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Best of the Best: Coming Out Party

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Best of the Best Logo[dropcap cap=J]onathan Mervis’ push for 2010 has been to look into new markets, including gay weddings. “This is an exciting time to be in DC,” says Mervis, a third-generation family jeweler. “It’s not often we have the opportunity to tap into an emerging market, but that’s exactly what gay marriage will create for this city.” — EILEEN MCCLELLAND[/dropcap]

[componentheading]THE IDEA [/componentheading]

[contentheading]New Niche[/contentheading]

Mervis Diamond Importers planned a “Coming Out” party with Don Gillin, owner of DCsGayWeddingPlanners.com to promote the business as gay-friendly in anticipation of same-sex marriages becoming legal in Washington, DC. “We’re testing the waters,” Jonathan Mervis says. “We had tried advertising in a gay magazine a couple of years ago, but we did it very briefly and if you know anything about advertising, you know you have to stick with it. Now we thought, Let’s make a real push to get this market.”

Best of the Best: Coming Out Party

[componentheading]THE EXECUTION [/componentheading]

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[contentheading] Partner Up [/contentheading]

The Coming Out Party was free for Mervis because he partnered with a variety of businesses with the same goal. Mervis worked with a local jewelry designer, who created a line of rings for gay weddings. “They are gay wedding rings mostly because we say they are, but they are a little different,” Mervis says. They are a little heavier than usual and made of 18K gold or platinum. Mervis began advertising regularly in two newspapers that serve the gay community. The event was also advertised on Facebook and e-mail notices were sent to bloggers who focus on what’s going on in the city and in the gay community.

Best of the Best: Coming Out Party

[componentheading]THE REWARD [/componentheading]

[contentheading]Press Interest[/contentheading]

About 40 people attended, many of whom were journalists from local newspapers and TV stations. “It wasn’t huge. We could have accommodated more people, but we did get a lot of press out of it,” Mervis says. He also met new clients that night, who were getting married and needed rings. Not all was positive, however: “We got one angry e-mail saying, ‘We will never support your business, ever,’” he says. Nevertheless, he plans to try it again every few months to keep up momentum.

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[componentheading]DO IT YOURSELF[/componentheading][li]“Weigh the net gain. There’s always positives and negatives with any sort of marketing initiative.”[/li]
[li] Mervis says he is trying to reach other niche markets. Consider what potential markets are untapped in your community.[/li]
[li]Mervis is also making a push for the local Indian wedding market. Indian weddings typically create a demand for jewelry for the whole family as well as gold for the bride. “The effort is there and the motivation is there,” Mervis says. “We can’t rest on our laurels and do things the way we did in the past.” [/li]

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

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Wilkerson Testimonials

Gone Fishin’ (Thanks to Wilkerson)

Whether you want to go fishing — or enjoy some of the other good things life has to offer — you can take a cue from Jim Adair and choose Wilkerson to run your retirement sale. After 38 years in business, Adair decided it was time to enjoy some free time. His Missoula, Montana store, Adair Jewelers, will stay in business but without him at the helm. It was the perfect opportunity to call in the experts in retirement sales. Adair says he spoke to a lot of people who have done retirement sales to help him make his decision and he chose Wilkerson. “Wilkerson seemed to have the best set up, the best organization, the most current marketing of any of them,” he says. “If you want to run a successful sale, you have too much money on the line to be screwing around with trying to do it yourself.”

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Best of The Best

Best of the Best: Coming Out Party

Published

on

Best of the Best Logo[dropcap cap=J]onathan Mervis’ push for 2010 has been to look into new markets, including gay weddings. “This is an exciting time to be in DC,” says Mervis, a third-generation family jeweler. “It’s not often we have the opportunity to tap into an emerging market, but that’s exactly what gay marriage will create for this city.” — EILEEN MCCLELLAND[/dropcap]

[componentheading]THE IDEA [/componentheading]

[contentheading]New Niche[/contentheading]

Mervis Diamond Importers planned a “Coming Out” party with Don Gillin, owner of DCsGayWeddingPlanners.com to promote the business as gay-friendly in anticipation of same-sex marriages becoming legal in Washington, DC. “We’re testing the waters,” Jonathan Mervis says. “We had tried advertising in a gay magazine a couple of years ago, but we did it very briefly and if you know anything about advertising, you know you have to stick with it. Now we thought, Let’s make a real push to get this market.”

Best of the Best: Coming Out Party

Advertisement

[componentheading]THE EXECUTION [/componentheading]

[contentheading] Partner Up [/contentheading]

The Coming Out Party was free for Mervis because he partnered with a variety of businesses with the same goal. Mervis worked with a local jewelry designer, who created a line of rings for gay weddings. “They are gay wedding rings mostly because we say they are, but they are a little different,” Mervis says. They are a little heavier than usual and made of 18K gold or platinum. Mervis began advertising regularly in two newspapers that serve the gay community. The event was also advertised on Facebook and e-mail notices were sent to bloggers who focus on what’s going on in the city and in the gay community.

Best of the Best: Coming Out Party

[componentheading]THE REWARD [/componentheading]

[contentheading]Press Interest[/contentheading]

Advertisement

About 40 people attended, many of whom were journalists from local newspapers and TV stations. “It wasn’t huge. We could have accommodated more people, but we did get a lot of press out of it,” Mervis says. He also met new clients that night, who were getting married and needed rings. Not all was positive, however: “We got one angry e-mail saying, ‘We will never support your business, ever,’” he says. Nevertheless, he plans to try it again every few months to keep up momentum.

[componentheading]DO IT YOURSELF[/componentheading][li]“Weigh the net gain. There’s always positives and negatives with any sort of marketing initiative.”[/li]
[li] Mervis says he is trying to reach other niche markets. Consider what potential markets are untapped in your community.[/li]
[li]Mervis is also making a push for the local Indian wedding market. Indian weddings typically create a demand for jewelry for the whole family as well as gold for the bride. “The effort is there and the motivation is there,” Mervis says. “We can’t rest on our laurels and do things the way we did in the past.” [/li]

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

Advertisement

SPONSORED VIDEO

Wilkerson Testimonials

Gone Fishin’ (Thanks to Wilkerson)

Whether you want to go fishing — or enjoy some of the other good things life has to offer — you can take a cue from Jim Adair and choose Wilkerson to run your retirement sale. After 38 years in business, Adair decided it was time to enjoy some free time. His Missoula, Montana store, Adair Jewelers, will stay in business but without him at the helm. It was the perfect opportunity to call in the experts in retirement sales. Adair says he spoke to a lot of people who have done retirement sales to help him make his decision and he chose Wilkerson. “Wilkerson seemed to have the best set up, the best organization, the most current marketing of any of them,” he says. “If you want to run a successful sale, you have too much money on the line to be screwing around with trying to do it yourself.”

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