By Maria Landon

Blings anyone?  Jewelry has been a part of human culture since ancient times. Decorative sea shell beads have been found in archeological digs dating from as far back as 110,000 BC. Indeed, from the time when humans first started using clothes and tools, jewelry has been produced from a variety of materials: stone, animal skin, feathers, plants, bone, shells, wood, and emi-precious metals.

Jewelry’s purpose has always remained the same—to enable the wearer to express themselves in a nonverbal fashion, As such, jewelry serves to express culture, fashion and individuality, to showcase wealth, rank, political and religious affiliation or to reveal affection toward someone. This is what makes jewelry timeless and a target for constant development and refinement.

Historically, Jewelry’s development can be divided across three ancient civilizations: Egypt, India, and China (though with Greek and Roman influence as well). As the craft advanced, jewelry evolved from being an exclusive art form reserved for the rich to serving as common personal items of adornment. Today jewelry helps a wide variety of people express themselves in various visual fashionable ways. One jeweler that does so is Medawar’s Jewelry.

Paul Medawar Fine Jewelry store on Plainfield Avenue exemplifies a jeweler with an effective marketing strategy. This includes all the elements a good marketer ought to offer: a defined target market, excellent products, interesting packaging, and superior customer service. The store displays a lovely outdoor storefront of white columns, an aesthetically pleasing interior, a large center chandelier, glistening cases filled with sparkling gem stones, and the professionally dressed owners.

Store owners Paul Medawar and his two sons are essential to the store’s business success. The father is like a consummate symphony conductor, a strong presence who is always in control of the operation. He is a visionary with a European flair. “I control the whole business mentally. I am here every day.” The sons, his two concertmasters, Daniel, a certified Gemologist, and David, who is working on his certification, are gracious and extremely helpful.

Altogether, the family acts as a unit, working together to create a beautiful symphonic sound. Paul has instilled in his sons a strong work ethic, a sense of responsibility, a commitment to excellence, a strong concern for others, and pride in their work. All while never forgetting their good fortune.  “God has blessed us in many ways. My sons work so hard and I am very proud of them”.  As David states, “Our passion for what we do and how we do it sets us apart”. Not surprisingly, this attitude encourages employee loyalty as well (including 20 year store director). The three men are passionate about their work and their customers.

When asked about Medawar’s successful marketing strategy (and how they differentiate themselves from other jewelers), the owners respond that First, they’re perfectionists who demand and provide excellent quality; Second, they create their own designs; Third, their store carries unique products created by designers from around world; and Fourth, they provide superior customer service, all of which includes listening to the customer, making suggestions, keeping the experience hassle-free, creating a fast turnaround time, and providing after-sale service. They can also attribute their success to word of mouth and the many positive comments found in online forums. Their customer base/target market ranges from 15 – 80 with the primary market covering 35–55 year olds.

Indeed, Medawar Jewelers has strived to become well-known for its excellent customer service. For instance, very few jewelers have in-house staff dedicated to watch repair as the do. So its no surprise that customers will drive from as far away as Traverse City to have their watches repaired. As the company website states: “We continuously strive to maintain our highly respected reputation, and it is important to us that we make your shopping experience truly delightful.”

Maria Landon is an Affiliate in the Marketing Department at GVSU and can be reached at