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What You Need to Be Doing in Your Business This May

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Elizabeth Gibson of Eliza Page

Week 1May 1-6

OPERATIONS Step outside your store. Through your windows assess the visuals and displays, but mostly watch some customer-associate interactions. It’s amazing how much more you can observe without sound. Research suggests words account for only around 7 percent of communication. What kinds of things are your salespeople communicating?

MARKETING Host a men’s-only shopping night to promote diamond jewelry ahead of Mother’s Day. 

BRAND AWARENESS Someone, somewhere is talking about your business on social media. To keep track, set up Google Alerts for your name and your business name. For result type, click on “Everything” to receive email notifications whenever your store gets mentioned on blogs or discussion sites. 

Week 2 May 8-13

STAFF INCENTIVES During the final run-up to Mother’s Day, motivate staff with a contest to win an extra generous staff discount on a piece for their own mother.

SALES You’ll have lots of Mother’s Day shoppers in your store this week. Don’t forget to ask them if they’d like to pick up a little something for themselves as well.

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BUYING The big shows get closer with every week (JCK Vegas starts June 5). Start setting up vendor appointments — don’t count on “swinging by.” Get cell phone numbers so you can contact them if you need at the show.

Week 3 May 15-20

ADVERTISING Yes, June means weddings, but possibly better: anniversaries! Send out cards, along with a special offer for diamond upgrades, to customers with anniversaries in June. Offer special deals for couples celebrating a big anniversary.

MARKETING Book your Father’s Day newspaper ad to run the first Sunday in June. Repetition is key to getting the message home. Repetition is key to getting the message home. Repetition is …

STAFFING Give some thought to recruiting college or high-school students as summer help. Do not be afraid to give them some responsibility — working on cleaning up your mailing lists, retagging, etc.

Week 4 May 22-27

MERCHANDISING Showcase graduation gifts: Create a special case in your store for smaller-ticket, sentimental items. Your “congratulations” case can include charms, gold starter jewelry (hoops, chains, etc.), sterling silver bracelets, sterling silver cufflinks and entry-level watches. 

Week 5 May 29-June 3

DISPLAYS Incorporate natural elements like leather, horn and wood into your display props. Says Austin, Texas retailer Elizabeth Gibson (PICTURED) of Eliza Page: “Jewelry is hard and metallic, so we try to soften it up when appropriate by using wood and horn. We even have some rocks, leather and felt, and all of that softens the look.”

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CLIENTELING Make those six-month service calls on all those products you sold last December. Invite your customers to come in to have their jewelry checked and cleaned.


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Downsizing? Wilkerson Is Here to Help

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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