Since 1987, Khanna Gems Pvt. Ltd has been the benchmark of quality and of complete disclosure in the gem and jewellery industry. In this long period of existence, it has delivered complete customer satisfaction every time. Aaradhya Khanna, Chief Marketing Officer, Khanna Gems Pvt Limited, talks to Team Optimist about the journey of this reputed dealer in this industry.
Team Optimist: How did you begin your journey with Khanna Gems? How was your experience in the initial days?
Aaradhya Khanna: Since Khanna Gems is owned by my parents, they made sure that I learn all the intricacies of the business. In the initial days, I was given the task of sorting gemstones and diamonds according to their grades and then, I went through the extensive practice of identifying gemstones. Additionally, I learned lapidary work. Having learnt enough about the business, I found marketing the most exciting and important part of this business and spent most of my time in learning the key skills and, later, improving upon them. The most profound experience in the initial days was knowing how to identify the actual commercial value of a gemstone.
Team Optimist: What changes have you witnessed in the industry in all these years?
Aaradhya Khanna: The most remarkable change in this industry is that, earlier, it was thought that technology wouldn’t matter. But now, with the advent of technology, this industry is changing rapidly and more and more people are now buying gems and jewellery online. Moreover, such technology as Augmented Reality, Artificial Intelligence and so on has improved a customer’s buying experience compared with that of the traditional offline shopper.
Team Optimist: What is your idea of marketing in this specific industry?
Aaradhya Khanna: I believe that the gem and jewellery industry needs the most marketing efforts because customers don’t just buy gems and jewellery by seeing just one or two advertisements. Constant marketing efforts are required to build a brand. The most important aspect after advertising is that customers get the best-quality products at the most affordable prices. Till date, this industry runs on word of mouth. No matter how much you advertise and no matter if you’re a retailer or e-tailer, a customer will talk to three-four people before actually buying a product.
Team Optimist: Time and again, we’ve seen interesting brand campaigns in this sector. Do these campaigns have a far-reaching impact on traditional customers?
Aaradhya Khanna: Brand campaigns basically help inform buyers about the brand along with its USP, but the customer’s ultimate buying decision is influenced by his/her intuition and the industry, in general. If a person is convinced that gems and jewellery cannot be bought online, he/she will never buy them online, even if an online brand does 100 brand campaigns a year.
Team Optimist: Your future plans in the industry?
Aaradhya Khanna: We plan to expand our retail and e-retail footprints globally over the next five years. We’re also constantly working on technological innovations and plan to pioneer technologies that will disrupt this industry.
Team Optimist: What do you think of the journey of the gem and diamond industry in India after the GST era?
Aaradhya Khanna: There’s huge potential in this industry of expanding because of increasing domestic and international demands and because our country has the largest number of skilled artisans. On a macro level, GST will have no negative effect on the growth of this industry in the long run.