Professional Jeweler Archive: Developing a Successful Watch Event

April 2001


Developing a Successful Watch Event

Retailers can create special happenings with the right planning and inventory

Watch shows have become a big part of the special events calendar for many fine independent and chain jewelers. They’re a great way to showcase your timepieces to a wide audience and draw traffic to your store.

But you don’t just say “Hey, let’s put on a show!” like they did in the old Andy Hardy movies. A successful watch event takes planning, coordination and development.

Plan Way Ahead

The jewelry events calendar is getting more and more cluttered. Your watch sales representatives have commitments with other retailers throughout the year.

In the spring, for example, representatives may have a show each weekend for two months or more. Check how and when you can fit your event in the schedule and who from the brands you showcase will be able to attend. You may have to delay your show a season or even a year to present it properly with good representation.

Develop a Concept

Have a concept, theme or some kind of hook. It’s most important that customers, current and prospective, be intrigued enough to show up. In other words, try to give them something more than another cocktail party loosely disguised as a sales event.

Spring is a great time to debut a new watch line or new products within your line. A fall event prepares customers for the upcoming holiday season and is a good time to show the latest models.

You can build a show around a new technological advance, a jeweled collection, a celebrity tie-in or a local special event. In Indianapolis, we’ve successfully tied-in with the 500 Mile and United States Grand Prix auto races.

Be Sure to Deliver

If you promise to unveil new watches, be certain they will be in your store for the show. Nothing would be more disconcerting to consumers than to fail on this promise.

A safer approach is to talk to each of the sales representatives you’ve scheduled for the event. Get rare, historic or other special examples from the brand’s collection for your event.

Be sure the standard inventory for all your brands is strong. While an event may stir interest in a particular brand, customers may find another brand that interests them once they’re in the store. Be sure you’re able to sell them what they’re looking for.

Next Month: Staging the Show

– By Paul White, Watch Division director, Reis-Nichols Jewelers, Indianapolis, IN

Copyright © 2001 by Bond Communications