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Tip Sheet

The Power of Sidewalk Chalkboards … and More Tips for Jewelers

Get yourself a good old blackboard, do something thinking in the shower; more.





Chalk One Up

One of the best — and most overlooked — low-cost marketing techniques is the good old blackboard, says Entrepreneur Magazine’s Ultimate Small Business Marketing Guide. Get one made with your company’s business name and logo permanently at the top. Then, each day, write out your latest special offers in colorful chalk and put over your cash register, in your front window, or outside your store. Remember, just like grade school, neatness counts.


Doff Your Hats

When Ragnar Jewellers in Vancouver, BC, Canada re-opened after finishing an extensive remodeling project, they welcomed customers back with a gala party. The theme? “Hats Off To Ragnar, The Renovation is Complete”. And as part of the bash, Ragnar held a best hat contest for party-goers. The results, as you can see, were head-spinning!


Remember This

For all of you out there who are wondering whether or not you should take that big risk, we give you this quote from author Gaelen Foley: “Leap, and the net will appear.”


Cool Off

Inc. magazine columnist Norm Brodsky is a businessman who likes to take risks. But after a series of poor decisions bankrupted one of his companies, he made up a series of rules that, while still allowing him to take risks, would help cut down on poor decisions. One that you might consider stealing for yourself: Brodsky vowed he would never make an important decision without taking a shower. Brodsky says that he does his best thinking in the shower. And since he only takes one shower a day, Brodsky’s “shower rule” gives the entrepreneur a much-needed “cooling off” period, both literally and figuratively.


Create Luxury Invites

There’s a popular trend in India that, if it ever came here, could quickly fatten up your bank account. The trend is to send wedding invitations (usually only to selected special guests) that are studded with gold, diamonds rubies, emeralds, Swarovski crystals and other semi-precious gemstones. The least expensive cards cost about 5,000 Indian rupees each (or about US $110). Get your design department started on some now!


Stick ‘Em Up

Want a ultra low-cost way to add personality and romance to your bathroom? Tack pages of your favorite poetry up on the walls. For Liz Lambert, owner of the hip Hotel San Jose in Austin, TX, this was a cost-saving idea that eventually became one of the hotel’s most popular features. (Extra tip: If the pages start disappearing, it could be a sign that you’re not stocking enough toilet paper.)


Humanize Yourself

Doing a Power Point presentation to a local business group? Break the ice by “accidentally” dropping an incorrect slide into your presentation. Entrepreneur Magazine’s Ultimate Small Business Marketing Guide tells of one speaker whose show was interrupted by a picture of himself … as a baby, in a bathtub, naked. The crowd roared as the speaker feigned embarrassment, saying “Hmm, I wonder how that got in there”. And what could have become a ho-hum speech instantly became memorable.


Lead A Tour

Spring has sprung, or at least, is about to. Which makes it a great time of year to follow the advice of sales and motivational consultant Kelly Robertson of The Robertson Training Group, who recommends taking a few of your best customers on a winery tour. Ply them with premium wines, give them a great meal. It’s a great way to say thanks, and even better, associate your store with the finer things in life.

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When There’s No Succession Plan, Call Wilkerson

Bob Wesley, owner of Robert C. Wesley Jewelers in Scottsdale, Ariz., was a third-generation jeweler. When it was time to enjoy life on the other side of the counter, he weighed his options. His lease was nearing renewal time and with no succession plan, he decided it was time to call Wilkerson. There was plenty of inventory to sell and at first, says Wesley, he thought he might try to manage a sale himself. But he’s glad he didn’t. “There’s no way I could have done this as well as Wilkerson,” he says. Wilkerson took responsibility for the entire event, with every detail — from advertising to accounting — done, dusted and managed by the Wilkerson team. “It’s the complete package,” he says of the Wilkerson method of helping jewelers to easily go on to the next phase of their lives. “There’s no way any retailer can duplicate what they’ve done.”

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