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Shane Decker

Don’t Bore the Pants Off Diamond Customers By Making This Common Mistake

Technical information can help you make sales. But be very careful not to go overboard.

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HAVE YOU EVER been around someone who thinks he’s an expert on every subject? Nobody likes a know-it-all. And yet, many jewelry salespeople are guilty of being just that. In fact, they often bore the pants off potential diamond customers by droning endlessly on about the technical aspects of a diamond, and thereby blow the sale!

Certainly, technical information is important. But how do you know how much is too much? The key is to ask the proper questions, and then listen closely to the answers. The best questions to gauge the customer’s interest in technical information are these:  

“Would you like to see your diamond under magnification?” Or: “Would you like to know more about the technical aspects of the diamond or the 4 C’s?”

If their answer is “no,” then there is no need to get into the technical aspects of the diamond… they already trust you. You will only hurt your chances at closing the sale if you press that information on them. Instead, continue to romance the diamond until you’ve closed the sale.

If their answer is “yes,” then you know they will be interested in hearing more. While the customer is looking through the microscope, ask them “Do you know about the 4 C’s?” If they do express interest in learning about the 4 C’s, always follow this template:

Start With Carat Weight

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Size is the one attribute that even the least knowledgeable customer will care about. If the customer is looking at a diamond of one carat or more, romance it by playing up its rarity. This will increase its perceived value and help you close the sale.

Move on to cut

First, clarify that the cut of a diamond is not the same as its shape, even though diamonds are often labeled “round-cut” or “pear-cut” (by the way, De Beers is now calling the pear-cut diamond a “teardrop.” I suppose if you’re De Beers, you can call it whatever you want!).

If you are selling a diamond that comes with an AGS or GIA certificate, the diamond’s proportions will be listed, and you can talk to them about that (especially when they are looking at an ideal-cut or triple-zero diamond). Don’t get into the table percentage, depth percentage, etc. unless they ask.

Finish With Color and Clarity

Always start at the bottom of the chart with both color and clarity. This allows you to build value, as you never want to devalue the product. Begin with I3 and work your way up on the clarity scale. Likewise, begin with Z color and move up from there.

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When discussing clarity, never talk about “flaws,” “blemishes” or “inclusions”… you might as well tell the customer the diamond has cancer! Instead, refer to them as “internal characteristics.”

Remember: Technical information should only make up ten percent of your total presentation when done properly. If you give the customer too much information, they will leave because you are not listening to their needs. However, if they want the information and you don’t give it, they will think you don’t have the knowledge and will lose confidence in you.

It’s a fine line to walk … and that’s why it’s so important to ask the proper questions, and really listen to their answers. When you adapt your presentation accordingly, you’ll be surprised to find that you can now sell to every personality and every level of product knowledge with equal effectiveness. And you’ll know the one thing the “know-it-alls” of the world don’t: you always make more friends (and more sales!) when you listen.

Shane Decker has provided sales training to more than 3,000 jewelry stores. Shane cut his teeth in jewelry sales in Garden City, KS, and sold over 100 1-carat diamonds four years in a row. Contact him at [email protected].

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