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Stand out from the crowd

By Patti Moloney and Jeffrey Ross

Photo ©
Photo ©

Retail jewellers know providing clientele with an enjoyable, unique experience drives sales and creates repeat customers. So why, then, do we continue touting decades-old promises of excellent quality, exceptional service, friendly staff, and great selection? Translation: boring.

We fall back on this standard phrasing time and again, yet it has been so overused, it does nothing to capture the customer’s attention. To stand out from the crowd, retail jewellers must place a renewed focus on creative packaging, eye-catching displays, and compelling decor that stops customers in their tracks and draws them into the store.

In today’s changing retail environment, the winners are those who provide an experience—one that either can’t be achieved through online shopping or is so valued by customers, they return and refer others. There has never been a better time to let your brand’s personality stand out from the crowd, and we have some great tips on how to do just that.

Unpacking an experience
Let’s start with creative packaging. Unboxing has become an Internet phenomenon. The unpacking of products captured on video and shared across social media platforms may sound niche, but it’s widely popular, captivating billions of viewers through millions of videos on YouTube and Instagram.

It is about much more than just a box. Jewellers can glean inspiration from this trendy activity to evaluate what kind of experience their packaging evokes. Branded packaging experiences provide additional value to customers as well as the business by being memorable and shareable. An engaging unboxing experience will inspire customers to share or talk about it on social media, building brand awareness, creating customer loyalty, and generating social recommendations. Plus, people will pay more for it.

Apple has been using this to its advantage for some time. The company has an ‘unboxing room’ where designers experiment with packaging, seeking the combination that evokes the perfect emotional response.

Since jewellery is most often an emotional purchase, creating an unforgettable unboxing will further enhance the customer’s overall experience. People remember how they felt during an event far more than the event itself.

Unique packaging can help draw customers in and catch their interest. For instance, Vancouver's hk+np studio includes a drawing of each piece on vellum paper within a handmade paper box, along with details on the piece's 'story.' Photos courtesy hk+np studio
Unique packaging can help draw customers in and catch their interest. For instance, Vancouver’s hk+np studio includes a drawing of each piece on vellum paper within a handmade paper box, along with details on the piece’s ‘story.’
Photos courtesy hk+np studio

Pandora, Gucci, and Cartier are some of the heavy hitters who have invested in compelling packaging. The power of this is illustrated by Tiffany & Co. with its iconic blue box. Tiffany’s packaging has become so ingrained in today’s culture, people actually buy empty and used Tiffany boxes on Kijiji.

To make your business’s packaging pop, you need to add your own brand flair to the unboxing experience. This is where your creativity can reign. Think of a unique offering, like attractive printed cards with witty sayings or slogans, inspirational quotes, or thought-provoking questions. A great tip to keep in mind: quality card stock or vellum, cut into diamond shapes, will convey luxury.

Vancouver-based hk+np studio honours co-owner Hiroko Kobayashi’s Japanese roots by placing every order in a handmade paper jewellery box.

“Inside each box, we include a vellum sheet with a drawing of the jewellery piece and the story behind it,” says co-owner Neil Prakash. “Our brand blends architecture and jewellery. Since vellum is paper typically used in architecture, it nicely ties these aspects of our brand together.”

This thoughtful packaging adds meaningful originality that resonates with customers and speaks to the store’s distinct character.

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