For Your Staff
Emphasize the Attributes
Use salesmanship when you sell a diamond; don't be just a clerk
Salesmanship is the ability to create a sale from scratch. "Otherwise,
we're clerks customers tell us what they want and we show it and sell
it. That's filling an order," according to Shane Decker, a sales trainer
who specializes in diamond-selling techniques.
Decker, speaking at the recent Independent Jewelers Organization seminar/buying
show in Palm Springs, CA, advocates taking advantage of the attributes offered
by a diamond:
- The cut.
- The endurance factor.
- The antiquity value.
- The investment value.
"The first thing you should do is talk about rarity," he says.
"It takes 500,000 pounds of earth mined to find a single 1-ct. diamond."
Next comes cut. "It takes eight or nine years to study to become
a neurosurgeon, but it takes 10 years of apprenticeship to become a diamond
cutter," he says. "As much as 60% of the cost of a diamond is
in the cut."
Endurance is important also. "You can't pass on clothes or a car
or a home to your family, but you can pass a diamond from generation to
generation," he says. "If you do give them a car or a home, you're
also giving them the cost of upkeep. Emphasize you can use a diamond every
day and it will always look exactly the way it was when you bought it."
An emphasis on the antiquity value also helps to make a sale. "The
oldest diamond has been carbon-dated at 3.4 million years," he says.
"That means you have the oldest known substance sitting right there
in your showcase and look how beautiful it is. Based on this, you can't
even begin to estimate the antiquity value of a diamond."
While many people caution against selling a diamond based on its investment
value, it's OK with Decker, but emphasize a different type of investment.
"It's the highest compliment you can pay, to make an investment in
memory, an investment in commitment," he says. "The average car
costs $30,000, you drive it 11/2 hours a day and it lasts five years. But
the average diamond is worn for 40 years, 24 hours a day."
He recommends using closing techniques all the way through the presentation.
"If you wait to the end to make your close, you get only one shot,
so use a close a minute," he says. Decker also urges diamond sales
associates to wear a diamond. "That's a reassurance close. When [customers]
don't see jewelry on your hand, they don't have reassurance."
Go for diamond add-ons, he adds. "When you write out the sales slip,
write the name and address on it," he says. "Then write the product
description and the amount, but don't draw a line under it or add the sales
tax or total. The customer is already in a buying mood, so now go for diamond
earrings or a pendant." Two hints: the add on should be in the same
family (in this case, diamonds) and should be about half the amount of the
by Jack Heeger
Copyright © 1998 by Bond Communications.