Posted on | June 8, 2010 | 3 Comments
I am on the plane reflecting on my JCK Las Vegas jewelry show experience this year. I’ve been attending this show for at least ten years. My first trip out to Vegas was as a pawnbroker, delving into the new and even elitist world of fine jewelry. No one was very interested in talking to me since I wasn’t a fancy retailer – at least that’s the impression that I got.
My wife and I would go to do some buying, but mainly to vacation, eat good food, gamble, sit at the pool and just have fun. I never went (or was invited to) any industry events. In fact, I don’t even think I knew or cared that they were going on.
The show has changed for a me for a couple reasons. One reason is the economy. The exhibitors (jewelry brands, wholesalers, etc) got knocked off their high horse and are finally starting to realize that they should be thankful for all of their customers, and not have the attitude that they’re doing us a favor by selling to us.
The show has also changed for me as my business progressed and I started building our store brand and, most recently, my personal brand. Last year was my first year speaking about Social Media. We spoke to a pretty empty room. This year, we spoke to a jam packed room with a lively audience participation. I also had the opportunity to speak/present at the exclusive high end Couture Show at The Wynn. It was weird for me to be there, but I actually enjoyed that experience and felt like the audience responded to our talk.
These talks provided me with the opportunity to share our new brand, The Social Jeweler. We soft launched it last week, and the response was great. Right now, it’s about creating custom facebook pages for jewelers and jewelry brands.
As far as social events, we had a great time. There was a great party Friday night at Mandalay Bay, where the show is next year, and of course our annual Face-to-Face party at TAO Beach. Both very fun, although I will say that the management at TAO is terrible. Wouldn’t let some of my guests in because of dress code stuff (come on, it’s Vegas and 107 degrees out). Also were very unaccommodating to me. The JCK people took the lead on this party so I was just along for the ride, and I should have known about the TAO people because they were the same way last year. Overall, all who attended had fun, however, looking back, it wasn’t a great move to have the party on a Saturday night at the most popular club on earth. But..you live and learn, so next year we’ll have it at a more intimate place that wants the business.
Sleep, relaxation? No way. It was just work and fun and then up for work again. Overall it was a great show and although I didn’t buy much, I did sell a lot and meet some great people.
Here are the latest write ups about my talks:
I also shoot a very cool video with Engagement101 magazine that should be up soon.
Here’s the write up on that one:
See ya next year Vegas!