Laurence Coste opened her first boutique on Walton Street in 2006, and it soon became a popular Chelsea destination thanks to its magnificent abundance of colourful and unique earrings.
The brand went on to grow organically for over a decade, and then last year decided to branch out and open another store in Sloane Street.
Now, the Parisian jewellery designer’s two boutiques have become a ‘must-visit’ for stylish women and celebrities around the globe.
Much of the brand’s success is down to becoming experts in earrings, with all shop floor staff trained to pick up the perfect piece for each individual client.
For example, the Laurence Coste says skin tone and hair colour determines which metal looks best, while eye colour influences what stones are best. When it comes to shapes and sizes, Coste says oval faces suit long earrings that get wider as they get longer, and women with long and thin faces should be wearing earrings that widen their face and bring out their eyes.
The key for Laurence Coste is in the detail — the detail of the customer service and the final products. Here, the eponymous brand founder shares a slice of what attributes to the company’s success — the art of selling earrings….
Words by Laurence Coste
Women don’t buy jewellery out of need, they buy it because they want it; it’s an emotional purchasing decision sparked by the desire to own and treasure something timeless and beautiful. Elizabeth Taylor once said: ‘I’ve never thought of my jewellery as trophies. I’m here to take care of it and to love it, for we are only temporary custodians of beauty.’ Consequently, when selling jewellery, it’s all about establishing a connection between the customer and the piece that brings them confidence and excitement.
At Laurence Coste we have realised that the art of selling jewellery is all about establishing and developing customer relationships by interacting with everyone that walks into the boutiques; transmitting the magic and excitement of each piece; and building an emotional bridge between the client and the jewellery.
Nowadays, most women that buy a piece of jewellery for themselves want to purchase something that reflects their personality and enhances their unique style. It’s no secret that in 2018, consumers are demanding high levels of personalisation and recognition. Greeting a client by name when they walk through the front door creates an ambience of intimacy.
At Laurence Coste, we help women reinvent themselves according to the latest fashion trends that are far more contemporary than the traditional fine jewellery based on diamonds and pearls.
We have rooted and long-standing relationships with most of our returning customers, and take the time to get to know their tastes and preferences in order to make customised suggestions when advising them.
If the customer is new to the brand, we make sure that we deliver an immersive experience by getting them involved and invested in the design of the pieces, the materials used in each product, and the inspiration behind the creations.
Building up excitement and expectation are key to closing a sale. By spending a significant amount of time advising clients on the colours and shapes that will best accentuate their features and colourings and ensuring that the pieces they take home are tailored to surpass their expectations, we ensure that our clients feel excited to wear our pieces and want to wear them frequently. The closer someone is certain that an accessory compliments their appearance, the more likely they are to wear the piece more often. Our extensive and speedy bespoke services and our handheld customer service approach also means that clients are able to design their ideal pair of earrings in-store and walk out of our boutiques with a unique piece, which is beautifully packaged.
Thanks to our close proximity to our customer’s needs, we have developed a repair service in our London workshop that we are extremely proud of. We offer our clients an unlimited warranty on the pieces they buy from us and accept items in for repair years after they have been bought. Our repair services also extend to redesigning and reinventing old pieces and using them to create something completely new.
Last but not least, creating that emotional halo around the piece of jewellery is all about the storytelling around it. From the stones used in a pair of earrings and their characteristic qualities and mythical properties, to sharing information regarding the designer’s inspirations for certain pieces, weaving a web of anecdotes around a piece plays an essential role in the art of selling jewellery. After all, no design is created randomly and sharing a designer’s inspiration makes them more relatable and accessible.