The PR Adviser: Saying Good Riddance to 2019

ColumnistsDec 17, 2019

The PR Adviser: Saying Good Riddance to 2019

Had a bad year? You’re not alone, writes our resident PR adviser, Lilian Raji, in her latest column.

Lilian Raji is a strategic communications and PR adviser who helps companies understand their marketing problems, then designs and executes strategies to solve them.
Happy holidays, dear readers!

We’re breaking from our usual Q&A format to dedicate 2019’s final column to those who’ve shared with me their business-crippling challenges of this year.

Those that know me well know I’m a 20-plus year student of astrology and will happily interpret your personal astrology chart, if you ask me nicely. 

No, I’m not talking about those silly horoscopes that give astrology a bad name. I mean a real, mathematics-driven chart, composed of numbers, formulas and calculations. 

While I don’t believe we’re governed by the stars, I do believe the stars can decipher the energy and environment around us. 

For instance, those born in the ‘70s and early ‘80s have been riddled with obstacles for the past two years because the astrological numerical values of that era conflict with the values of this era. (This also applies to some born outside these years based on the mathematics of their personal chart, but that’s a different discussion.) 

Anyway, the two astronomical figures representing the energies of chaos and discipline have been warring with each other, leaving us 1970s babies (with our conflicting numerical charts) to endure one disappointment after another. 

A battle between chaos and discipline only ends one of two ways: either by complete destruction, never to rise again, or by total transformation, bursting through ash and rubble like a phoenix. 

Me personally? I prefer the latter. 

This month’s column is for those who’d like to join me in rising from the ashes of the shellshock that was 2019 to transform your business as we leave this decade behind.

I’ve spoken with many business owners enduring this year’s chaos vs. discipline battle. 

Each company wanted discipline to maintain things, yet were being antagonized by chaos demanding change. 

I had only one recommendation—focus on your e-commerce strategy. 

This is true whether you’re a brand or retailer. Retailers especially have been hit by the online shopping phenomenon because they’ve ignored for too long the data that customers increasingly prefer shopping online. 

Consumers are spoiled by home delivery of everything. 

Why put on pants, drive through traffic and wade through a mall when anything can be delivered as you watch Netflix in your underwear?

Ignoring this has caught up to retailers, with this costly mistake affecting brands that once depended on these retailers for orders they can no longer place because store traffic is down. 

“But Lilian,” you’re thinking, “no one’s going buy expensive jewelry without touching it first!”

To this, I say malarkey! (Sorry, I’m utterly amused by Joe Biden’s campaign slogan.)

But back to the malarkey.

Having been that young, scrappy Tourneau salesperson in the early aughts who had a loyal client spend over $300,000 with me exclusively by phone, I can tell you firsthand this isn’t true.

If a customer is familiar with a brand because that brand has made itself and its stellar reputation consistently visible to the customer, that customer will happily drop $10,000 online because the brand has earned her or his trust.

I speak often to companies that’ve disregarded PR for years, then turn to me to produce a pair of ruby slippers that transport them back to a time of easily swiped AmExes and Visas and Mastercards, oh my!

The thing about Dorothy’s adventures in Oz, however, is that while she’d always possessed the power to go home, she had to follow the yellow brick road for miles before she learned this truth.

Ladies and gentlemen, that yellow brick road is the customer journey.

The PR Adviser is Glenda the Good Witch teaching you the value you already possess via the Emerald City of

In 2019’s final days, reflect on what you’ve accomplished, where you’ve failed and what obstacles derailed your best laid plans.

Now tell me: What are you willing to give up to transform your business?

Will you give up the belief that customers won’t buy from you online?  Will you stop ignoring the extensive data on consumer behavior? Are you ready for a complete transformation of how you’ve always done business, given how this year has shown you those ways no longer work?

Let’s talk briefly about the customer journey.

Simply put, the customer journey is the many touchpoints a customer has with your company before, during and after she or he makes a purchase.

How does a customer first learn about you? How does she feel upon this discovery? What entices her to want to learn more?

Where does she go for this information—your website, your store, social media? What does she do when she gets there? What do you want her to do when she gets there?

These are some of the questions that, answered correctly, help create trust between customers and your brand. Trust is the only thing required to get a customer to spend $40,000 online without thinking twice.

We spent much of this year on influencer marketing.

Next year, I’ll show you how it and other strategies play an important role in helping integrate an e-commerce website into the customer journey.

In the meantime, grab a free copy of my e-book, “Influencer Fraud: Weeding Out the Fakers, Liars and the Delusional.” The appendix includes the indispensable Influencer Marketing Toolkit, which you’ll need next year.

To those who’ve had a rough year, know that chaos can only disrupt something that wasn’t originally stable. Arise from the rubble and begin building a stronger foundation.

I’m here in 2020 to help you build something greater, whether through my answering your questions in this column or through a complimentary consulting call

Have a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanza, Happy Festivus or Happy Whatever You Celebrate! See you next year! 

Lilian Rajiis a strategic communications and PR adviser who helps companies understand their marketing problems, then designs and executes strategies to solve them.

The Latest

Graphic for My Next Question episode on lab-grown diamonds
Recorded WebinarsSep 29, 2023
The Lab-Grown Diamond Market: Where Are We Now?

Watch as Edahn Golan, Sherry Smith and Avi Levy join Michelle Graff to talk pricing and trends in this controversial corner of the market.

692-carat rough diamond from the Karowe Mine
SourcingSep 29, 2023
Lucara Severs Ties With HB Antwerp

The two companies initially partnered during the pandemic and had just signed a 10-year sales agreement in November 2022.

