I consider myself to be a renaissance man. I am fluent in three languages, took a ton of extra courses in mathematics and engineering in college, and enjoy a little Shakespeare every now and then.
So, in the spirit of being well-rounded and relatable, I look for opportunities to learn every day. It’s funny how once you actively seek lessons, new information jumps out at you.
On my latest trip to the mall (forced by my girlfriend) my head was on a swivel. So much had changed in just a few short months; especially in regards to the vendors in the middle of the mall’s sweeping hallways.
Pretzel stands had been replaced by drone stores, many of the clothing boutiques looked as if they were going out of business (a serious trend in the marketplace).
But, among all of the change, there were a few constants. Sure, the movie theater was packed and the Apple store had a line that wrapped around the corner. But I focused on digging beneath the surface. I noticed how the jewelry stores were all relatively similar to what I had remembered from a few months back. In fact, I don’t think a single jeweler in our local mall had gone out of business in recent memory.
In a place of constant change and slumping sales, what allowed the jewelers to stand on their own?
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1. Jewelers Use Marketing to Attach Their Product to an Emotional Event
Jewelry is something that, at least in my experience, is purchased for someone to celebrate an exciting time in their life, or to express the deep love held for the recipient. Unlike clothing, jewelry is sentimental and holds deep meaning for both the purchaser and the recipient.
For example, Jenny Present markets her line of customized jewelry heavily during the graduation season. As students prepare to leave school and embark on life’s journey into adulthood, her blog article outlines how her products can be used to commemorate the occasion: “…As she spreads her wings remind her that she can fly above the odds! The silver and gold feather charm necklace is very symbolic of new beginnings…”
The best marketers attach their product or service to both an emotional trigger and event in their customer’s life. The product takes on a sentimental value that encourages customers to purchase with less thought to cost.
Attaching the product/service you’re selling to an impactful event or period of time in the customer’s life is powerful. Jennifer Aaker, General Atlantic Professor of Marketing at Stanford, states in her research: “Because a person’s experience with a product tends to foster feelings of personal connection with it, referring to time typically leads to more favorable attitudes and to more purchases.”
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2. Jewelers Frame Their Product as an Investment
It’s difficult to turn on the television without seeing ads for selling or investing in gold and other precious metals. The lines between investment and consumption have been blurred in the jewelry industry. This is done on purpose. It’s the same reason classic car dealerships charge a massive premium for their vehicles. If you can sell the customer on the joy they get from a product now, and the potential for a long-term gain when the time comes to sell, the cost of the product becomes more palatable.
Frame your product within the context of an investment. The USP’s are great, but a real savvy marketer will understand that a customer can be more easily convinced to pull the trigger if there’s a potentially profitable exit strategy down the road.
3. Long-Term Relationship Awareness Builds Trust With Consumers
When a customer walks into your establishment, that customer has already built up an internal judgment of you and your company. Fair or not, the first impression is cemented in their mind. One of the few things that can alter that initial perception is actual interaction with the brand or product.
For marketers, creating a shortcut from impression to long-term trust has been the holy grail of marketing for some time. In the jewelry industry, a savvy jeweler will emphasize that they will be around to buy-back the jewelry that is being sold at a higher-than-market rate for used jewelry. This simple addition to the sales pitch cements in the mind of the customer that their company values a long-term relationship.
An explanation of how the buy-back program works in many jewelry locations can be found this article.
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Build trust with your customer quickly by emphasizing the long-term nature of your potential business relationship. A customer that knows you have their future interests in mind is more likely to trust you. With less than one percent of customers feeling that their needs are always exceeded in the marketplace, the opportunity is there to convert customers to your brand.