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Manager's To Do

Manager’s To Do for Jewelers: April 2016

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Week 1 / APR. 4-9

Inventory Show season is almost
upon us. Brainstorm with staff on
ways to clear space in your cases for
your new merchandise purchases.

Events Mother’s Day is early this
year, falling on May 8. Curate an
M’s Day selection and get it up on
your website now. Keep most of the
offerings within a price range of $50
to $250 (although depending on your
store you may want to go as high as
$1,000). Offer steep discounts on a
couple of items to keep people coming
back to look at your offerings.

Shows The SMART Jewelry starts in
Chicago in less than 10 days (education
sessions begin April 16; show
runs from April 17-19). There’s still
time to register. We guarantee you’ll
go home with more than just lovely
new goods.

Week 2 / APR. 11-16

Customer Service Begin training
your staff to give first-time customers
a “tour” of your store. This is a good
way to break the ice and make newcomers
feel welcome. Also establish a
new rule: salespeople must walk customers
who have made purchases to
the door and thank them for coming.

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Marketing Not sure what to do for
summer? How about a bead event?
Despite initial expectations, there’s
no sign this trend is fading.

Legal Inspect sidewalks and driveways to identify areas where people
might trip. Call a contractor if repairs
are needed.

Inventory While you’re at the
SMART Show (or any other show this
year), gather pictures and pricing, to
review back at the store. Get information
on potential new vendors. Even
if you don’t have the open-to-buy
dollars this season, start a file for the
next show you will be attending.

Week 3 / APR. 18-23

Management If your typical response
to handling day to day affairs
is, “Let me take care of this,” then try
this experiment: For the next two
weeks free up two hours a day just
to manage. Delegate some admin
work, drop less important meetings
and spend the extra time giving more
guidance to your team. You may find
the extra productivity far outweighs
your “lost” hours.

In-Store In honor of Earth Day on
April 22, install some shrubbery
inside. Living things will literally
add fresh air to your showroom (one
plant for every 100 square feet of
space will be enough to filter the air).

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Sales Floor The counter where you
do battery changes is likely to be one
of your store’s most heavily trafficked
areas. Put some promotional material
there (maybe a list of the bench
services you offer) or some lower
priced merchandise ($200-$500) to
encourage impulse buying.

Week 4 / APR. 25-30

Education Go through the notes
you took during all those educational
sessions at Chicago (or check
Instoremag.com) and organize them
into a usable form so that you can
quickly start implementing some of
the “Smarter” ideas.

Marketing There are a string of mini
selling dates coming up including
prom season, communions and
graduation. Draw up a schedule for
case displays and give thought to
potential cross promotions.

Sales Create an education kit with
rhinestones to provide guidance on
how to buy a diamond.

This article originally appeared in the April 2016 edition of INSTORE.

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Manager's To Do

An Action Plan for Vegas, Father’s Day Prep, A Risk Review and More Manager’s To-Do Actions for June

Inscribe these tips on your calendar to make this month more productive.

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JUN. 2-8

BUYING If you’re in Vegas for the JCK shows (May 31-June 3), make this year’s buying expedition a cooperative effort with the rest of the staff back in the store. Prime your smart phone, digital camera and laptop so that you can feed as much information back to your employees and get their feedback on what you find. Maybe even set up a Twitter feed to show them how hard you’re working.

MARKETING Ramp up your blogging this week. Comment on what’s new in Las Vegas and what has people buzzing. You don’t actually have to be at the show to do this — just offer your opinions based on the trade press reports (if you need inspiration, check instoremag.com each morning).

Podcast: Against the Odds, a High School Student Fights to Keep the Family Jewelry Store Alive
Over the Counter

Podcast: Against the Odds, a High School Student Fights to Keep the Family Jewelry Store Alive

Podcast Bonus Episode: Andrea Hill Shares Survival Strategies for Jewelers Facing Daunting Challenges
Over the Counter

Podcast Bonus Episode: Andrea Hill Shares Survival Strategies for Jewelers Facing Daunting Challenges

Podcast: Would Your Customer Drive Hundreds of Miles for a Lab-Created Diamond?
JimmyCast

Podcast: Would Your Customer Drive Hundreds of Miles for a Lab-Created Diamond?

JUN. 9-15

SALES MEETING Go through your plans for the run-up to Father’s Day. Get your staff to think beyond the traditional, especially if it’s a younger dad — fashion jewelry is growing with this set. Be ready to suggest gift cards as well; men can be a picky bunch when it comes to what they may receive from a jewelry store.

