She Buys Her Own Diamonds: Connecting With the Self-Purchasing Customer

Recently, I was talking with one of the jewelry retailers that we work with about their annual sales event. They sold several big-ticket items during the event, but one in particular really stood out to them: a woman who came in and purchased a gorgeous three-diamond engagement ring.

Sure that there was a story behind the purchase, the retailers inquired, and found out that the woman was in a long-term romantic relationship. However, despite a decade plus together, there was no ring forthcoming. This woman really wanted one, so she took the initiative, and bought herself her own diamonds.

This story is indicative of a larger societal trend. Once upon a time, the vast majority of fine jewelry purchases were made by men for women. There was often some significant hinting or guidance from the woman involved, but the man was the primary decision maker. Those days are gone. In a recent JCK survey, 70% of jewelry shoppers report buying jewelry for themselves; 81 % of those respondents are women.

This begs the question: what are you doing to connect with the self-purchasing customer? It’s a good idea to look at your content mix. If the majority of the messaging focuses on bridal or romantic relationships, the self-purchasing customer may feel you have nothing to offer them. That might not be an accurate assessment, but if your customer can’t see themselves in your marketing, they’re not going to come into the store to investigate further. Look at your inventory mix. What percentage of your merchandise is aimed at the self-purchaser? Your marketing mix should be representative of these numbers.