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Showing Customers the Magic



Most jewelers involve the customer in the retail selling process by qualifying the prospect, discovering needs, demonstrating value, and closing the sale.

Plante Jewelers in Swansea, MA, not only demonstrates value, but also demonstrates the actual manufacturing process right in front of the prospect. ?One day while a good customer of ours was watching her ring being sized the idea came to me,? says owner Pierre Plante. ?We included the idea in our monthly planning meeting and decided to call upon Tom Kruskal, of Tom Kruskal Designs to participate in this with us. We discussed all the parameters of having him bring in his anvil, torches, gold stock, and his wonderful creativity. We centered the promotion around the customers watching their new earrings be made, literally right before their eyes. Our supplier was ecstatic over the idea, and we tied up all the loose ends.? 

Plante Jewelers created a special announcement for the one-night event, which was sent to all its female customers. Wine and cheese was served, and a special prize drawing was held. Says Plante: ?It was phenomenal. Many of our women customers wore their Tom Kruskal jewelry, and were thrilled to meet the designer himself.? Even men, usually not as interested in such events as the women, came in large numbers to see the designer form, pound, solder, and polish his one-of-a-kind creations.  

Since the event, the company’s earring sales have reached their highest levels ever. Plante says, ?Our customers now have a whole new appreciation for what actually takes place in the fabrication process of the designs we choose to market.? Later, the company also brought in its colored-stone supplier from Sri Lanka for a similar event promoting natural unheated sapphires. Says the storeowner: ?We showed the exact maps the miners use, and many pictures explaining the arduous mining process. The customers loved it, and many fine specimens were purchased as a result of the event.? 

Since then, special events marketing has become an important part of Plante Jewelers’ promotional planning. ?What is really cool,? says Plante, ?is that now people passing by our windows make it a point to peer in to see what might be happening!?


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Orin Mazzoni, Jr., the owner of Orin Jewelers in Garden City and Northville, Michigan, decided it was time to downsize. With two locations and an eye on the future, Mazzoni asked Wilkerson to take the lead on closing the Garden City store. Mazzoni met Wilkerson’s Rick Hayes some years back, he says, and once he made up his mind to consolidate, he and Hayes “set up a timeline” for the sale. Despite the pandemic, Mazzoni says the everything went smoothly. “Many days, we had lines of people waiting to get in,” he says, adding that Wilkerson’s professionalism made it all worthwhile. “Whenever you do an event like this, you think, ‘I’ve been doing this my whole life. Do I really need to pay someone to do it for me?’ But then I realized, these guys are the pros and we need to move forward with them.”

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