It's the biggest source of new customers.
In the age of online reviews, what constitutes a referral has evolved. Similarly, Siri and Google Maps have changed the way people find a “local” store. Still, as these figures show, the importance of word of mouth remains as vitally important as ever – it is still by far the biggest source of new customers for independent jewelers, accounting for three in four new clients.
That’s almost unchanged from 2007. In a recent Brain Squad survey, we asked our readers about what they do to drive word-of-mouth and only a little over half had a WoM program in place.
SEE MORE BIG SURVEY 2017 STORIES
Here, those jewelers tell of some of the ways they get people talking positively about their store:
DO YOU DO ANYTHING SPECIFIC TO DRIVE WORD OF MOUTH?
Yes: 54% / No: 46%
- Simple technique: We thank our customers for their business, then ask if they get compliments on the new piece, that they give us a mention! — Laura Mease, Measetique Jewels, Shawnee, KS
- We encourage young customers to like us on Facebook, give us a review. Older folks to take an extra business card to pass around. — Rosanne Kroen, Rosanne’s Diamonds & Gold, South Bend, IN
- Ask. Simply ask our customers to talk about us. Works very well if you’re genuine. — Beth Cevasco, Scott’s Custom Jewelers, Fairlawn, OH
- We offer gift certificates to the person that is referring and then when the new client makes a purchase they as well get $100 off of their first piece. – Alisha Moore, Toner Jewelers, Overland Park, KS
- Tell my customer I’ll give them 10 percent off a repair or purchase if someone new mentions them. — Todd Tinder, Tinder’s Jewelry, Bowling Green, VA
- We have a strong referral program. If you refer a friend who buys an engagement ring you get a free wedding band. If they buy something less, you get a free bracelet. — Dianna Rae High, Dianna Rae Jewelry, Lafayette, LA
- We market like crazy online via social media, and find Instagram has helped us grow more than Facebook. I haven’t tackled SnapChat just yet, but would like to add that in to the mix. — Jen Hollywood, J Hollywood Designs, Chester Springs, PA
- For our wholesale services to the industry, WD Wholesale, we are part of the Jewelers Helping Jewelers (Facebook group) and it has been literally viral for our business. People refer our business to other businesses every single day. — Rita Wade, Wade Designs Jewelry, Rocky Mount, NC
- We hold monthly customer appreciation events and invite everyone. It is a great way to cultivate talk and make friends in the neighborhood. — Theresa Namie, Stephen Vincent Design, Minneapolis, MN
We do a lot of print advertising, which seems to get people talking. Print works! We stopped our Facebook page, even though we had over 50,000 followers. We also stopped Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram — it all seemed like a waste of time and effort! — Idar Bergseth, Idar, Victoria, BC
- Provide absolute quality and unique items. — D. Robert Smith, Dancing Raven Stoneworks, Durango, CO
- It’s so basic but we try to talk with people and make sure that they are happy. — Mark Clodius, Clodius & Co. Jewelers, Rockford, IL
- Lots of personalized follow-up drives referrals. We don’t ask for them outright, but it’s a natural occurrence with great customer service and follow-up. — Mark Snyder, Snyder Jewelers, Weymouth, MA
- We started with Podium, a company that integrates on-line reviews with our Edge POS system; we also do clienteling and send gifts to customers to hopefully drive word of mouth. — Kriss Roethlisberger, Ace of Diamonds, Mt. Pleasant, MI
- We joined a local FaceBook page called Word of Mouth. It has been responsible for bringing folks in when they ask for a reputable jeweler for repairs, sizing etc. — Donnie Blanton, Brittany’s Fine Jewelry, Gainesville, FL
- Bring A Friend campaigns. My preferred customers get a discount, extra if they bring a friend, and the friend gets the discount as well. I do it maybe once a year or so. Usually brings in half a dozen new customers, and a few that-day-only extra sales (friends that don’t end up coming back regularly). — Janne Etz, Contemporary Concepts, Cocoa, FL
- Every place I go , I let the folks know what I do and where, give out tons of business cards and talk up the business. — Ira Kramer, The Diamond Exchange of Maryland, Rockville, MD
- For nearly 50 years we have had a diamond club. The members chat about the club benefits and that drives others to join. — Eileen Eichhorn, Eichhorn Jewelry, Decatur, IN
- Often do a quick fix and ask for nothing in return but a good review and spreading the word about us etc. It’s interactive and organic and has brought us some AMAZING clients and jobs. — Ryan “Jr” Karp, Cornerstone Jewelry, Palos Park, IL
- We always show something special to customers who visit the store. This week it’s a one-carat solitaire to everyone who visits. Most have never held one, much less owned one, although they have seen and heard about them. — J. Dennis Petimezas, Watchmaker’s Diamonds & Jewelry, Johnstown, PA
- We do in-store giveaways randomly. — Cathy McMurray, The Hunt House, Huntsville, Ontario, Canada
- Be involved in the community. Chamber events, volunteer work, special events in the store advertised on social media. — Kim Hatchell, Galloway & Moseley, Sumter, SC
- We support most every philanthropical event in the area — from grade school carnivals to post proms to Tom fighting cancer, we donate to nearly everything! — Gary Youngberg, Ames Silversmithing, Ames, IA
- I give items to every charity and civic group that asks for donations and work to be apart of the community by serving in civic organizations. This has led to being the jewelry designer of choice for Miss Tennessee USA and Miss Tennessee Teen pageants and to be asked by the mayor to serve on a committee to acquire art for the city. Great recognition. — Elliott Herzlich, Elliott’s Jewelers, Tyler, TX
JEWELER SUCCESS STORIES
“Halfway Through the Sale, We Already Did a Year’s Worth of Volume”
Torin Bales says he was “blown away” by Wilkerson’s results after the company ran his retirement sale. “When you hire a consultant, you have to let them take control,” says the Texas retailer. After all, if you’re like most jewelers, you only retire once. Get the maximum return on your life’s investment. Turn to Wilkerson & Associates and let your new life begin!
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