That’s always a big question with jewelers. Let me start by asking you this; What can I say or offer to you to get you to buy a new set of tires today? If you need tires right now, all I have to do is make you a fair offer and you’ll probably bite. However, if you do not need tires right now, I’d practically have to GIVE them to you, wouldn’t I?
It’s the same way with jewelers. You have to pretty much give the farm away in order to create a jewelry-buying event in customer’s lives. And then you have to ask, what’s the melt price? Now you’re probably much further ahead boxing up that old jewelry and sending it off to the refiner rather than putting out the cost of advertising for a so-so sales event.
The reality is this. Trying to create a jewelry-buying event in people’s lives is difficult and expensive. Wouldn’t you rather just wonderfully market yourself to everyone all the time so that when THEY are ready to buy, they think of you and come in? Sounds like smarter and cheaper marketing to me.
Now, if you HAVE TO have an event or sale, the keys to success are infrequent (once a year or less), and extraordinary. What I mean here is to have an event that customers wouldn’t expect from you. Say you’re a high-end jeweler and you’re having a close-out sale. Get that jewelry in the cheapest boxes you can with big, gaudy price tags on them. Make it look like a rummage sale. Cover your windows with paper and big colorful signs. It will create a “bottom feeder” excitement AND you’ll get rid of a lot of jewelry.
Finally, if you’re going to have a non-sale event such as a trunk show or anniversary party, make it big and fabulous. Have the party for party’s sake. Anything less will look contrived and customers will smell it 5 miles away. Don’t bring in the cheese and cracker platter from the local discount shopping club. Bring in the good stuff that local people made. And create goody bags with really nice items in them, not $10 off a massage or manicure coupons. The more you show how much you care with your party, the bigger and bigger your consecutive events will be.