WIXON JEWELERS has a 4.8-star Google rating. But what makes that statistic really impressive is that it is based on 64 reviews. On Yelp, its average rating is 5 stars. The consensus on both sites, in a nutshell: “I couldn’t have asked for a better experience at Wixon.”
What’s not surprising — considering its stellar reviews and quality website — is that Wixon Jewelers has a full-time, in-house marketing director, Jayme Pretzloff, as well as a graphic designer.
In-house marketing allows for flexibility as well as consistency. “We’re a two-person show doing the bulk of everything in-house,” Pretzloff says. “Our web agency does the hard programming on the website’s back end, but copy, graphics and web design are all done in-house. You know your product better than some ad agency and you have creative control and execution. You can get everything out on time and you can turn on a dime to adapt to changes.”
Pretzloff, who has been on staff for three years, says his first assignment was to focus on the digital side of the branding package. Before 2012, Wixon’s online presence was negligible; now it’s outstanding. “It’s always tough with reviews,” says Pretzloff, “and it seems that you tend to hear from the negative people — that’s the nature of the beast. If they’ve had a bad experience, they want to tell everyone about it.” The only way to circumvent that is to make sure they don’t have a sad tale to tell. “Our goal is to provide an incredible experience whether they’ve come in to have their watch battery replaced or they’re having an engagement ring designed.”
Wixon’s staff encourages satisfied customers to write a review and hands them a reminder card, but it doesn’t offer them incentives to do so. “In everything we do, we take the approach of doing it the right way,” Pretzloff says, “rather than using gimmicks or tricks. Where some companies would do a big push for reviews we wanted it to be organic and come across that way.”
Branding Elements at Wixon Jewelers
Jayme Pretzloff: ““In everything we do, we take the approach of doing it the right way rather than using gimmicks or tricks.”
Copy is written specifically for each radio station. “If we know a certain demographic is very conservative, we know how to craft the message for them,” Pretzloff says. The message will be targeted to how the demographic would use the store — engagement, service, watches, etc. The morning host of the local CBS news talk radio station talks about his experiences at Wixon Jewelers. “He’s so important to his listenership that whatever he says is really gold,” Pretzloff says. “He’s really able to talk in a personal sense. That’s the way we want the message to come across. People can see through all the smoke and mirrors in marketing. When you do have a brand that has that true sense of service and is doing all the right things for all the right reasons that comes through.”
Wixon does still advertise frequently in print ads targeting the affluent, on radio stations and outdoor displays. Online, they’ve perfected their SEO to drive traffic to their website. They’ve spent money on Google ads and time on social media. “Instead of having each piece work independently, when you have a holistic plan, you’re able to leverage all of your media spends to build off each other,” Pretzloff says. “We need to be where our clients are.”
All magazine ads and website photos are shot in-house. “I realized we didn’t have consistent images available and there wasn’t always a front shot and a side shot,” Pretzloff says. “Some were vendor images. We needed to find a way to cost effectively do photos in-house, to have consistency but not have it be ridiculously time consuming. In retrospect, all of the time we invested in that was well worth it. Now we don’t have to pay several hundred dollars an hour to have a pro shoot it, and we can have any angle we want — and details of each piece.”
Custom Champagne Bottles
When a client picks up an engagement ring purchased from Wixon, they are surprised with a bottle of champagne. The bottle features a front label with a large photo of the engagement ring and is customized with the couple’s names. The back label also has a customized message on it. Some couples use it to celebrate their engagements, some save it for their first anniversary; others display it in their house. The bottle is often featured on social media posts. “We always look for ways to differentiate ourselves from other jewelry stores,” Pretzloff says. “It wasn’t our original intent, but it’s good marketing, too. Response from clients has been overwhelming.”
Out of the Box Events
Store events always deliver signature cocktails and a crowd-drawing surprise. The Wixons flew in a multimilliondollar Bugatti supercar for a recent watch event and their garden party featured human garden statues, painted white — so convincing, they caused a few spilled drinks when they moved. (Unlike Greek sculptures, these models were fully clothed.)
Pretzloff oversees all of the store’s branding to ensure it reflects the message of luxury and reaches the target demographic — ages 35 to 65 and most often male. “We are a huge jewelry store, but we don’t talk about our size,” he says. “We try to connect with our client. That’s what gets difficult as you grow. Especially within print, our approach has been witty. If you can get someone to laugh, they are more likely to remember your message. We don’t want our marketing to be dry and matter of fact, because that’s not fun.” Pretzloff says people will save print ads and bring them in five years later. “They’ll say, ‘Now is the time to design my ring, and this is the one I want.’”
Wixon launched a new website in May 2013, which received terrific feedback from clients and industry associates. It features responsive design, meaning that the web pages adapt to whatever device the visitor is using for the best possible browsing experience. So it looks completely different on an iPhone than it does on a computer screen. All of the content on the website’s education section is produced in-house. “Even if the visitor doesn’t buy from us, it’s important that they get their questions answered, so that they can make the most informed decision possible,” Pretzloff says.