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Brand Portfolio: Pugh’s Diamond Jewelers



Brand Portfolio: Pugh’s Diamond Jewelers


Published in the April 2012 issue.

Pugh’s Diamond Jewelers
Zanesville, OH

When Patrick Pugh bought out his brother Dan three years ago and became sole owner of Pugh’s Diamond Jewelers in Zanesville, OH, he immediately turned his attention to branding.

“We had done the same types of advertising for years,” Pugh says. Pugh hired Angie Jordan, a local branding expert with corporate experience, to provide direction.

“She revolutionized what we were doing,” Pugh says. “We went from 70 percent radio to hitting all the media; we went from in-house designed ads to professional ads; from no campaigns to a campaign very similar to Smyth in Baltimore.” And he began offering coupons on Facebook.


Jordan brought in focus groups of regular and potential customers. Regular customers turned out to be very loyal and would shop nowhere else for jewelry. “For potential customers, — and I was kind of shocked by this — they thought that Pugh’s offered too high a quality of jewelry for them, that they couldn’t afford it,” she says. “People thought that Pugh’s was out of their league. So we needed to get the brand identity under control and make it more inviting, more human, warmer.”

When new customers came into the store as a result of that ramped-up ad campaign, they were met by a refreshed showroom that oozed warmth.

“We brought in Pandora, ramped up Hearts On Fire, remodeled our showroom floor by adding a lounge, a coffee area, a flat-screen TV, new carpet, new paint,” Pugh says. We made it friendly and welcoming with more modern touches.”

The trademark color combination of brown and teal showed up in redesigned gift bags and boxes.

Also redesigned was the logo. The store had long been associated with its location, known as Times Square. “No one knew what Times Square was,” in relationship to the jewelry store or Zanesville, Pugh says. The new logo simply reads, “Established 1949,” emphasizing its reputation for trust.

Although in the past, Pugh, and his brother, Dan, had bought into the theory that radio was the medium for jewelers, when Pugh became CEO, he diversified his ad budget. Now just 25 to 30 percent of his ad budget goes to radio. Radio money was split between two stations that appealed to different age groups — one for young bridal customers and the other for older, loyal, potentially high-income customers. Pugh even likes a medium that many advisers warn against: the local newspaper. Because the size of the local paper has shrunk, along with its ad rates, his color half- or full-page ads really grab readers’ attention. He’s getting lots of bang for his buck.


As a result of the branding initiative, the business has grown 10 percent each of the last three years, from a $1.7 to a $2.3 million store. November- December of 2011 represented the best holiday season in the store’s history.


Pugh’s Diamond Jewelers’ new brand identity, which includes the tagline “Where Southeastern Ohio Gets Engaged,” was designed to appeal to young shoppers, who may have been intimidated by Pugh’s upscale image in the past. Warm browns and teal are a signature of the new ad campaign.



Direct mail is an important component of owner Patrick Pugh’s marketing plan. He tracks every dime spent on events like this one.


Offering financing, coupons and a rebate counters the assumption of potential customers that they can’t afford to shop at Pugh’s Diamond Jewelers.


This ad doubles as a coupon and is designed to encourage customer loyalty.


Social media is important to Pugh’s goal of reaching a new generation of customers.


The wish list form features the redesigned logo, which has been simplified from the previous one. The form carries through the new signature brown color.


Pugh’s branding is incorporated into its ribbons.





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Wilkerson Helped This Jeweler to Navigate His Retirement Sale Despite a Pandemic

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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