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Best of The Best

Best of the Best: Host an Online Trunk Show



Best of the Best Logo[dropcap cap=BASED IN EUGENE, OR,] NewTwist is a retail store that added an e-commerce site,, two years ago, and although in-store sales still make up the bulk of business, online sales have become a lucrative sideline. The store carries collections from artists such as Alexis Bittar, Jamie Joseph, Jeanine Payer, Me & Ro, and others. — EILEEN McCLELLAND[/dropcap]

[componentheading]THE IDEA [/componentheading]
[contentheading]A Twist on a Trunk Show[/contentheading]

NewTwist hosted a Jamie Joseph Trunk Show last fall. Big deal, you say? But this trunk show went virtual a day before the physical event, building excitement and prompting additional sales. Choosing the artist for the store’s first virtual trunk show seemed natural. Husband and wife team Jamie and Jeremy Joseph create one-of-a-kind jewelry designed with the stone’s intrinsic beauty in mind, focusing on shape, faceting and organic framework. “There is a sort of cosmic connection that happens at the Jamie Joseph display case, something comes over you and once you find the perfect stone, you just have to go for it,” says Maura Lambert of NewTwist. “Not only are they a fabulous statement piece, but they also become precious talismans to the wearer. “In addition, the jewelry is environmentally conscious and conflict-free. Jamie Joseph promotes ethical sourcing and recycled metals. Best of all, Jamie Joseph rings fly out of the store.”

[componentheading]THE EXECUTION [/componentheading]
[contentheading]Virtual Preparation [/contentheading]

Four hundred and fifty one-of-a-kind rings had to be photographed in two days, the photographs uploaded to the website and accompanying descriptions written. “We strive to make the experience as similar to the event in the store as possible,” Lambert says. “Using our magnification tool on the website, online customers are able to virtually explore each and every piece as if they were seeing it in the flesh.” Virtual consumers get the full benefit of the experience, Lambert says, complete with experts standing by to help every shopper with questions about any piece via phone, e-mail or video chat. The jewelry was available one day prior to the physical event for VIP customers who had purchased Jamie Joseph pieces online before, and for a week after the show for everyone. NewTwist advertised the show with postcards and e-mails. “We mentally prepared them that Jamie was going to bring 20 times more items than they’d ever seen,” says Andrea Cowan, the store’s manager. On the day, music was played and champagne and cupcakes served. “It’s a social gathering,” Cowan says. “Women come with their friends, hang out and try on jewelry. Our store is in a small town and everyone kind of knows everybody. It’s about being with friends.”


[componentheading]THE RESULT [/componentheading]
[contentheading]Awesome Sales[/contentheading]

NewTwist had dozens of buyers online and 200 to 300 customers visiting the store in one day. Sales were “awesome,” Cowan says. “It’s a lot of work but it definitely pays off.”

[componentheading]DO IT YOURSELF[/componentheading]

Build buzz:  “Do everything you can to promote it and build excitement around it,” Cowan says. “We had the photos online a day before we had it in the store. So customers could shop online, figure out what they wanted and hope it was still there when they went in the next day.”

 Focus on the artist: Promote it as a chance for fans to meet the artist.


 GET AHEAD: Get the word out early.


[span class=note]This story is from the May 2011 edition of INSTORE[/span]



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Hosting a going-out-of-business sale when the coronavirus pandemic hit wasn’t a part of Bob Smith’s game plan for his retirement. Smith, the owner of E.M. Smith Jewelers in Chillicothe, Ohio, says the governor closed the state mid-way through. But Smith chose Wilkerson, and Wilkerson handled it like a champ, says Smith. And when it was time for the state to reopen, the sale continued like nothing had ever happened. “I’d recommend Wilkerson,” he says. “They do business the way we do business.”

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