Jacobs the Jewellers have won countless awards in recent years, continuing to prove themselves as a force to be reckoned with in the world of independent jewellers. Just some of their accolades include being voted 2018’s Retailer of the Year at the Reading Retail Awards, being listed in the UK’s top 50 Inspiring Independent Retailer of Jewellery awards from 2012-2017 inclusive, and most recently, being given the ‘Best Retail Customer Event of the Year’ award by the UK Jewellery Awards 2019.
Modern Retail spoke with the independent jeweller about the ways in which other retailers can benefit from entering awards.
MR: How effective have awards been for you?
AJ: Awards are always fun, exciting and a nice pat on the back but we started doing them to raise our profile and let people in the area know we have good principles and are trustworthy.
It’s great to let people know they are buying with confidence from a business with strong foundations, so we promote updates about awards when we send out postal promotional materials and newsletters online. People like to feel they are engaging with a successful business and it helps to raise your profile in the industry.
Another benefit of entering has been that it attracts talent to work with us. In job interviews, people know what we do and how we pride ourselves on our reputation. This is how we get good, bright people instore to look after our customers.
MR: Do you have a strategy when entering awards?
AJ: We usually enter ones which are either directly within our postcode or area where our customers are, and then for national awards, we stick to sector-based ones. By doing this, we make sure the awards are relevant to our customers.
MR: What advice would you give to a retailer looking to enter awards for the first time?
AJ: Always aim to be on a shortlist. If you make it onto a shortlist, that’s incredible and is something to promote and celebrate. If you win, it’s an added benefit.
You should also choose your categories carefully. Take time outside the shop to reflect, take stock of what you’ve achieved and look at what you’ve managed to do. If you can, taking time away from your business will help to clear your head and create the best application.
In terms of writing, don’t rush to complete your entry just before the deadline. Write your entry and leave it a week before coming back to it. Make sentences more punchy and clear, and sometimes when it comes to word count, less is more. I’ve also involved friends to get their thoughts and make it more powerful.