Rapaport Magazine

The Diamond Promise

The Diamond Producers Association is finding a new way to talk to Millennials about diamonds.

By Amber Michelle

The recently established Diamond Producers Association (DPA) is in the process of developing a fresh marketing platform that will make diamonds relevant to Millennials. Jean-Marc Lieberherr, chief executive officer (CEO) of the DPA, discusses the goals of the organization and concepts that are being developed to address the new generation of diamond buyers.
   Staying in step with the changing attitudes of the consumer, DPA is using an innovative strategy to promote diamonds to Millennials. Lieberherr points out this segment of the buying population has not really been exposed to diamond marketing for many years, if ever. The objective of the new DPA marketing plan is to connect Millennials with diamonds emotionally in a way that is relevant to their lives and to what is important to them. The overall creative concept is to find out what the fundamental truths are in the lives of Millennials and then to find out what it is about diamonds that plays to those truths.
   “We are not looking at a campaign. We are looking for a marketing platform, a promise that will make the diamond category relevant to the Millennials’ truth, to relate to deeper aspirations and motivations and to establish an emotional connection,” comments Lieberherr. “Then we will build on a platform that will establish a durable, sincere and emotional dialogue with Millennials that will carry on for years to come. We will create campaigns from there. We want it to be relevant to everyone. It is about what makes a diamond a unique product and what is deeply important to Millennials. Then we will establish a deeper connection on a more fundamental level. We have developed a category promise for diamonds.”
   The DPA chose Mother New York as its agency of record. Lieberherr explains that they were looking for a creative agency that was familiar with the Millennial market and in a dialogue with the people they want to reach. “We needed a fundamental rethink of how we express diamonds,” he notes.

   According to Lieberherr, three key insights were derived from Mother New York research that will drive the creative and marketing strategy: First, the world of Millennials is uncertain. They are exposed to superficial relationships and experiences that don’t stick. Millennials look for what is meaningful to counterbalance superficial relationships and fast technology. There is an aspiration for what is genuine and sincere.
   Second, there is a lot of baggage attached to the symbolism of a diamond, meaning that it is more convention driven than emotionally driven. Emotion is making a personal statement that is a celebration of something special between two people that is intimate and meaningful to them, rather than the more traditional engagement or anniversary occasions. It is about what is meaningful to them at this moment.
   The third insight is about the positive associations with diamonds. Those associations are that diamonds are solid, from the earth, genuine, very reassuring and soothing. It’s about more than beauty and success. Diamonds are like an anchor. “The attractiveness of a diamond is what it means; it almost has more of a metaphysical value to it,” notes Lieberherr.
   While the marketing platform is currently slated to be on social media, Lieberherr does not rule out the possibility of moving the DPA message into more classic channels. The scope of the project will be determined by what happens after the launch of the social media platform.
   As part of its overall strategy, the DPA has plans to work within the industry as well as to help it get more in line with the values of today’s society. “We will want to be established as a credible source of information on the reality of diamond mining and the ecosystem that depends upon it, including environment, employment and social benefits. We want to make sure that it is understood. We also want to be a force for improvement in the industry to improve various practices, transparency of supply chain, as well as best practice on safety and health standards.”

Deep Connection
   Ultimately, the goal of the DPA is to create a greater sustainability in the diamond industry so that miners and investors are incentivized to invest due to social impact and to deliver an emotionally beneficial product to consumers.
   “It is very important to re-establish a deep emotional connection between consumers and what diamonds stand for. Diamonds can touch the soul in a way that no other product does,” concludes Lieberherr. “A diamond is a product that is associated with what is genuine and sincere and we want consumers to relate to it emotionally. We want to move away from traditional occasions and we want people to link diamonds to moments in their life.”
   Further details of the DPA marketing initiative will be released during the JCK show at 8:00 a.m. on June 3, 2016, in Tradewinds C and D at Mandalay Bay.

Article from the Rapaport Magazine - May 2016. To subscribe click here.

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