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Best of the Best: Raffery Fine Jewelry’s Puzzling Promotion



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[dropcap cap=A] jigsaw puzzle set the pattern for Christensen & Rafferty Fine Jewelry’s holiday marketing campaign in 2008 and 2009. The San Mateo, CA, store’s concept incorporated the best of both marketing tools: traditional means (like direct mail and phone calls) plus newer viral ones (like YouTube and Facebook). —  LORRAINE DEPASQUE[/dropcap]

[componentheading]THE IDEA [/componentheading]

[contentheading]Piece Prizes[/contentheading]

Instead of the usual holiday catalog, in 2008, Colleen Rafferty and Diane Christensen introduced the Holiday Puzzle Shopping Spree. Here’s how it worked: They mailed a puzzle piece to their customers and invited them to visit the store to see if the piece they received matched one of three missing from a puzzle set up on an easel. If so, they’d win a piece of jewelry. In 2008, there was only one winning puzzle piece, worth $5,000 toward jewelry. But, in 2009, they offered three winning pieces for three pieces of jewelry, retailing for $3,000, $2,000, and $1,000, making the total giveaway worth $6,000.


[componentheading]THE EXECUTION [/componentheading]

[contentheading] In the Mail[/contentheading]

From photos of actual merchandise, they have two identical 2,800-piece 2-by-2-foot jigsaw puzzles made: One is glued together and set up in the store to promote the contest. The second is broken up, and one piece is put in each mailed invitation. The invitation, mailed during Thanksgiving week, reads: “Does shopping for the holidays have you puzzled? Christensen & Rafferty can offer you the solution.” If, by a few days before Christmas, no one shows up with a winning piece, Christensen & Rafferty holds a drawing, using names of customers who brought in puzzle pieces that didn’t fit.

[componentheading]THE REWARD [/componentheading]

[contentheading]20% Response[/contentheading]

Both years, nearly 20 percent of the customer list visited the shop with their puzzle piece. “We actually had some people going home and rummaging through their recycling bins to look for the puzzle piece — because, when they came into the store, we told them about it and, not realizing what it was, they had thrown it out!”


Customers often asked if they could try on the jewelry featured in the puzzle — and the necklace was worth almost $400,000. “Something like this is also a great natural lead-in to call our customers for the holidays,” notes Rafferty. “Our sales associates really stepped up.”

[componentheading]DO IT YOURSELF[/componentheading]

• Start thinking about your holiday promotion early, well before fourth quarter.

• Come up with an idea that will get people talking — especially one that gets sales associates building excitement with customers.

• Afterward, share news of the success of your promotion with your customers. Tell them about it through tools like your website, e-mails, Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter.

• Take photos and videos. Photos can be sent to regional publications, while videos can go on your website and social networking sites.


• Be consistent in informing your customers of deadlines, keeping everything updated: website, Facebook, Twitter, etc.

[span class=note]This story is from the June 2010 edition of INSTORE[/span]



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