DTC Sets 2002 Marketing Plans
Three-stone and solitaire jewelry, engagement rings and the Design Center will get the big push this year
Heartfelt emotions in the aftermath of Sept. 11 will be the focus of marketing efforts by De Beers Diamond Trading Co. for Fall 2002, says J. Walter Thompson, the companys advertising and public relations representative. Specific holiday plans will be announced later.
DTC plans a small increase in its marketing budget, and JWT says these dollars will go further in the current weak media market. The budget will cover strong promotions in four areas:
- Three-stone diamond rings and jewelry, using the past, present and future theme.
- Diamond solitaire jewelry.
- Diamond engagement rings.
- The online Design Gallery at adiamondisforever.com.
The three-stone concept continues to be strong, says DTC, leading the creative team that promotes the idea to extend it to occasions other than anniversaries. Two television ads continue to promote the past, present and future theme. The newer of the two ads, created after Sept. 11, features a young couple walking past an older couple (the back story is the older folks have been married for more than 50 years in real life). Both couples are holding hands. The voice-over message reminds viewers diamonds are the only thing besides enduring love that lasts forever. The media coverage of couples making renewed efforts to nurture their relationships after Sept. 11 helped spur the new ad.
Print advertising for women will continue to feature a romantic picture with a timeline showing the couples love is still alive. Mens ads will continue with the plain black Seize the Day campaign, a smart-alecky series with pithy statements that remind men of the benefits of diamond jewelry gifts.
Public relations efforts have been stepped up too, with public placements of three-stone jewelry on many stars, including Ellen DeGeneres and Megan Mullaly. The Diamond Information Center also works closely with newspapers and magazines, such as In Style, to reinforce how popular the three-stone look is among actresses. This effort has led to numerous articles about the trend.
The Diamond Promotion Service will offer continued trade support through a three-stone diamond jewelry CD-ROM featuring a variety of photographed popular styles, plus adaptable print ads, a downloadable Web page, Web banners, radio ads, additional copy lines, a press release and a prepared newsletter story. Jewelers also can contact DPS for billboard placements, postcards and in-case signs.
An education program for sales associates is available also.
Other efforts to spread the word through jewelers buying groups and catalogs are in progress also. The Independent Jewelers Organization, for example, is launching a three-stone program with five of its supplier members. The program will feature advertising slicks and a TV commercial to make it easy for IJO retail members to promote and sell the concept.
Diamond solitaire jewelry also will get a push this year with the emphasis on an advertising campaign now in development. The message will stress gifts more than womens self-purchase. A romantic theme is planned to emphasize how a diamond solitaire is with a woman all the time, reminding her of the significant other who gave her the piece. Larger diamonds will be touted in the campaign, which will launch in September in consumer magazines. Solitaire diamond jewelry will be featured also in mens Seize the Day ads. Public relations and trade outreach through DPS will continue to push these styles.
DTCs goal for its online Design Gallery, which now features 17 jewelry manufacturers with more to come, is to introduce consumers to branded lines and promote three-stone and solitaire jewelry. There are two television ads for the gallery, one featuring the sound of a beating heart that grows louder as the viewer sees the up-close details of diamond jewelry and the other showing an eye dilating as the excitement over seeing jewelry in this innovative format is felt.
The Design Gallery, introduced last year as part of adiamondisforever.com, features a high level of interactivity meant to appeal to savvy Internet users. Jewelry can be enlarged, rotated and viewed from all angles. The wide array of styles was designed to help diamond buyers narrow their choices before entering a retail store. Because so many young diamond buyers start their searches for products online, the Design Gallery is considered a highly visible entry point for new diamond purchasers.
The manufacturers featured in the Design Gallery direct consumer inquiries to retailers who carry their lines, leading many new consumers into stores. This year, there also are plans for jewelers to sponsor Girls Night Out evenings so they can introduce the Design Gallery concept to customers as the best place online to look at a wide selection of diamond jewelry. The Design Gallery will be promoted also through CD-ROMs, postcards, stickers and other material jewelers can obtain for distribution to customers. Public relations efforts are ongoing.
Diamond Engagement Rings
The core product in most jewelry stores engagement rings will continue to be promoted heavily online. A partnership with online search site Yahoo means DTCs 4Cs diamond buying guide sits on the site. The How to Buy a Diamond area on the Yahoo site links to adiamondisforever.com as a primary information site. A DTC ad banner always comes up on Yahoo when consumers search for the word diamonds.
Another DTC online partnership, this one with young mens magazine Maxim, features Bucks Dilemma, which includes funny but accurate explanations of a diamonds quality factors.
The online Design Your Own Engagement Ring portion of adiamondisforever.com will be redesigned this year and integrated into the Design Gallery. The plan is to offer a better experience to viewers using some of the bells and whistles developed for the Design Gallery and by tying into products by name-brand manufacturers. Young consumers already heavily use this online feature, and DTC expects this to continue.
DPS also will introduce a new diamond engagement ring commercial for jewelers. It will be available in May.
DPS, New York City; (800) 370-6789, www.dps.org.
by Peggy Jo Donahue