Sonya K. Taylor diamond tennis necklace with tourmaline drop
CollectionsSep 29, 2023
Piece of the Week: Sonya K’s Versatile Necklace

A classic diamond tennis necklace gets a whole lot cooler with a removable pendant.

Brought to you by
Top 5 Ways to Promote Safety and Security Awareness Among Your Staff

Awareness is essential to proactive protection. Learn how to promote and maintain safety and security awareness in your business.

Columbia Gem House Woz Cuts
EditorsSep 28, 2023
The Gemstone World Is In Its Unique Cut Era

Associate Editor Lauren McLemore recently spoke with Columbia Gem House’s Eric Braunwart about the uptick in non-traditional gemstone cuts.

Weekly QuizSep 29, 2023
This Week’s Quiz
Test your jewelry news knowledge with this short test.
Take the Quiz
Pre-Owned Luxury by Rocksbox logo
MajorsSep 28, 2023
Signet-Owned Rocksbox Now Sells Pre-Owned Fine Jewelry

“Pre-Owned Luxury by Rocksbox” offers secondhand jewelry from Kay, Zales, and Jared to members and non-members.

Gold Roman Bracelet from the British Museum
CrimeSep 28, 2023
Have You Seen Jewels Like These? The British Museum Wants to Know

The museum is asking for the public’s help in finding thousands of pieces of ancient gold jewelry and gemstones stolen from a storeroom.

Dialog Solutions
Brought to you by
A Conversation with Dialog Solutions

Do you always want the right diamonds at the right price in your store? Introducing Dialog, the world’s first diamond subscription service.

Pam Waclawski The Kingswood Company
MajorsSep 28, 2023
The Kingswood Co. Names New VP, Wins Award

The company was recognized for one of its private-label, consumer-focused jewelry care lines.

Chaumet diamond necklace, circa 1900
AuctionsSep 27, 2023
Antique Jewels Shine at Bonhams London

A rare Chaumet necklace and 20th-century sapphire ring sold for double their estimates.

Stock image of rough diamonds from De Beers
SourcingSep 27, 2023
India Calls for 2-Month Moratorium on Rough Diamond Imports

The plea comes against a backdrop of declining demand and falling prices.

Hands pushing a shopping cart
SurveysSep 27, 2023
Consumer Confidence Falls in September Amid Rising Recession Fears

Shoppers also expressed concern about rising prices, higher interest rates, and political uncertainty.

   Platinum Guild International logo
Events & AwardsSep 27, 2023
PGI to Dole Out $500K in Business Grant Program

Participants from the first round of grants saw up to a 900 percent increase in their platinum sales.

Citizen Tsuki-yomi A-T moon phase watch
WatchesSep 26, 2023
Citizen Launches the Tsuki-Yomi A-T Timepiece

According to the watchmaker, it features the first light-powered atomic timekeeping moon phase movement.

Sally Nelson Exclusively Diamonds
IndependentsSep 26, 2023
Sally Nelson, Founder of Exclusively Diamonds, Dies at 86

The former teacher, described as “a pioneer for women-owned businesses,” opened her own jewelry store in 1980.

Crescendo, a 147.96-carat golden citrine by John Dyer for Somewhere In The Rainbow
Events & AwardsSep 26, 2023
2023 Spectrum Awards Entry Deadline Extended

The contest is now open for submissions until Oct. 10.

Instore show logo
Events & AwardsSep 26, 2023
Instore Announces Dates for 2024 Show

The annual event will return to Rosemont, Illinois next August.

Gold holiday gift boxes
SurveysSep 26, 2023
Mastercard Makes Its 2023 Holiday Prediction

According to SpendingPulse, retail sales will increase in November and December but not necessarily for jewelers.

Stock image of hands in handcuffs
CrimeSep 25, 2023
Oregon Jeweler Accused of Selling Lab-Grown Diamonds as Natural

Police say Douglas Wayne Gamble also swapped natural diamonds for synthetic stones and failed to return customers’ repairs.

Neil Lane lab-grown diamond engagement rings for Kay Jewelers
CollectionsSep 25, 2023
Neil Lane’s Latest Collection Uses Lab-Grown Diamonds

The designer just launched a new bridal range at Kay Jewelers.

Yunjo Lee
MajorsSep 25, 2023
Hearts On Fire Taps Mejuri Exec as CCO

Yunjo Lee has also worked on collections for Tiffany & Co. with Paloma Picasso and Frank Gehry.

Steve Levine of Sylvie Jewelry
MajorsSep 25, 2023
Second Generation Takes On New Roles at Sylvie Jewelry

Steve Levine joins the family-owned company, while his brother Gary has a new position.

David Yurman Paris flagship
MajorsSep 22, 2023
David Yurman Alleges These Two Companies Copied Its Designs

The company has filed complaints against Royal Chain and Samuel B.

Yun Yun Sun toi et moi diamond Puzzle ring
TrendsSep 22, 2023
Piece of the Week: Yun Yun Sun’s ‘Puzzle’ Ring

The two-stone style benefits from two-toned metal.

Mineral display at HardRock Summit 2023
Events & AwardsSep 22, 2023
HardRock Summit To Relocate In 2024

The event is moving just outside of Denver.

Timex ReWound video screenshot
WatchesSep 21, 2023
Timex Wants Your Old Watch

The company just rolled out “Timex Rewound,” a new takeback and resale program.

GIA logo
GradingSep 21, 2023
Retailers Warned About Fraudulent Email Purportedly From GIA

The lab confirmed it did not send the message.


This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy

Additionally, paste this code immediately after the opening  tag: