August 2009

Holiday Events Connect With Customers

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Designer to Watch: Mark Maxwell

location and contact san diego; (760) 917-1647; www.mmgoldsmith.com. signature style and inspiration arch and curve shapes reminiscent of art nouveau styling are crafted in 18k yellow gold and vitreous enamel using old world techniques like hand engraving. fun fact maxwell was an instructor at the gemological institute of america for 12 years before launching his own business.

Zale Unveils Modern, ‘Un-Intimidating’ Store

zale corp. recently unveiled a modern and very different store prototype in north park, texas. the store is meant to be similar to apple retail stores, ceo neal goldberg told jck. they have lower retail counters, and customers and sales associates stand on the same side, in an attempt to remove the intimidation factor from jewelry buying.

Jewelers Hide Boxes, Find Good Will

trey bailey admits that the promotion that has come to define his store grew out of a wacky idea. “i thought how cool it would be if you are walking through the park and find a beautifully wrapped package and it’s a free gift,” says the owner of bailey’s fine jewelry in rocky hill, n.c. now this simple idea, wacky or not, has grown “way bigger and better than we ever dreamed,…

Finlay Offers Itself for Sale

continuing to express “significant doubt” about its ability to carry on, finlay enterprises is launching a formal process to let parties bid on its assets. a statement noted that finlay has previously received unsolicited interest from a number of investors and now wants to explore any offers.

Memo: Best of Intentions or Curse on the Industry?

most businesses start out using memo for the right reasons, but problems often arise. memo allows retailers to test new product lines, find out if their best customers are more interested in product innovation or variations, and determine critical price points. it helps newer stores manage initial cash outlays while cash flow is still ramping up and lets them test their market’s taste and passi…

Stores

south luxury jeweler van cleef & arpels will open a store at the streets of buckhead, a new luxury mixed-use development in atlanta’s buckhead district that is slated to open in spring 2010. a new pandora store opened in the mercato shopping center in naples, fla., according to a news report. west the el paso, texas, district of the small business administration recently selected susan ei…

Role Play: Hate It, But Do It Anyway

most people hate to role play. as professional salespeople, however, you must do it. athletes practice and lawyers run mock trials. sales is the only profession in which the workers practice on their customers. it’s no wonder most stores don’t maximize their potential. salespeople should think about what they’re going to say to a customer before they say it.

Jeweler Gives Treat for Troops’ Families

ever since fox’s fine jewelry began giving out necklaces to the unemployed, the promotion-slash-charitable gesture has swept ijo jewelers across the country. (see “jeweler makes headlines with helping hand,” jck, may 2009, p. 82.) but sonny leclair, of quality jewelers, in bangor, maine, came up with his own twist for mother’s day: he gave away a pearl necklace to anyone who has a r…

Book Smarts

the golden rules for managers: 119 incredible lessons for leadership success, by frank mcnair. sourcebooks, $16.99 (256 pages) mcnair (how you make the sale) distills his management wisdom into 119 aphorisms grouped into nine crucial categories: vision and planning, motivation, expectations, coaching, feedback and performance management, rewards and consequences, relationship management, self-…

Marketing With E-mail

here are seven ways to improve e-mail marketing. jewelry marketers must use several media to communicate with audiences. every message should provide relevant content so recipients are encouraged to read the next message. e-mail marketing creates unique advantages through personalized, targeted, interest-specific messages to a large number of customers and prospects.

Think Like a Squirrel

many books are devoted to the topic of turning established habits and thought patterns upside down to solve a problem or move an organization forward in a changing environment. two popular titles are sacred cows make the best burgers and who moved my cheese? their key point: approach problems with an open mind free of preconceptions and negative assumptions.

People

coming + going morellato & sector usa has appointed franco campesato, formerly managing director for north and south america for the binda group, as ceo. todd tieche also joined the company as national sales director. he was previously with the richemont group. charles & colvard, the sole manufacturer of moissanite, appointed dr.

M & M

n ot those colorful candy treats, but two other enticements that can please us, provided we do not overindulge. i refer to margin and memo. i capitalize these two words because of the frequency with which i heard them at the jck show in las vegas, and otherwise in the press. this month, i offer some thoughts about margins, next month about memo.

Trouble in River City

with all the trouble the industry has endured this year, the music man song title came to mind when i read about jewelers of america’s decision to “redefine its relationship with state and regional affiliate associations.” according to the press release issued by ja, “its board of directors determined that its business model was not sustainable to cover its operating expenses.

Raff Shakes ‘Em Up at Helzberg

beryl raff’s taking over as helzberg diamonds chief executive officer has led to a shake-up on the merchandising team. four or so key merchandisers have either retired or left, including people long associated with the chain like john doherty and oliver keene. this has led observers to wonder where the company is headed.

Store Puts Diamonds on the Diamond

steed jewelers, in vestavia hills, ala., has come up with a way to enliven the sporting events at local samford university—and promote its store besides. at a recent baseball game, steed jewelers held its second-ever “diamond dig” at the small baptist college. it hid a diamond cross, worth about $750, on the field the night before.

Tips to Thrive

words have meaning. choosing the wrong word in the midst of a sales presentation could not only cost a sale but also turn a customer off from your store for good. jewelers of america’s resident education and management expert david peters offers his take on some key words and phrases to avoid:

Holiday Events Connect With Customers

christmas cheerleading. three years ago fruchtman marketing approached steve levinson, owner of monmouth jewelers, newport, ky., to help beef up his seasonal men’s night. the most inspired innovation was hiring members of the cincinnati bengals’ cheerleading squad to augment the sales staff. the store, in the cincinnati area, sent more than 2,000 direct mailers inviting men to the “ben-g…

Twitter Gems: Six Tips to Get Started on Twitter

twitter is a “micro-blogging” and social networking service that allows you to send short messages (called “tweets”) to people who have signed up to receive them (your “followers”). the messages, limited to 140 characters, also appear on your profile page on the twitter web site.

Gem Pricing Report

consumers remain cautious on rising credit cardrates and shrinking credit lines. lack of consumer credit is no longer an issue only for higher-risk applicants and remainsa significant obstacle to recovery. but retailers report that engagement and anniversary gift giving remains active. price points, however, are considerably lower than in years past.

Jeweler Pleads Guilty to Not Following 8300 Rules

gary yee, 33, of golden sun jewelry in west bloomfield, mich., pled guilty recently to one count of money laundering after allegedly failing to file form 8300, mandated by the irs for cash purchases over $10,000. a statement from the u.s. attorney’s office claims that, in the early months of 2008, two federal agents posing as marijuana dealers made separate purchases of a $32,000 watch and a $…

Did Memo Cause Recent Bankruptcies?

earlier this year, a spate of retailers went chapter 11. now, it appears to be the manufacturers’ turn. in the aftermath of the jck show, two noted designers (henry dunay designs and michael beaudry), one noted jewelry manufacturer (speidel), and one noted retailer/designer (david webb) all filed chapter 11.

New Federal Lead Law Now in Effect

it is now illegal for children’s products, including jewelry, to contain more than 600 parts per million (ppm) lead. in august, this limit will drop to 300 ppm. it will be reduced again, in august 2011, to the lowest level that is technologically feasible. this recent federal legislation applies to all products, even those already in inventory as of the effective date of the law, feb.

Most Helpful Advice

sales and marketing the 25 greatest sales tips ever, david richardson, richardson resource group romance more sales, becka johnson kibby, training manager, robbins brothers harvesting from the entire family tree: a fresh look at generational marketing, nick failla, premier consulting innovations magic numbers: the importance of price point selling and buying, shane decker, president, ex-sell-en…