Precious Metals & Bench: News
Profiles in Partnering
Retailers should look for certain hallmarks in a manufacturing
Manufacturers can mean different things when they say they
offer partnerships with jewelers. For Bill Jobbins, vice president
of Donald Bruce & Co.'s Skalet Gold division, it means "doing
whatever is necessary so the retailer can maximize profit with
a minimum investment." Skalet offers advice and the benefit
of its experience and technology in several key areas.
"This is a fashion trend business," says Jobbins.
A jeweler has to know what's hot at the moment and stay ahead
of the fashion curve. Part of a good manufacturer's sales representative's
job is to keep the retailer apprised of what is likely to increase
in demand in the near future. It's equally important to make
note of what your customers buy. Restocking inventory and keeping
track of the items that sell is another aspect of value added
In Store Support
Sales of even the hottest styles can be increased with effective
organization and presentation. "A jeweler is likely to see
the same customer many times over the course of a year,"
says Jobbins. "It's crucial to keep displays well stocked,
but also looking fresh and new." You can achieve this by
simply rotating where items are displayed. Skalet's trained representatives
give advice on display and stock rotation. Jobbins says his customers
also use Skalet's counter cards and window display material.
Advertising assistance is another way Skalet helps retail jewelers
Computers have streamlined and revolutionized the way gold jewelry
can be designed, manufactured, marketed and sold. Computers also
make it possible to meet Skalet's goal of shipping major orders
in three to four weeks and special orders in two to three days,
Daniel Solomon, son of Donald Bruce President Gary Solomon, sees
the importance of the Internet to the future of manufacturer retailer
partnerships. Focusing on the interplay between the Internet
and interactive CD ROMs, his goal is to create, maintain
and administer interactive Web sites for Donald Bruce companies
that retailers can access for better
communication and service.
He points out how rapidly the Internet is developing in terms
of speed and capability. Soon, higher speed Internet connections
will allow vastly more creativity and flexibility in what manufacturers
can do to serve retailers. "A fluid exchange of data, collaboration
on design and use of animation are only some of the ways Internet
technology can be used to enhance the supplier retailer
customer relationship," says Solomon. "This is an industry
in which the retailer has the right to expect added value. I
am looking for ways to combine the two powerful tools
the Internet and multimedia in interactive Web site design."
- Skalet Gold, Chicago, IL; (800) 621 6017.
by William H. Donahue Jr.
||Creating partnerships with its retailer customers
lies at the heart of Skalet Gold's success.
Copyright © 1999 by Bond Communications.