Light Years began as a small shop in 1985 and is still locally owned and operated today. Its specialization has always been and is still jewelry, but the shop also offers gifts, crafts and home accessories. On its website, Light Years promises to provide a unique selection, friendly service and great prices.
Roman capital letters that are horizontally stretched form the Light Years logo. The unique arrangement and variation in size of the letters add a quirky touch to what otherwise might be a very simple word mark. The serifs (feet at the ends of each letter) almost twinkle like stars, contributing to the shop’s celestial name. Overall, Light Years’ logo is recognizable and fits with the shop’s unique personality.
Outside the Light Years on Franklin Street hangs a black awning. Its triangular shape protrudes onto the sidewalk and puts the logo at an advantageous angle to attract pedestrians passing by.
But the logo’s distinct arrangement also makes for a striking sign outside its shop in Southpoint, shown below.
Light Years’ web design has come a long way, especially considering this is what it looked like in 2008.
The current design primarily highlights Light Years’ latest jewelry collection through a wealth of professional photos.
Another feature of Light Years’ website is its blog, which has publicized new collections, sales and special events. Posting more frequently and about a greater variety of topics related to jewelry and local artisans might boost engagement. Francesca’s, a national boutique that sells similar merchandise, keeps up with a Tumblr. The blog extends beyond promotional material and often posts educational articles. While Light Years may not have the same resources, it could feature local jewelry artists, discuss trends, offer gift advice, etc.
Light Years has set up a good foundation on social media through strong visuals, but a few tweaks to its strategy could promote growth and more engagement. First, Light Years should alter the names of its accounts so that its handles are consistent across all platforms. Right now, Light Years’ Facebook and Instagram accounts have the highest following, and both are under the name of “lightyearsjewelry,” which is also the domain name for the shop’s website. By switching its Twitter and Pinterest names to conform, it will be easier for potential consumers to search and find any account owned by Light Years, and the consistency will avoid confusion and improve brand recognition.
Light Years posts sharp photos to its social media accounts that frame jewelry and other accessories in a warm and well-lit environment. But analysts have shown that top brands post more often than what Light Years averages, which is not quite once a day. Posting up to twice a day on Facebook, three times a day on Twitter and Instagram and five times a day on Pinterest is generally recommended, though it ultimately depends on the quality of the content.
Currently, Light Years posts the same content across platforms with the same descriptions, which can come across as lazy. While posting similar content can work if followers on every outlet will take interest, Light Years should consider providing a lengthier description of the same photo on Facebook while keeping things short and sweet on Twitter and Instagram.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Light Years has developed brand recognition with its simple but quirky word mark that can be adapted for the shop’s building signage and website. Its blogging and social media efforts have established a good foundation for building an online presence. Light Years has an opportunity to boost its following by posting more frequently and with a variety of educational and interactive materials that pertain to its audience. What would you like to see on Light Years’ blog?