By Cynthia Sliwa
I attended the first session of a multi-class workshop last week. At the meeting, each attendee was asked to introduce herself and talk about her business.
When my turn came, I introduced myself, explained my background, and then talked about Jewelry Savvy, the book Caroline and I wrote. As is my wont, I asked how many people in the group like to wear jewelry. There was unanimous head nodding and smiling.
“And how many of you have ever had any class or other training about jewelry?”
Amidst all the shaking heads, one woman raised her hand, something that has never happened before when I’ve asked this question of a group.
“That’s wonderful!” I said. “Please tell us about it.”
“I worked with a personal image stylist.”
“Ahhh!” Indeed, she had worked with one of my colleagues from the Association of Image Consultants International (AICI). And, may I say, her choice in jewelry—in particular, an unusual necklace—was exquisite.
At the break in the workshop, I asked her to tell me about her experience.
“Oh, I love the clothing the image consultant helped me choose, but my weight has gone up since I worked with her, so some of that no longer fits me. But the jewelry pieces she helped design for me are my absolute favorites. I wear those pieces all the time.”
What her image consultant did for her was to come up with jewelry design ideas and suggestions for color based on her features and personality and took these ideas to the jewelry designer she regularly brought her clients to. The jeweler was able to execute a collection of designs for her client’s consideration. She told me that she bought “all but one or two” of them.
Visit http://www.aici.org/ and determine which image consultants reside in or near your community. Invite them in for an opportunity to learn about your store, inventory and services. Image consultants have clients who want to update their jewelry wardrobes, and you can be the consultants’ go-to resource for all their client’s fine jewelry needs. Be sure to discuss any design services you offer, as the offer of customized pieces can be very appealing to someone who is transforming and upgrading a wardrobe.
Conversations may routinely come up with your various customers about upcoming events and what on earth they’re going to wear. An image consultant can help your customers make these decisions and refine their wardrobes, working with your inventory, of course, as the source for adornment. Refer your customers to the image consultant. Offer the consultant a commission for the pieces you sell that she recommended. This is an affiliation well worth developing, likely to bring you additional sales and highly satisfied customers.