For some jewellery companies, having an active and effective Instagram account is more important than a website.
While having an e-store is of course valuable to any business, for small independent brands and retailers which do not have the infrastructure to keep up with e-commerce demands, it may be best to focus on the picture-based social media platform instead.
During a roundtable with digital-savvy individuals from the UK jewellery industry, founder of Lily Flo Jewellery, Diana Sherling, shared how valuable Instagram has been for the growth of her business.
“Instagram has actually helped me make my business, because I can curate how my business evolves faster on Instagram. So I want to be very fashion-led, and that helps me evolve more than my website. I can also test things on Instagram and see if they are resonating.”
“For me, Instagram has been the most incredible learning journey out of everything,” Sherling says of her digital jewellery journey so far. “Not only from the content that I am curating and putting on there, but also the networking, which is possible partly through hashtags and partly through the imagery. My bloggers and influencers have come to me from seeing my images on Instagram, and I have had a lot of new stockists see me through honing out hashtags, so that hashtag has a journey that then massively helps define my brand.”
Professional Jeweller editor Stacey Hailes asked the roundtable attendees, which included Sherling and Glitzbox founder, Tamsin Ivy, Banneya London co-founder, Nimesh Thakrar, and Facets PR digital communications manager, Rose Swingle, whether they would say social media can be even more important than a website? To which all responded yes.
“Yes, because you can have an ecommerce website, but equally someone might leave a message in an Instagram post saying ‘where do I get this?’, then you get that direct contact. They aren’t going to just go on your website,” shares Rose Swingler of Facets PR.
“It’s also automatic feedback,” adds Tamsin Ivy of Glitzbox. “People will comment if they love pieces, they will tag images of other people wearing them, and it makes it feel like a real brand, because anyone can put up a website, but it doesn’t necessarily show that there’s quality or that you are guaranteed, if you are buying from a small, independent brand that you have never heard from, then you want that back up of some kind of social platform.”
Nimesh Thakrar of Banneya London also warns of how Instagram might evolve in the future.
Thakrar says: “The other thing to watch out for in the near future is the changes that Instagram will make to their shoppable features, and I think everyone is waiting for it. They have started doing it with some brands in the States and I think they will broaden it out.”
Ultimately it boils down to the fact that every business is different, and what works for one company may not work for another, but the most important thing to do when it comes to having an online presence is to be quality on every platform you are on.
Whether you are across every channels or just a select through, each and every one needs to be strong and active. Don’t set up an account and leave it with hardly any posts and interaction, or equally don’t set up a website that does not reflect your company and story.
Whatever and however many platforms you are on be your best in those arenas. And also, do not be afraid to ask for help!