Brilliance, an online jewelry store, has made over $360,000 in five months from one Sumo pop-up on their website.
We talked with their marketing director, Michael, and asked him what they did to get these results. We also share six other great marketing strategies they use to outcompete traditional retail jewelry stores.
Inside you’ll learn how to:
Buckle up, buckaroos. We’re about to go down the diamond lane and learn the secrets behind Brilliance’s success.
Brilliance uses a pop-up to offer a 10% discount, eight seconds after someone visits the site, as an incentive for people to join their mailing list.
Before I talk about the reasoning behind that, here’s what the pop-up looks like:
Here are the views (157,792), email signup conversions (3,253), and conversion rate (2.06%) for the pop-up:
This pop-up alone has brought Brilliance $336,442 of revenue in the first five months from people using the 10% discount code to buy their jewelry.
When you see a 10% discount on any ecommerce website, it’s alluring to opt in if you’re considering a purchase. Even if you don’t want to use the code now, you might want to keep the code handy for later use, and the email gives the company a chance to build a relationship with you.
When someone signs up to your mailing list, they have actively agreed to receive communications from you. You can now talk to them and begin to connect with them, help them recognize your brand, keep them thinking about your product, and help nudge them to buy from you.
Here’s the email Brilliance sends after someone subscribers using that pop-up:
Key Takeaway: Use Sumo sign-up-and-save pop-ups on your ecommerce store to grow your email list. They’re very effective for getting potential customers’ emails, and allow you to build a relationship with your customers to increase your chances of making a sale.
There are a few types of emails you can send to deliver massive value to your subscribers:
The emails Brilliance sends, for the most part, are about new products they have in store. Brilliances email list is full of people who are interested in buying jewelry, whether for themselves, as a gift for a partner, or for an upcoming proposal, and they expect these kinds of emails.
The emails also include exotic products subscribers might like — dinosaur fossil rings, carbon fiber rings, titanium rings, and other unconventional forms of jewelry.
Here’s what one of these emails look like:
Michael mentioned these products get lots of clicks, meaning their audience finds the exotic products interesting.
Brilliance has found something their customers are interested in, and keep coming up with similar, engaging ideas to keep their audience engaged. They’re focusing on what works by continuing to put exotic forms of jewelry in their emails.
Whenever a user leaves with an item in their cart, or checks a product page but leaves the site afterward, Brilliance sends them a reminder of that item through email (if they’re logged into the Brilliance site). According to Michael, their open rates are as high as 40%, and their click rates are as high as 15%.
That’s effective email marketing.
Brilliance also gets:
Key Takeaway: Provide value to your customers in some way through email, and build a relationship with your audience. Interesting or informational content your audience finds valuable are great examples. When the time comes to send a sales email, they will be more inclined to buy from you. Also, send emails to logged-in users who abandon cart and product pages.
Brilliance sends approximately three emails a week to their mailing list.
Seem too much? Well, they’re raking in a lot of money from email. They’re obviously doing something right.
Check the dates here — once every 2-3 days is what they like to do.
Brilliance has in-house designers who make beautiful emails that showcase the content. Michael believes their emails are aesthetically very pleasing, and their target audience enjoys their emails because of that. Their conversion rates back up that claim.
Key Takeaway: Email your customers often. If your emails are valuable, and if your audience is looking forward to hearing from you, this won’t be an issue, and it helps improve your relationship with your customers.
Brilliance gets a lot of traffic from Pinterest.
They have 4.6 MILLION monthly viewers on Pinterest.
Pinterest is great for marketing jewelry because:
According to Michael, they don’t just use Pinterest as an advertising platform — they use it as a brand engagement platform. They do this by sharing different styles of rings, stories of their happy customers, and wedding-related content.
This is more effective, as buying an engagement ring is only the beginning of the wedding process. People, naturally, romanticize their weddings, and Brilliance shares content that really resonates with these people.
Here’s an example of some of their products listed on Pinterest:
People can find Brilliance when they search for engagement rings on Pinterest, and the high-quality photos entice them to look further into the brand.
Here’s a Pinterest ad by Brilliance, shown when you search for "engagement rings."
If someone’s looking for engagement rings, they want it to be special. Promoting the customization feature here shows potential customers that when they’re ready to order, they can get the exact ring they want.
The result? Customers either:
The headline of the ad, “Create Your Own Ring in Three Easy Steps”, is perfect for people shopping for such a special product.
It’s hard to choose an engagement ring — it’s a once-in-a-lifetime investment. The headline promotes simplicity, and is very benefit-driven. It also solves a pain point for the customer. As the ad is set up in a step-by-step layout, it reinforces that ordering an engagement ring from Brilliance is easy.
