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Manager's To Do

Manager’s To Do For Jewelers: July 2016

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Week 1 / JULY 4-9

Marketing It’s not just the nation’s birthday this week; July along with August make this the No. 1 period for birthdays for all Americans (almost one in five are born in these two months.) Hit your mailing list with a birthday reminder. Somebody knows somebody who is having a big day.

Planning Fine-tune strategy: Work out a schedule to assess your goals, find new ways to automate operations, grow your network, and improve inventory turn.

Marketing If you are in Vegas, try
something different on the last day:
Spend some time with the software
manufacturers to get up to speed on
what’s new on the technology front.

Marketing Check client files to see who needs to have an appraisal updated in terms of current value, and send out a postcard reminder.

Week 2 / JULY 11-16

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Self-DevelopmentSeek out novelty this summer: Your brain loves new experiences and sensations, which help it continue to build neural connections for work and life.

Staff Spend time tightening job descriptions. Standardization ensures every employee performs the same procedure and provides the same excellent service for every client. That predictability and consistency helps secure a customer for life.

Sales Floor Pick three things you want every customer to experience in the store, and talk to staff about how to expose clients to these areas.

Week 3 / JULY 18-23

Family Get your kids in the store this month so they can see how things are done and why it’s so important to your customers that you do a good job.

Management Peter Drucker believed that in order to grow, a business must have a systematic policy to get rid of “the outgrown, the obsolete, the unproductive.” Start that process today: Make a list of a project, a policy, or a product that you should consider killing (solicit nominations from staff). Commit to killing one part of your existing business by Aug. 15.

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Customer RelationsIn order to have your ducks in a row for a wrapping/packaging roll-out that doesn’t drown in a sea of cliché’d red and green, you need to start thinking snowmen even while you’re still soaking up the summer sun. Consider forms, materials and visuals that can evoke the tone and spirit of the season all winter long and won’t expire with Christmas.

Week 4 / July 25-30

Tech Clean up your POS mailing system, find addresses that are missing and check why some emails may be bouncing back. More than one-third of consumers changed at least one of their email addresses in 2015 — due to job changes or other economic factors

Internet Assign a different competitor’s website to every member of staff with a mission to find something great there, and then bring it back to share with the team. The onus should be on positive features.

Bench Go green out back. Install a sink trap, capture dust in floor mats or carpets and vacuum frequently with a dedicated vacuum. Use a bucket instead of letting the water run when washing items and switch to environmentally friendly alternatives such as cadmium-free solders, fluoride-free fluxes and maybe citric pickle solution. There’s money to be made or saved.

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

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Manager's To Do

A Trick to Selling More Platinum, And Other Manager’s To-Do Items for September

And here are some great tips for infographics in your store.

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Sep. 1-7

INVENTORY The economy may be slowing a tad, but the wealthy keep getting richer. That is allowing more people to trade up from the standard 1-carat diamond engagement ring. But to sell 2-, 3-, or 4-carat pieces, you need to have a few on hand, says David Brown of the Edge Retail Academy. Start experimenting with more expensive bridal sets.

MARKETING Conduct an advertising review. If it’s bridal sales you desire, put that shotgun away. Pick one or two advertising media, based on their reach and return on investment, and concentrate on them. That requires courage and perseverance, but it’s the surest way to break through the chatter and win that key top-of-mind presence in your local market that will deliver engagement ring sales.

Sep. 8-14

STAFF Few things are more important to staff than having the sense that their work matters. As bridal season approaches, make it a constant refrain in your strategy meetings: you’re helping people with one of the most important decisions of their life.

SHOWROOM “It’s remarkable,” says merchandising expert Sally Furrer, “how often diamond areas are underlit in stores.” Crank up the lights.

Sep. 15-21

TRAINING The rise of the bead phenomenon in the last decade caused many jewelers to cut back on diamond sales training. If that happened in your store, look to bring in a trainer who specializes in bridal goods. It’s a whole different skill set.

MARKETING Twitter’s search function, along with free applications like TweetDeck, can be great tools for market research and lead generation. Start monitoring your competitors’ brand names and hashtags to see what people are saying about them and you. Set keywords related to bridal sales in your market and don’t be afraid to follow up (unsolicited messages from strangers is a fact of life in the Twitter-sphere).

Sep. 22-28

SOCIAL Want to take your social media efforts to the next level while educating your clientele about bridal in a way they’ll remember? Think infographics. Whether charting the evolution of diamond cuts or providing tips on ring cleaning, infographics are a great shareable way to communicate your message. Try these free infographic websites: Piktochart.com, Venngage.com, Easel.ly.

SALES Want to sell more platinum? Highlight its staying power. Keep an old white-gold ring and an old platinum one behind the counter to show customers what happens to the two metals after a few years. One of platinum’s strengths is the durability of its white color, which won’t fade or change (like an enduring love, hint, hint) and will continue to complement a diamond, as opposed to white gold, which fades to yellow.

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Yarr! It’s International Talk Like a Pirate Day and More Important Dates for September

“I’ll be paying top dollar for whatever golden loot ye’ve got stashed in your little treasure chest.”

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19 Many jewelers seem to have forgotten what a lucrative earner gold buying can be. Luckily, International Talk Like A Pirate Day is here to remind you. Yarr, have some fun with your advertising. “Yes, me hearties, Cap’n Jack Black Diamond has gone straight. I’ll be paying top dollar for your doubloons, old lockets or whatever golden loot ye’ve got stashed in your little treasure chests. Come see the Cap’n before the sharks get ye.”

01 On NATIONAL NO RHYME (NOR REASON) DAY, challenge your customers on social media to come up with words that can’t be rhymed. Three you can probably put to good use in your posts that day are “spirit,” “silver” and “woman.”

06 Today is FIGHT PROCRASTINATION DAY, and if you’re one of the many afflicted, try this trick: when jotting down a to-do item, keep rephrasing it until it involves the use of your limbs: “Pick up phone and call …”, “Open laptop and search for …”

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Remembering Woodstock, The Little One’s First Day in Kindergarten, and More Useful August Dates

You’re always busy, but this month, get things done.

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19 Mark the 30th anniversary of the launch of Stephen Covey’s THE 7 HABITS OF HIGHLY EFFECTIVE PEOPLE by doing something in its spirit: keep a journal of everything you do, broken down into 30-minute increments. At the end of each workday, assign a value — 1, 2 or 3 (the lowest) — to your time, and at the end of the week, evaluate the results. They may well surprise you. Obviously you want to be spending at least half your time on No. 1s.

1 August is GET READY FOR KINDERGARTEN MONTH. On the first day of school, invite all new kindergarten moms to come in for mimosas and snacks. They can reward themselves for surviving this milestone.

4 The FIRST ELECTRIC LIGHTBULB sparked to life 140 years ago today. Mark the occasion with a brainstorming session with staff for fourth-quarter promotions.

15 Fifty years ago today, the promise of free music, a good time, and … umm … a pretty good shot at “getting lucky” drew 400,000 young people to WOODSTOCK, NY. To many folks, that’s much the same promise that jewelry makes (minus the music). Roll back the years with a store party.

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