I’m not sure if you follow watches, but I do. I’m a little obsessed with them. Boutique watch companies are failing. It’s not failing because of what you may think, because people WILL pay for a hand-made watch. They are failing because the big box companies have figured out how to make the “exquisite” time pieces. That or they have poached them. I’ve also heard that many of the small shops have gotten purchased by your Swatches and Rolex’s. It’s kind of saddening to me. I love the boutiques. Not the cost though. It’s a double-edged sword I think. Because I’m not spending 1,000 on a watch. (you should never spend more than 200 on a watch. I’ll explain later.) you can if you want. Well since the complicated movements are being easily manufactured, it presents an opportunity for the boutique shops to innovate.
1) Check out new technologies. Or find new ways to use the existing stuff. I had a conversation with a tech expert, and he said most technology just gets used in novel ways. There hasn’t been anything “new” in 10 years.
2) Find new ways to keep your existing customers and attract new ones. Engage with them more, offer better. Isomer service than the big boxers, etc. remember social media is your friend. If you need help, email me firstname.lastname@example.org.
3) Build better relationships. Seriously. Customer Service is key. Go read the book by Zappos CEO. He has some good tips. (get the book).
Some Swiss ones are rebounding though. Maybe you should pull ideas from here.
That’s all. I’ll quit this rant. At least for now. I wonder what my friends at Global Watch Brokers think?
Far From Idle