September 12, 2012
Jeweler Tiffany & Co. is looking to increase traffic to its new store in Manhattan’s SoHo district through a targeted mail campaign with its newest catalog and personalized letter.
Serving as both an acquisition and retention tool, Tiffany is saying hello to new customers and reminding old ones to come check out the new property. Luxury brands should continue to employ a direct mail strategy since it provides an old-world, tactile feel that affluent consumers appreciate.
“Direct mail is used as an acquisition and retention effort, and my guess is that Tiffany is using a little bit of both,” said Darren Floyd, cofounder of luxury marketing consultancy Fondue Mix, New York. “Direct mail still has an old-school element to it and people appreciate that.
“This just reinforces the idea that Tiffany is a luxury brand,” he said. “Direct mail is not dead.”
Mr. Floyd is not affiliated with Tiffany, but agreed to comment as an industry expert.
Tiffany declined comment for this article.
New crown jewel
The new catalog is the Inspiration and Style guide. It is a combination of ads from the brand and product information.
The book contains statement designs, colored diamonds, distinctive brand pieces, eyewear, layering jewelry and personalized pieces.
The back of the catalog features wedding jewelry and engagement rings.
Interspersed throughout the products include ads depicting different Tiffany customers including friends, parents and couples. They are going to a variety of events and wearing different outfits, likely to express the range of Tiffany products.
Mailed with the book is a letter from Michelle Butler, the directer of the new SoHo store. Ms. Butler explains the book and invites customers to the new store.
Tiffany originally debuted the store by allowing artists to create images of what they believe true love to be on the hoarding that surrounded the storefront.
Throughout the summer, the artists added to the hoarding to create murals inspired by True Love. Tiffany is likely tapping into the character of the SoHo neighborhood and the general brand image for this display (see story).
Mail order pride
Although not many luxury brands use direct mail, some high-end jewelry marketers are using personalized and targeted campaigns to hook customers.
For example, Cartier made use of old-world marketing by pushing its spring collection via a catalog with a personalized and signed letter.
The French jeweler highlighted its best pieces with one of the most traditional marketing channels for luxury marketers. To add depth to the experience, the brand included a personalized letter to recipients that invited them in-store (see story).
Also, New York-based retailer Bergdorf Goodman continued its reign in direct mail with a 32-page jewelry book that presented pieces from new designer collections.
The spring 2012 jewelry book showed pieces by Wilfredo Rosado, Sylva & Cie., Cindy Chao, Martin Katz and others with many items taking on a dark, edgy feel. Bergdorf presented lesser-known designers in this book, which could be a move to position itself as a trendsetter in the jewelry industry (see story).
“Generally, jewelry products are what we would call a big-ticket purchase,” said Paula Rosenblum, managing partner at RSR, Miami. “Those purchases are rarely impulse buys.
“Giving the shopper an opportunity to browse the catalog and get familiar with the products in advance helps in the decision-making process,” she said.
Rachel Lamb, associate reporter on Luxury Daily, New York