Connect with us

If I Owned

If I Owned: Scott Ginsberg




Scott Ginsberg “The Nametag Guy” describes how knowledge, fun and a passion for connections can revolutionize the in-store jewelry experience.



[drop cap cap=I] HAVE A CONFESSION TO MAKE: I don’t know much about jewelry.[/dropcap]


I’m a writer. A thinker. A speaker. A consultant.

My area of expertise is approachability. As such, if I owned a jewelry store, here are the six things I would do:

1 Nametags for everybody. It’s not a sticker — it’s a statement. It’s not a badge — it’s a brand. Nametags combat many of the major weaknesses of most retail stores. They give people permission to engage. They relax customers. They reinforce self-confidence of the employees. They disarm the awkwardness of the conversation. They keep store managers accountable. They promote fun. They humanize otherwise robotic employees.

2 New vocabulary. No employees are ever allowed to ask customers any question that will result in the answer, “Fine.” That’s an acronym for “Feelings I’m Not Expressing.” Instead, employees would only ask open ended, passion-finding questions like, “What keeps you busy outside of work?” and “What was the best part about your week?” Furthermore, the question, “So, what do you do?” would be outlawed completely. Because your job isn’t to learn what people do — it’s to learn who they are. Only then can you suggest the right jewelry to fit their individual truth.

3 Send a continuous flow of education to customers. That way, your buyers always know how to more creatively and effectively use what you sell them to make their lives better. The secret is to brainstorm topics and headlines for articles, videos, and other forms of content. Ideas might include, “Biggest Marriage Mistakes,” “Best Ideas for Romantic Proposals” and “How to Make Your Marriage Last a Lifetime.”

4 Master the surrounding universality of your product. If you’re a diamond retailer, study the art of the proposal. Learn what makes amazing marriages work. And discover the secrets to sustained physical passion. Customers will buy, and customers will talk. The secret is to find the universal human experiences and emotions that surround your product, master them, and then use that material to relate to buyers.


[inset side=left]“The secret is to find the universal human experiences and emotions that surround your product.” 
— Scott Ginsberg[/inset]5 Be a connector. Try this: Every Monday, set an Introduction Quota. Challenge yourself to introduce two people who need to know each other. Ask yourself: “What two people do I know — who don’t already know each other — who would be benefit from a connection?” Introduce them via e-mail with short bios, plus how you know each of them. Then, either leave it up to them to connect, or, set up a Zero Agenda Conversation with all three of you. Do that 50 times a year and you won’t be a commodity — you’ll be a connector. And you’ll be building customer loyalty to yourself, your salespeople, and your store.

6 Build in fun. The more boring your product is, the more fun, engaging and memorable your pitch better be. What works is when you get customers using your products in an engaging, unexpected and memorable way. What if you offered marriage proposal practice lessons? What if you had a marriage counselor on staff to talk to spouses who are waiting in the wings? What if you had an entire library of books on relationships for people to read, study, check out and use to better the partnerships they’re using jewelry to celebrate? What if you got video footage of the weddings of customers, then made a “greatest hits” montage and played it on a flat screen on a loop all day in your store? It’s not about de-commoditizing your product; it’s about re-optimizing your value proposition. 

Remember: People buy people first.

Your job is to lead with your person and follow with your profession. That means: Values before vocation, individuality before industry, and personality before position.

That’s what would happen at the approachable jewelry store.

[smalltext]SCOTT GINSBERG, AKA “The Nametag Guy,” is the author of a dozen books, a professional speaker, award-winning blogger, and the creator and host of To rent his brain, e-mail [email protected][/smalltext]


[span class=note]This story is from the September-October 2010 edition of INDESIGN[/span]



Wilkerson Testimonials

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.”

Promoted Headlines

Most Popular