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Do You Or Don't You?

Do You Or Don’t You: Ever Participated In a Bridal Show?

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YES, I HAVE

We attend a local bridal fair to show goods and invite brides to a special show, with discounts, at our store two weeks later. It is tiring and a lot of work but often has paid dividends. Most of our bridal clients become clients for life. — Steven B. Goldfarb, Alvin Goldfarb Jeweler, Bellevue, WA

I actually host a bridal show. We usually take a selection of rings for the brides’ friends to look at and try on. We also take men’s rings and gift ideas for the bridal party — toasting glasses for us to engrave. It usually goes well. — Eric Olsen, Chisholm’s Jewelry, Lander, WY

We displayed gents’ wedding bands. Went over real well. — Lyle Fields, Marquirette’s Exquisite Jewelry, Montgomery, AL

No bride comes to the show alone. She has her bridesmaids and mother, etc. Everyone is fair game. Even if she has her diamond, there is still opportunity for a band or trade-ups. We like doing the shows; we love brides coming up to us and showing off her ring from us. — Mike Doland, Doland Jewelers, Dubuque, IA

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5 We built a portable cleaning station so we could polish engagement rings. Our approach was twofold: First, while the rings were being made pretty again, the staff would have about five minutes to show them other rings and bands; second, we got to see what size and shape of diamond is popular and what metal they choose. It was very valuable information for us. We were not trying to make sales; we wanted them to come back to our store, so we incentivized them with $50 off their purchase of a wedding ring. We had about a $2,000 investment and to date have gotten over $10,000 in sales. Not too bad for an afternoon of fun. — Doug Meadows, David Douglas Diamonds & Jewelry, Marietta, GA

NO, I HAVEN’T

That’s chasing the horse after it is out of the barn. — Chuck Kuba, Iowa Diamond, Des Moines, IA

Bridal shows are for all the “fluff.” If they are there, they have a ring and are looking for wedding stuff — caterer, florist, photographer, etc. etc. etc. — Joan Charlene Little, Genesis Jewelry, Muscle Shoals, AL

Did it for a decade. The biggest attraction was our steamer when we cleaned attendees’ rings. We got almost no sales from one of the largest bridal shows in the country. — Rex Solomon, Houston Jewelry, Houston, TX

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Have done a couple in past years and every one was a bust. The girls come to you and ask you to appraise their half-carat diamond they purchased on QVC. — Robert M. Katz, Goldbar Jewelers, Virginia Beach, VA

Talked a lot, sold not a thing. — Kimberley Beasley, Kimberley’s Exquisite Jewelry, Des Moines, WA

This article originally appeared in the September 2015 edition of INSTORE.

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A Liquidation Sale during a Pandemic? Wilkerson Showed Them the Way

For 25 years, Stafford Jewelers of Cincinnati, Ohio, was THE place to go for special gifts, engagement diamonds, high-end Swiss watch brands — in other words, the crème de la crème of fine jewelry. But this summer, the Stafford family was ready to retire. So, they chose Wilkerson to help them close up shop. “One of the biggest concerns was having the sale in the middle of COVID,” says Director of Stores Michelle Randle. Wilkerson gave the Stafford team plenty of ideas as well as safety guidelines, which they closely followed. “All of the employees felt safe, the customers coming in the door felt safe and we did a lot of business,” says Randle. How much business? “The inventory flew,” she says. Translation: They sold millions and millions of dollars-worth of merchandise. Randle calls it, “an incredible experience.” Would she recommend Wilkerson to other retailers who are thinking of thinning their inventories or retiring? “Everyone got more than what they expected out of the sale. You have to hire Wilkerson. They’re amazing.”

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