Rethinking Gold

Now that gold has broken the $675 an ounce barrier for the first time since 1980, you should reassess the role gold jewelry plays in your merchandising mix, and make sure you understand gold's brand characteristics. “Gold” is not a singular concept in the consumer's mind; it assumes different attributes based on karatage, sales environment, advertising, and customers' incomes. Gold jewelry ranges from the cheap and cheery world of 10k Disney character charms found at discount malls and jewelry kiosks to the rarefied elegance of a 24k handmade necklace by Gurhan found in the finest department stores and high-end retail jewelers. Advertising ranges from newspaper circulars promoting “50% Off!” to ads in luxe publications like Town & Country. Gold jewelry is segregated into categories, and marketing efforts for gold's three basic U.S. karatages (10k, 14k, and 18+k) need to b

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