2011 winner Laura Gravestock gives some tips for gaining support.
By Laura Gravestock
Winning the Professional Jeweller Treasure competition for the 2011 show has genuinely been a huge boost for my business.
After showing at Treasure in June, I acquired new stockists and sold to a whole range of new customers. The press surrounding the competition meant that my brand has been seen by a much wider audience, which helped when I exhibited at IJL and my jewellery is now being stocked throughout the country.
Winning the competition was important for me, so I pulled out all the stops. Firstly, I asked my friends and family to vote for me. As the word spread, everyone asked friends of friends, co-workers and members of their family to vote too, and so the votes steadily grew.
Then I contacted my customers, asking for their support and they duly voted. As an avid user of Twitter, I took advantage of its viral nature and Tweeted my followers with the link to vote and the chance to win one of my Promise pendants in return.
Having been lucky enough to meet a few celebrities who love my jewellery, I also called on them for help, and they were happy to Tweet about the competition in order to drum up support amongst their followers.
All in all, I put in this level of effort because I knew that exhibiting at Treasure would be about so much more than just selling my jewellery – it would be a way of getting my brand seen, building on an already loyal customer base, and showing that I am truly passionate about what I do.