Mr. or Mrs. Jeweler, are so concerned about having an overall lower average ticket sale, why don’t you do like the bank robber and go where the money is?”  Hey, I’ve got to admit myself that I’m a long way from walking the walk and talking the talk, but at least I’m thinking about it and trying to make changes.... and so should you!

Have you found yourself trying to concentrate on the product lines that constitute a sale of $99 to $199 because it seemed that’s what customers are buying as of late?  I know I have and its a mind-set I need to break and perhaps you do to!

So how do you break out of the habit of low ticket items?  Perhaps one way would be to do as Shane Decker instructs and that’s simply to show more 1 carat or bigger diamonds to each and every customer who walks in your door.  Another way might be to “add-on” or “bump up” each sale you make by selling companion items or special offers once they reach the cash register.

Certainly one method that has worked well in my store is to market to the Top 20% of my clients, or in other words, the folks less affected by the downturn in business in our country.  We regularly send this important list of clients gift cards or notices of private sales and they get first pick of new merchandise/lines that we get in.  On average, they hear from our store about 6 to 8 times per year.

One jeweler recently shared a great idea with me.  He said that each month he picked one or two of his better clients and took them to dinner at a nice restaurant.  The only caveat was that he would ask these clients to bring along a few of their friends so he could meet them (notice I said meet them, not try to high pressure sell them).  This was pretty smart in my opinion because his better clients also had friends much like them who were affluent and well able to purchase nicer fine jewelry.  Later on he relates, his store became the talk of the town for doing this and other clients would start asking them when he was going to take them out... I love it!

Probably each of us would like to see higher ticket sales in our stores and I’m sure many of you have ideas that are working for you.  I’d be interested to hear them and I’ll bet our readership would love to hear them as well.  If you would be willing to share your idea, how about e-mailing it to me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and perhaps I can share it in one of my future columns.


Bill Warren is president of The Gold Mine Fine Jewelry & Gifts, Inc., a successful jewelry store in the Hudson, NC.  He recently formed Warren Marketing Systems, a company dedicated to helping small to medium size jewelers achieve success through innovative marketing.  He regularly speaks at jewelry shows and conventions and also is a member of the Marketing Wizards Alliance.  If you would like to receive more money making ideas like those in this article, consider subscribing to the Marketing Wizards Alliance Newsletter. To do so or to contact Bill, call 828-729-1020 or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

How to recognize a new client & get them back in again

Question: How many times have you visited a business for your first time, made a purchase and in a week or so, received a welcome letter or packet from that business? 

Answer: Probably not too often!

Perhaps one of the things we do in our store that I value as a customer relationship builder most is sending that new client something to recognize their first visit and purchase at my establishment.  I’m not referring to the “Thank You Note” which my customer also gets, but something sent separately.

Many jewelers have the means through their POS systems to send thank you cards, birthday & anniversary announcements, special sale event notifications, etc., but how often are they recognizing and mailing to these new clients to get them into their “Marketing Funnel?”  Certainly most of us have a marketing funnel - or at least I hope so.  What I mean by this is that you should be sending your customers special offers, notices of events & other things at least six or more times per year.  Friends, if you’re not doing at least this much, I’m afraid you’re being left behind in the race!

Angie, my lovely wife, loves to shop at a clothing store called “Chico’s,” and from the get go I noticed something different about this company.  When she made her first purchase, she got a welcome letter along with a special offer from the management at Chico’s.  Did she use it?  You bet she did - and many other offers that they’ve sent her since that time. Geez honey, could you slow down on my pocketbook just a bit?   Chico’s even leaves her messages on our answering machines saying something like, “Hi Angie, we just wanted to thank you for being a new client.  Because you’ve made your first purchase at Chico’s, you now qualify for a special offer of xxxxx.”

If a large clothing company like Chico’s can take the time to do something like this for their new clients, don’t you think you and I can do it in our jewelry stores?   This testifies to the power of marketing to your new clients.

You’ll be amazed at the results you’ll get when you start developing marketing & offers to this new group of clients. I know I was!!  Some jewelers have asked how I go about doing this, so here is my formula:

  • Every Monday morning using my Edge POS system, I pull a report showing names and addresses and phone numbers of every new client who purchased from us the week before.
  • Each of these new clients will be sent a special offer that I devise whether that be a gift certificate, simple letter telling them about our services and lines offered or a combination of each.
  • Personally, I put an expiration date on each a month out so that the customer has time to use it and not feel overly rushed back in.

Please take the time to track the return of these customers to your store as well so you’ll know how effective your marketing has been.  Let me also say this, you can be as simple or as fancy as you’d like with this.  I’ve seen jewelers use simple gift certificates they’ve printed from their own computer using Microsoft Word or Publisher and I’ve seen fancy colored brochures and guess what… I’ve seen both be very effective at getting the customer in for a repeat sale!

If you’d like to see what I’m currently using to drive new customers back in my store, I’d be willing to share it with you.  Simply drop me an e-mail requesting my new customer brochure at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  and I’ll e-mail a PDF file for you to see and get some ideas for starting your very own “New Customer Welcome Pack”.  Trust me… this works and you’ll reap huge dividends from it! 

Now, my prescription for you is, don’t let this idea sit around for long. Do it today because your store’s profit line will thank you tomorrow!

Bill Warren is president of The Gold Mine Fine Jewelry & Gifts, Inc., a successful jewelry store in the Hudson, NC.  He recently formed Warren Marketing Systems, a company dedicated to helping small to medium size jewelers achieve success through innovative marketing.  He regularly speaks at jewelry shows and conventions and also is a member of the Marketing Wizards Alliance.  If you would like to receive more money making ideas like those in this article, consider subscribing to the Marketing Wizards Alliance Newsletter. To do so or to contact Bill, call 828-729-1020 or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 
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