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Publisher’s Note: On the Lookout for the Next Big Thing

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PUBLISHER’S NOTE

On the Lookout for
the Next Big Thing

We’re moving into the eyecare field,
and no, it’s not as strange as you may think.

BY DAN KISCH
Published in the January 2014 issue

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One of the best ways to grow
your business is to broaden
your merchandise mix. We’ve
been saying it for years. Adding
to your product selection brings
in new customers and gives you
the opportunity to sell more
to your existing ones. We’ll be
talking about that a lot in 2014,
especially at The SMART Show
in Chicago in April.

At SmartWork Media we know
it’s important that we not only
talk the talk but walk the walk.
So this month, we’re launching
a new magazine, which we are
very excited about. It’s called
INVISION and it has nothing to
do with jewelry (well maybe a
little bit, but more on that later).
The magazine is in the eyecare
field and is devoted to making
independent optical retailers
better, smarter and more effective
(sound familiar?).

In many ways, the optical
retail market is
very similar to jewelry.
Independents
represent about
half the volume,
they wear a bunch
of hats and they
need lots of information
about the many disciplines
they must master.

I had mentioned earlier that
the eyecare field might have a little
to do with jewelry, and it’s not
just about helping the consumer
walk out of the store feeling great
about the way they look.

Back at the beginning of the
20th century many, if not most,
of the opticians in the United
States were jewelers. One of
our Cool Stores, Murphy’s in
Hamburg, PA, is celebrating its
100th anniversary this year. They
have a great photograph on their
website — murphysjewelers.
com — which says “F.J. Murphy
— Jeweler — Optician.”

Another ad I came across for
jeweler-opticians was from D.L.
Cleeland in Butler, PA. Their
motto was “Refracting the Eyes”
presumably with eyeglasses or
diamonds.

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All this proves,
once again, that
jewelers are a resilient
bunch. You’ve
found many different
ways to make
a living, from silverware
to silver beads and from
selling gold to buying it.

So as you move into 2014, be
on the lookout for the next big
thing. And if you need a pair of
glasses to sharpen your vision,
we know where to find them.


Dan Kisch
[email protected]

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