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Tip Sheet

Tip Sheet: January 2005

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Four fresh ideas to better your business

[componentheading]INCREASE WEB TRAFFIC[/componentheading]

Want web traffic? Here’s a strategy used (very, very) successfully by American Express to draw surfers. They sold three $42,000 BMW Roadsters for only $4,000 each. First come, first served. To spread the massive traffic-load out, they sold one at noon, one at 4 p.m. and one at 9 p.m. Perhaps you might try a similar approach with diamond rings?

Source: Rick Segel

[componentheading]MARKET TO THE MIDDLE[/componentheading]

How can you reach a 19-year-old undergrad, a 31-year-old on the career path, and a 47-year-old who’s raising a toddler — with a single marketing message? The answer, according to a recent Los Angeles Times analysis: market to all of them as if they were 35. Why it works? Because these days, youngsters are more conservative, dressing in preppier styles and looking to the future, while aging Boomers are the opposite, shooting Botox, popping vitamins, and hanging on desperately to their youth.

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Source: Instore

[componentheading]ERR TOWARD AUTONOMY[/componentheading]

Something to remember for those of you who are breaking in new employees this month. Remember: It’s easier to give employees autonomy and freedom than it is to take it away. So, clearly state directions and expectations when employees are new to their jobs. Then, let autonomy and flexibility be an earned right of their performance.

Source: Bob Nelson, 365 Ways to Manage Better

[componentheading]ON THE OTHER HAND[/componentheading]

Sell right hand rings? To pump up your sales, why not try the strategy used by the manufacturer Caressa, which has labelled a different right-hand ring design for each day of the week? For completists, simply having Friday’s ring won’t be enough … they’re have to have Monday’s, Tuesday’s, etc.  

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Source: Instore

[span class=note]This story is from the January 2005 edition of INSTORE[/span]

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Tip Sheet

How to Build Holiday Traffic, Keeping Your Staff Healthy, and More Tips for December

One jeweler keeps a “wellness box” in the store.

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MANAGEMENTThe Power of Appreciation

To be sure, salespeople like performance-based pay incentives, especially when the fish are biting, but to ensure that the drive and focus of the holiday season extend into the new year, don’t overlook the power of appreciation, says Wharton professor Adam Grant. “Extrinsic motivators can stop having much meaning —your bonus gets spent, your raise in pay feels like your just due, your new title doesn’t sound so important once you have it,” he told The Wall Street Journal last year. “But the sense that other people appreciate what you do sticks with you.” So, give the people what they want, and what they want is compliments and pizza, he says.

HealthPrep a Flu Kit

Flu activity typically starts to pick up around now. This year, be prepared with a “wellness” box in the back of the store. The medicine kit at Toner Jewelers in Overland Park, KS, includes EmergenC, cough drops, Vitamin C drops, pain medicine, alcohol wipes, Lysol and more, says manager Alisha Moore. “Temperatures vary so much at this time of year that someone is always sick.”

MarketingPet Appeal

It can be hard to tell what is most important in the lives of millennials, but pets are certainly up there. Gold Casters Fine Jewelry in Bloomington, IN, had the field covered last year with a clever marketing offer in which customers were invited to come in for a photo session with Santa. “Two days with dogs, bring your dog in for a picture with Santa. One week for children,” explains manager Georgena Kincaid.

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Customer ServiceChristmas Hit List

As the key holiday selling period approaches, Natasha Henderson, owner of Saxon’s Fine Jewelers, Bend, OR, prepares her “hit list.” “It’s a chalk board and I write down the customer’s name as I see a piece of inventory that will fit their significant other or even for a self-purchase. I also include clients that I am just going to call and make sure they know I am available and have specifics in mind for them,” she explains.

MarketingBlogs That Work

December is the most popular month for would-be grooms to pop the question. If you don’t have a blog post titled “32 Places to Propose In and Around (Your City)”, you should, a la Reis-Nichols Jewelers in Indianapolis, IN. instoremag.com/indianapolisproposal

ProductivityDo Breaks Better

The most important thing to understand about breaks is that they are not a deviation from performance; they are part of performance, says Dan Pink in his latest business best-seller, When: The Scientific Secrets Of Perfect Timing. “And the most restorative breaks are social rather than solo, outside not inside, moving instead of stationary, and fully detached rather than semi-detached.”

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How to Engage Clients in Conversation, Being More Productive, and More Tips for October

It’s also a good idea to hold store sales prior to December.

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HUMAN RESOURCESBonuses? Let them Eat Cake

Bonus season is on the way in many parts of the country. If that includes your business, something to think about: When unequal rewards are given out, there will be less dissatisfaction if they aren’t actually countable, says Kellogg Management professor Neal Roese. Research showed people who received less cake than counterparts weren’t as dissatisfied as those receiving less cash, focusing more on what they received rather than what they didn’t, he writes in Kellogg Insights.

