While the demand for diamond jewelry grew by 7% in US & 18% in China, De Beers CEO Mellier said that the industry lost out on a lot of opportunities including multiple strong brands, unlike that witnessed in other industries. Citing the examples of Apple and Samsung, Mellier said that the diamond industry does not advertise much and to address consumer confidence the industry should invest in branding like any other luxury industry.
While speaking at the ‘Perspectives on the Diamond Industry’, Stephen Lussier, CEO Forever mark, presented several stats. He commented that with a 40% overall diamond demand, US still remains the largest and most mature diamond market followed by China, which is one third of the US market. The market has shown a “strong comeback” and diamond is three times more popular than any other jewelry.
As per De Beers research, online sales accounts for 18% of diamond jewelry items bought up from 14% in 2011. Lussier mentioned that consumers are 5 times more likely to buy a branded engagement ring than a decade ago. “Young consumers want something that they perceive to be differentiated, that has some emotion to it,” he said.
Right messaging for diamonds, development of several competing strong diamond brands and emotionally connecting with the consumers is the need of the hour for the industry.
Source: Bates, R. (2014) “Industry Must Embrace Brands, De Beers Execs say”, JCK Magazine, Reed Exhibitions, Reed Elsevier Inc.