PERSONAL Shake up your routine. With pen and paper, write a thank-you note to someone who’s influenced you in your career. Don’t forget to mail it.

MANAGEMENT Creating a risk management plan involves more than getting affordable rates for insurance premiums. In the long run, avoiding potential claims is the single biggest step you can take to keep your risks (and costs) down. The Small Business Administration (sba.gov) makes available a helpful guide to minimize risk.

JUN. 16-22

FURNISHINGS Need any new office furniture? Now is the time to pick some up; showrooms are making room for new lines that come out in August.

STORE Update your in-store video loop. For a change, forget the promotional videos and run something that’s got nothing to do with selling at all — Finding Dory, maybe, or some surfing clips.

OPERATIONS What’s your pre-opening drill? If it’s “All hands on deck!” you may want to try something more systematic. Many retailers use a 10-point checklist to make sure that all the important things are taken care of before they open the doors.

JUN. 23-29

MANAGEMENT We’ve recommended it dozens of times and we’re sure you haven’t done it: sign up for Toastmasters. (Find a club near you at toastmasters.org). In no time, you’ll be welcoming invitations to talk publicly.

LEGAL Brush up on your compliance. Check the Federal Trade Commission’s guides on disclosure. Go to ftc.gov and enter “jewelry guides” in the search box.

MERCHANDISING Gather with your staff to inspect your show finds and go through what you ordered during the recent buying season. Develop a product launch plan and schedule training to ensure the successful sell-through.

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National Selfie Day, Audio Book Appreciation Day and More June Dates to Mark

Happy Birthday to You … The world’s most sung song turns 160.

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21 What was once considered a petty self-indulgence is now viewed as a powerful marketing tool. Ahead of NATIONAL SELFIE DAY, draw up a strategy to get your customers to take more photos of themselves showing off their new jewelry or of themselves in front of any background featuring your business name. The ultimate goal is to get them to post the images on their social media pages.

1 During AUDIOBOOK APPRECIATION MONTH, do a Google search for “bestselling business audiobooks” and catch up on some of the great management advice that’s been published in the last few years.

19 The WORLD’S UGLIEST DOG CONTEST is held today. Hold a similar competition. Ask your staff to vote for what they believe is the most aesthetically challenged piece of jewelry in the store. Offer a spiff to whomever can sell it by the end of the summer Dog Days (Aug. 20).

27 “HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU” turns 160. Offer to send a singing telegram to anyone who buys a gift for a loved one who shares a birthday with the world’s most sung song.

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Manager's To Do

Add These Dates to Your To-Do List to Ensure a Productive May

Mother’s Day, the Vegas shows, summer and more guarantee it will be a busy month.

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May 5-11

SALES Everything should be in place for Mother’s Day (May 12). Remind salespeople that it’s a fantastic opportunity for add-on sales in the form of matching jewelry. What have you bundled for dad and daughter to buy together for Mom?

PLANNING If you’ve typically taken your annual vacation in July, why not shake things up a bit and opt for vacation in August this year? Who knows what your community’s jewelry needs are like in July if you’ve never really been present.

STRATEGY Vegas bound? (JCK begins May 31.) Hunker down with your POS system. Be clear on what you are trying to achieve at the show. What are your goals? To attract female self-purchasers, expand your bridal clientele with new bridal product, increase margin with in-house branded collections? (And keep an eye out for our June trends guide toward the end of the month at instoremag.com — it could be a huge help.)

May 12-18

MANAGEMENT Start meeting with staff at least monthly to share three “good things” to build on and three “development areas.”

MARKETING Your best customers are your current customers. Identify your 200 top customers. Draft a plan to market to them in the second half of 2019.

SECURITY Hotels in Vegas make it clear they are not responsible for loss or theft of items brought into their property. If you travel with goods, look into getting insurance.

May 19-25

OPERATIONS Hurricane season is ahead in many parts of the country. Run through a checklist to ensure that your bad weather protocol is up to speed.

BUYING This year, be organized and professional in front of your vendors in Vegas — prepare all your reports and forms. Re-confirm your appointments, and get cell phone numbers so you can contact them if you need to.

May 26-June 1

BUYING In Vegas, make a point to visit the Design Atelier at Couture and The Design Center at the JCK Show. The talented designers in these sections create jewelry unlike anything you may have seen, which will engage your most consistent clients while also opening up new markets.

SHOP Slow season project: Take photos of all waxes not already in your CAD library and add them.

MERCHANDISING With summer on the way, Larry Johnson says redo the props in your showcases to give a fresh look. Throw away those seashells in the pearl case and replace them with props that show your customer all the places in town where she can wear those beautiful pearls.

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