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Tip Sheet

Hire an Opera Singer to Sing Your Voice Mail Message … and More Tips for June

Exclusive invites; unique store names bring business; and more tips for jewelers.

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SONG AND CHANCE

Sign Messages

Want a funny, memorable voice-mail message? Hire a local opera singer to sing yours. Have him or her record a bunch of different variations to keep things fresh. It should be funny, while at the same time associating your store with the finer things in life. Don’t over-extend the joke, keep your message short — for many people, a little opera goes a long way.

PLAYLIST MARKETING

Invitations Via MP3

If you’ve got a high-end store and are planning an exclusive event, check out what the 16-year-old son of music executive L.A. Reid did for his birthday party. He sent all of his friends free MP3 players with invitations recorded on them. Could you do the same? While each invitation might cost you a hundred dollars or more, it’s a hip, high-visibility way to make sure your million-dollar event is noted by your biggest-spending customers.

THE WHOLE THING

Create Product Tales

Been to Whole Foods Market? The hot supermarket chain is brilliant at creating stories around the products they sell — e.g. the story of the farmer who grew a product or the history of a particular wine variety. Check them out and see how you could apply their story-telling approach to the different designers, gemstones, or metal-working techniques you offer.

SHADOW PLAY

Project Your Ads

Entrepreneur.com suggests logo projection as an attention-getting (and, even better, potentially inexpensive) advertising method to consider. To do it, find a windowless building at least three stories tall in an area with reasonably heavy foot traffic. Then contact the owner of the building opposite and get permission to install a logo projector in their store. When night comes, it’s time to start the show — for example, you could have a silhouette of a man on bended knee slipping a ring on a woman’s finger along with your store’s name and slogan. Warning: before dropping $1,500 on a projector, check your local zoning laws.

PET OFFENSIVE

Book A Psychic

If you’ve followed our advice and started to sell pet jewelry, here’s an idea to get your new category off to a howling good start — invite a pet psychic to your store. (Don’t believe there is such a thing? Google disagrees, showing more than 150,000 results for the term “pet psychic”.) Believe us … your customers will line up for hours to learn what Fluffy’s really thinking. (If you’ve got a store pet of your own, you can even have him “invite” the psychic to the store.)

PICTURE THIS

Shoot the Process

Add a little extra touch of specialness to a custom-design project by taking a picture of the customer with a drawing or rendering of the design before it is manufactured — showing how they were involved in the creative process. Include this photo (or photos, if you go further and take pictures at several stages of the project) when delivering the design.

THROWING OUT NAMES

Pick One

Cute name for a business: New York’s hip clothes store Itsasickness. Could you brainstorm a name that similarly expresses that overpowering urge women have to buy jewelry? Ideas: Aintneverenough, Justcant helpit, or Moremoremore.

CHOP SHOP

Do It Carnival-Style

Here’s an idea you can borrow from carnivals, fundraisers, and the A&E network series “King of Cars”, which focuses on one of America’s top car dealerships. The owner/impresario, Chop, lets buyers who have just bought a car bang a gong — or, if it will help seal a deal, allows them the option of soaking their salesperson in a carnival dunk tank, located on the premises. If you want to see a business that promotes itself with excitement and energy, check out “King of Cars.”

Over the years, INSTORE has won 80 international journalism awards for its publication and website. Contact INSTORE's editors at [email protected].

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Wilkerson Testimonials

Retirement Made Easy with Wilkerson

The store was a landmark in Topeka, Kansas, but after 80 years in business, it was time for Briman’s Leading Jewelers to close up shop. Third generation jeweler and owner Rob Briman says the decision wasn’t easy, but the sale that followed was — all thanks to Wilkerson. Briman had decided a year prior to the summer 2020 sale that he wanted to retire. With a pandemic in full force, he had plenty of questions and concerns. “We had no real way to know if we were going to be successful or have a failure on our hands,” says Briman. “We didn’t know what to expect.” But with Wilkerson in charge, the experience was “fantastic” and now there’s plenty of time for relaxing and enjoying a more secure retirement. “I would recommend Wilkerson to any retailer considering a going-out-of-business sale,” says Briman. “They’ll help you reach your financial goal. Our experience was a tremendous success.”

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