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Make Your Customers Social Media Stars, Douse Flame Wars With the Rule of Three, and More Tips for July

And engage in some guerrilla marketing in your local diner.

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MARKETINGHomegrown Stars

Need social media models? Look no further than your customers. It’s worked wonders for Bullock’s Jewelry in Roswell, NM. “We get a big response from the ads because the model looks familiar to our customers and, as a bonus, we find out what the customers really like in our showcase because they pick out what to model,’” says owner Kyle Bullock. In exchange for use of their image, the models get pampering treatment in the store, their own glamour shots and local renown. “It’s been the best social campaign we’ve done and has helped humanize our brand as a store,” says Bullock.

OPERATIONSMeetings on Hold

Feeling like your meetings just aren’t that productive? Hold a moratorium for a week or month or however long and look for alternative ways to disseminate the information. Make a note for when things aren’t being communicated well and then reintroduce meetings for those instances.

MARKETINGCoast to Success

Cross marketing doesn’t have to be huge. Exclusively Diamonds in Mankato, MN, has found outsized success by placing ring-sizer coasters at a small chain of local restaurants. “The coasters really drive our bridal sales by making it easy for the customer to start the conversation about what his or her finger size may be,” says co-owner Maria Brown. (It helps that the restaurants are owned by the husband of Exclusively’s other owner, Sarah Person, but it’s a neat idea regardless!)

CUSTOMER RELATIONSUp Your Engagement

With the economy cooling, you should be looking to increase your online engagement with current customers, recommends Erich Jacobs, president of the Jewelers Board of Trade, explaining that it “becomes a cushion against a downturn because when pocketbooks tighten, they have an incentive to search for more affordable options if you’re not engaging with them.”

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MARKETINGHire a TikTok Intern

Marketers have long turned to young people to help them navigate new social platforms. TikTok is no different. But according to a story in the New York Times, it helps to cut them a lot of creative slack, and even allow these youngsters to become the face of your brand, given the direct nature of the channel, let alone its often confusing mix of voice snippets, song clips, and unique vernacular. “The best way to do it is just to hire college interns,” the report quotes one small business owner as saying. One such intern created a video for Claire’s that generated 1.5 million views and 20,000 new followers for the company’s TikTok account.

HIRINGExperience Doesn’t Equal Performance

When hiring, don’t mistake experience for past performance. Setting requirements like “three to five years of experience in a retail setting” is no guarantee of landing yourself a solid hire. The data is clear, says behavorial psychologist Adam Grant: “Past experience rarely predicts future performance. What matters is past performance — and current motivation and ability. It’s how well people can learn to do a job, not how long they’ve already
done it.”

PRODUCTIVITYThe Rule of Three

Want to improve the productivity of email and avoid flame wars? Use the “Rule of Three,” writes Jim Schleckser in INC: If you can’t resolve something in three emails or less, it’s time to pick up the phone. “It’s been my experience that this results in a 100 percent success rate in resolving the issue, usually within minutes of getting on the phone, while limiting unnecessary email,” he says.

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When the Kids Have Their Own Careers, Wilkerson Can Help You to Retire

Alex and Gladys Rysman are the third generation to run Romm Jewelers in Brockton, Mass. And after many decades of service to the industry and their community, it was time to close the store and take advantage of some downtime. With three grown children who each had their own careers outside of the industry, they decided to call Wilkerson. Then, the Rysmans did what every jeweler should do: They called other retailers and asked about their own Wilkerson experience. “They all told us what a great experience it was and that’s what made us go with Wilkerson.” says Gladys Rysman. The results? Alex Rysman says he was impressed. “We exceeded whatever I expected to do by a large margin.”

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