Luxury by JCK: Robin Leach delivers keynote address

LAS VEGAS — Robin Leach, host of television’s long-running “The Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous,” presented the keynote address at the opening breakfast this morning for the Luxury by JCK Show.

Leach’s address emphasized the role jewelry plays as part of the luxury lifestyle, and stressed the importance of both luxury and lifestyle as consumer categories. He also discussed the pervasiveness of the celebrity culture in the United States, and outlined actionable ideas jewelers can use to tap into the celebrity mystique in their own stores.

If trends originate on the red carpet, as many believe they do, then display pictures of celebrities wearing the latest trends in your windows,” he said. He also reminded jewelers to position themselves as experts on the luxury lifestyle.

“You should be the people defining the glamour of your business. Don’t leave it all to the magazines,” he said. “Lifestyle has become such an important category that every television station and newspaper devotes space and time to it but in a small town they don’t have the money or the ability to get big-name columnists, so jewelers have to position themselves as the town expert on the luxury lifestyle. If you’re the expert, they’ll quote you, he said, and that can only be good for your business.”

He also talked about shifts in society, and the importance of new customers for fine jewelry such as the hip-hop “bling bling” crowd. “If you’re allergic to MTV or VH1 or rap music, get over it. And get used to it. You need to be tapped into the trends that affect your clients,” he said.

He finished with a simple but powerful reminder to jewelers: “The best things in life are free. Romance doesn’t cost much—until it turns to love, and then you are the first stop.”