Bringing the Emotion Back

March 13th, 2015 published in “The JA Report”

I think this is a great article that was published in the jewelry industry online magazine, The JS Report, about changing trends in bridal.

The State of Bridal Jewelry Today

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How do you reach the millennial bridal customer? That was the question posed to jewelry industry bridal experts during a panel at Women’s Jewelry Association’s In The Know Conference on March 10. The experts included: Phyllis Bergman of Mercury Ring; Miriam Gumuchian, of Gumuchian; Jenny Luker, Platinum Guild International; Amanda Elser, editor at The Knot.

“The concern that I’m hearing all over the industry is that we’ve taken the emotion out of bridal and replaced it with numbers and made it a commodity. We are at a critical time in that we have to bring back the emotion.”

There Is No Denying Social
Millennials shop for bridal on a different way, on social and sharing/hinting to their partners. The consensus for the entryway to bridal jewelry is Pinterest. Elser describes it as “sneaky” — with leaving screenshots, pinning photos, tagging things on Instagram so their friends and partners can see. She likened it to the modern version of folding in corners of magazine ads and photos for boyfriends to see.

Gumuchian agreed: “The millennial doesn’t give a s*** about ads,” she said. “It is more important to see what the acting world, singing world — celebrity is wearing.”

Luker noted that PGI is focusing on experiential websites and media, because younger consumers want to experience a product and the feeling behind it.

The way jewelers can get in on the new media platform to grab younger customer attention include:

  • posting on social media, like Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest
  • featuring a CRM program to followup with customers who come into the store to browse and may not purchase in that visit
  • following trends and featuring “non-traditional” bridal
Men Still Shop In Store
The retail store still plays a very important role. As Bergman explained, the retail store provides affirmation that the customer is selecting the right ring and answers their questions. While the bride investigates and creates wishlists online, “the groom goes into the store” said Elser.What Sells & What Is Trending

  • Yellow and gold metal are coming back, but consumers always go back to classic according to the panelists. Classic styles are still what sells, both Bergman and Elser agreed. But there is a need to sell unique designs within the classic settings.
  • An example of trends within the classic category is stacking wedding rings or mixing and matching metal tones — yellow and white — for the engagement and band.
  • Baguette cuts
  • Vintage rings are a trend The Knot is seeing. “Because there is meaning,” explained Elser. “[Couples] love that story behind the ring and that talking point.”
  • Personalization is also very important to younger customers.
  • For second marriages and beyond, the consensus was that rings are bigger and more ornate or intricate designs.
  • When asked about synthetic diamonds, Bergman spoke about how it is a great concern to sellers of natural diamonds. She emphasized that it is going to help bring back the emphasis on the story and the precious origin of natural diamonds.
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