Dube Designs finds golden opportunity in social media marketing
Investing in her social media marketing has allowed Jacqueline Dube, co-owner of Dube Designs, to tap into that customer base and bring them into the store.
Some days Jacqueline Dube, co-owner of Dube Designs a fine jewellery maker in Timmins, feels the need to shut out the world, ignore her email inbox and return to the bench as a goldsmith. But those days are becoming rare.
Over the past few years, Dube and her husband Marc have had to divide the duties to keep pace with the rapid spike in interest for the certified goldsmiths' hand-crafted jewellery and precise repairs.
“I don’t get to do as much as I wish I could but that's just the nature of it… you’ve got to run the shop,” says Dube. “That's where we’re both at right now – he’s better on the welder and I'm better on the computer.”
Since 2007, the certified goldsmiths have established themselves as innovative jewellers in the area. But COVID-19 elevated that interest.
“We had our two best years since opening and we were closed for a portion of it.”
Dube says throughout the pandemic, jewellery became a go-to gift.
“People wanted to make each other feel good,” she says. “If you couldn't go on the 25th-anniversary vacation, what could you do? You’d order a ring.”
However, it wasn’t all driven by people looking for ways to celebrate the milestones in a big way.
“I don't know about in other communities, but definitely in Northern Ontario, our Chamber of Commerce and other organizations did a fantastic job of really encouraging people to support local.”
But to capitalize on that interest, Dube had to double down on the business’s digital presence. When she heard about a $2,500 grant and digital training from Digital Main Street, a program combining grants and one-to-one support from the Province of Ontario alongside partners to help main street businesses strengthen their online capabilities and plan for the digital future, she jumped at the opportunity.
“My website needed upgrading,” she says.
During the pandemic, social media had been a key drive of sales and Dube had leaned in, using it as a centre point for marketing the business. But this past Christmas when things had been fully reopened, Dube was surprised to find that while there was an influx of in-store shoppers, there was
“another whole group of people who had gotten very comfortable chopping from their couch.”
Investing in her social media marketing has allowed her to tap into that customer base and bring them into the store.
“About 70 to 80% of my sales were still being social media driven at Christmas,” she says. Using the digital training she was able to better understand how to use social media to find her customers. “I was able to learn a lot about how to navigate (social media) and be a little more effective.”
It’s something she plans to continue, especially once a newer, sharper website is in place.
“We’ve been really fortunate to be able to get the help and the support that we’ve needed to grow.”
For fine certified goldsmiths' hand-crafted jewellery and precise jewellery repairs visit Dube Designs.
To learn more about the Digital Transformation Grant, and how it can help your business visit here.
Digital Main Street was created by the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA) with direct support from the City of Toronto. DMS is also supported by a group of strategic business partners, including Google, Mastercard, Shopify, Meta, Intuit QuickBooks, Square, Lightspeed, Ebay and Canada Post.
Continued investment from the Province of Ontario, through the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade (MEDJCT) has allowed the ongoing expansion the Digital Main Street Platform in order to support more businesses going digital across Ontario.