Also, why go to a brick-and-mortar store when you can find a reputable jewelry store online, and you can find or even create the perfect engagement ring for your fiance(e)?
For Brilliance, Pinterest not only brings traffic to their site, but it brings quality visitors who've already seen Brilliance enough times to think that it is a reputable brand that’s professional and successful. This matters a lot in ecommerce, especially when your average order value is $2,925.
Brilliance has seen Pinterest work for them, and they’ve allocated a lot of their advertising and marketing efforts to this platform. According to Michael, this was surprising to them initially, as Pinterest is a less-common advertising platform for businesses.
Brilliance also uses Facebook Ads and Google Ads, and found these are effective for them as well.
Key Takeaway: Use Pinterest if you’re selling visual products. Pinterest is an amazing marketing platform if your product's appearance is important. People use Pinterest to find products and ideas they like — leverage this.
We asked Michael if it was a problem customers couldn't touch the jewelry they intended to purchase. After all, you don’t drop three grand for a tiny piece of rock every day, and it’s only normal to want to see it.
He said the prevalence of online shopping really helps, as people trust online stores more than before.
Brilliance also offer a 30-day return policy because it helps ease customers’ minds. It’s a big deal to buy a $3,000 piece of rock attached to a metal band — what if it doesn’t look good in person? The return policy aims to solve this issue.
Another common customer concern in the jewelry industry is the diamonds being sold might be conflict diamonds. Brilliance is aware of this, and has an entire page devoted to this on their website:
Key Takeaway: Your customers have concerns about whatever you’re selling. Figure out these concerns, and solve them to put their minds at ease. This way, you’ll have an easier time making the sale.
Right now, Brilliance is focusing on improving their Instagram marketing.
More and more people are using Instagram the way they use Pinterest — to discover new, interesting things for topics of their choice. One of my friends even found his newest tattoo on Instagram, using the tag search feature.
In May of 2018, Brilliance had approximately 10,000 Instagram followers. In March 2019, they had 55,700. Instagram is allowing them to get more traffic they otherwise would have missed out on.
They get a lot of engagement on their posts — this post received 4,500 likes, and if you look at the comments, you can see how their Instagram marketing entices people to buy from Brilliance.
Who knows — maybe their Instagram traffic will end up outdoing their Pinterest traffic, and they’ll start putting more focus on it.
Michael also mentioned they constantly test different strategies to reach their customers — they test different kinds of emails, how often to send emails, and test different Sumo pop-ups on their website.
To stay on top of your marketing game, do what Brilliance is doing, and keep trying to improve your marketing. For a month, see how you can optimize your top marketing channel. Tweak it to see how you can improve your conversion rates.
The next month, try a new marketing channel, and see how that does. The point is not being stagnant and continuing to test new methods.
Key Takeaway: Keep looking for new ways to market your business. Not every attempt may bring you amazing results, but you’ll occasionally find a way to market your business that will yield great returns.
Here’s a tidbit from Michael: diamonds look amazing at jewelry stores because there’s a CRAZY amount of lighting. That’s why they end up spending ridiculous amounts on electricity every month. Now take a guess — what leverage does Brilliance have over other jewelry stores as an online jewelry store?
Yup. They save thousands every month on lighting bills. This means they can undercut the competition while selling the EXACT same diamonds as Tiffany, Cartier, and other world-famous jewelers.
They save so much on other expenses: rent, other utility bills, employees, other middlemen, and more.
Not touching and seeing a piece of jewelry might sound like a disadvantage, but Brilliance overcomes this by taking amazing shots of their diamonds, including lots of details about their products, and giving customers a 30-day return period.
Look how good this ring looks in the photo — it looks absolutely beautiful, and is very detailed.
You can also browse their enormous online collection instead of going to a jeweler and browsing a limited collection. For way cheaper. Delivered directly to your door.
Brilliance uses these points in their marketing. What they’d pay for lighting, they save for advertising and other costs.
Brilliance even has a custom jewelry creator on their website, allowing you to create the exact piece of jewelry that you want (unlike a traditional store where you only get to see the rings in stock that day). Here’s what that looks like:
You can pick the ring you want (there are 590 options at the time of writing), choose what diamond you want on it (there are thousands of options with prices ranging from hundreds to tens of thousands of dollars), and then personalize the ring further with custom engraving and other options.
Imagine how much a customized piece like this would cost at a brick-and-mortar store.
Key Takeaway: Use your advantages as an ecommerce business (which might, at times, look like disadvantages) to gain leverage over your competitors.
You’ve just read seven methods Brilliance uses to be successful as an ecommerce store in a very competitive industry. Use these insights from Brilliance on your ecommerce store to replicate their success.
For a printable, easy-to-answer worksheet made up of four questions guaranteed to give you great ideas to grow your ecommerce store and make your business more profitable, click the button below.