4 Dead After Jewelry-Store Robbery Leads to Police Chase and Shootout (Video)
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4 Dead After Jewelry-Store Robbery Leads to Police Chase and Shootout (Video)

Truck Slams Jewelry Store in $200,000 Burglary — Watch the Video
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Truck Slams Jewelry Store in $200,000 Burglary — Watch the Video

Video: How to Achieve a $100,000 Day in Your Jewelry Store
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Video: How to Achieve a $100,000 Day in Your Jewelry Store

SALESFlip the Script

Instead of asking your customers small-talk questions, such as “How’s work?” or “How are you?” try big talk, says Judi Holler, author of Fear Is My Homeboy and a speaker at the recent Jewelers of America National Convention. She recommends questions such as, “Are you working on anything exciting lately?” or “What was the highlight of your day?” It will make you memorable to your customer. You’ll engage your customer more personally and learn something new, too.

PROMOTIONSAvoid December Sales

Don’t plan a big sale for December, says Deric Metzger, owner of DeMer Jewelry in Carlsbad, CA. Customers have depleted their holiday funds by then and you’ll have no time to complete a custom order should you get one. His advice? Get in early. “We offer our final sale of the year in October (and advertise it as such) to give people a jump on the holiday season,” he says. “It relieves the stress of the last-minute rush for them and us. Plus it eliminates most of the haggle-over-every-dollar attitude that frantic shoppers seem to get the closer it gets to the end of the year.”

EXPERIENCECreate a Virtual Storefront

Include a photo of your storefront on your website, along with text-based directions. It makes it easier for shoppers to find your store and eases threshold resistance, participants at the recent Stuller Bridge Conference heard.

PERSONALRekindle the Joy

Do one thing every day that you loved as a kid. “This is usually the fuel that can power your life,” writes entrepreneur and business author James Altucher on his blog.

PRODUCTIVITYThe Decision Hour

Once a week, spend an hour making choices. A lot of things masquerading as “things you have to work on” are really decisions you need to make, notes Steve Chandler in his book Time Warrior. Many can be made instantaneously; the notion that you need to gather more information is often an avoidance technique. Make it a game: challenge yourself to make as many decisions as you can in an hour, and see how many items you can nuke from your list. It’s weirdly energizing, he says.

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How to Sell More ‘Spa Treatments’ for Jewelry, and More Tips for September

Millennial shoppers respond to education, privacy and transparency.

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TIME MANAGEMENTAim for Busy, Not Rushed

How should you strive to feel when working? Busy, but not rushed. Research undertaken by the University of Maryland found this is when people are happiest. And when you’re happiest — meaning engaged and in the flow as opposed to giddy with joy — you invariably do your best work. So, start creating realistic schedules, stop checking email every 15 minutes, take breaks to exercise, and stop letting other people set your deadlines (yes, you could finish the job by tomorrow, but Friday is best for everyone.)

MARKETINGA Time for Pampering

One of the key challenges at this time of the year is how to get customers in the door. The Gem Collection in Tallahassee, FL, does it with a “Spa Treatment” for rings. The treatment, which is recommended annually, includes inspection of stones by hand, ultrasonic cleaning, steaming of the stones to remove excess dirt, refinishing to remove scratches, polishing the ring, and for white gold jewelry, a rhodium finishing, all for one price. “The spa treatment name was used so that the customer feels as if their jewelry is being pampered instead of worked on,” explains co-owner Don Vodicka. “This has raised our repair sales and keeps our customers very happy.”

MARKETINgShout It in Brass

If you buy your diamonds from Antwerp, it’s always a good idea to let the world know about it. Molinelli’s Jewelers in Pocatello, ID, actually has it in brass letters on their wall.

SALESLaying on a Bridal FeasT

Showcases — who needs them? That’s the diamond-selling approach at Siegel’s Jewelry in Paso Robles, CA, where customers are encouraged to sit with staff at a custom-made, long community table to discuss jewelry. “I designed my store with a lot of seating space in order to show diamonds effectively, and to make my employees and customers more comfortable,” explains owner Ken Siegel.

STRATEGY“How” is the Enemy

Something all true entrepreneurs know: “How” is the enemy. “We always want to know how things will happen,” says Claudia Azula, a popular podcaster and co-author of the Power Of No. “But how is the enemy because it blocks the possibilities that open up when we are willing to not know. When you don’t know about tomorrow, all you can do is focus on doing your best today.” Stop thinking, Just go do it.

SALESKeep Me Safe and Prosperous

Buy an engagement ring at Eichhorn Jewelry in Decatur, IN, and you also get a “Keep Me” — an original document that travels with the piece of jewelry. The paper “encourages customers to spend dollars by emphasizing the legacy aspect of their purchase,” explains owner Eileen Eichhorn.

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