JCK Talks coordinator Diane Warga-Arias (far left) and LUXURY event director Sarin Bachmann (far right) with J.R. Dunn’s Sean Dunn and his mom, cofounder Ann Marie Dunn
J.R. Dunn Jewelers, an independent retailer in Lighthouse Point, Fla., nabbed the second annual LUXURY Retailer of the Year award Thursday morning, the third day of LUXURY at JCK Las Vegas 2015. This year’s finalists—honored in the area of retail redesign—also included Dianna Rae Jewelry in Lafayette, La.; G. Thrapp Jewelers in Indianapolis; Roberson’s Fine Jewelry in Little Rock, Ark.; and Borsheims Fine Jewelry in Omaha, Neb.
Ann Marie Dunn, J.R. Dunn’s 71-year-old cofounder, was visibly thrilled when LUXURY event director Sarin Bachmann called out her store’s name. “We are totally overwhelmed, in the best way,” Dunn said after stepping off the stage, the weighty glass award in her hands. “The last few days in the store have been totally nerve-racking—we’ve been trying to get everyone we know to vote. We are just so pleasantly surprised.”
Bachmann also sounded pleased with the results of the now-annual competition. “We were thrilled with the response from the LUXURY community, with over 2,600 total votes cast over two days,” she said. “J.R. Dunn was the hands-down winner through all voting channels including Facebook, Instragram, and text. This is a true representation of their fan following and marketing strategy.”
The LUXURY award presentation came after a retailer breakfast that included a fantastic keynote speech from Ben Smithee, chief strategy officer for Spych Market Analytics. The dynamic speaker urged the retail crowd to give millennial shoppers a reason to engage with their brands—to generate movements, not advertisements.
Smithee illustrated the flow of how a movement is created with a hilarious video showing a half-naked guy dancing alone among a seated crowd. Slowly, his exuberance attracts joiners until a gaggle of people are dancing with him.
“You have to create a movement that leads to actions,” Smithee said. “And that’s not easy…someone has to step outside and be the crazy person dancing in their underwear.”