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Building A Brand: THE DE BEERS STORE CASE STUDY


Jacullo: I don't think the new store ads effectively leverage the "A Diamond is Forever" slogan, which was one of the most recognized ever. The new slogan is a good play on words but is far less powerful than the slogan that became part of the American lexicon. The campaign's stylized female image is ethereal and beautiful but I think it is off the mark of what appeals to the modern woman. There is a disconnect between the merchandise and the advertising.

McCormick: I like the imagery. It is creative, eye catching, and of-the-moment. However, there again appears to be a disconnect between the message and the offer. The model and the image reflect fashion and creativity, a modern perspective. The actual merchandise, decor, and shopping experience do not. Customers in general will not associate "A Diamond is Forever" with the new slogan. For the most part, I believe that De Beers does not need a slogan, the name speaks for itself. "Forever, Now" seems fussy and contrived and in this case unnecessary.

Peterson: I like the slogan, because it reflects our culture today that is driven to live in the moment. It is short and effective and I think the customer will not only be able to remember it, but associate it with the De Beers brand.

However, the Renaissance imaging is perplexing. It is not modern. I am confused by the visual reference to Eve with the apple. It evokes in my mind a museum with a mantra of look, but don't touch. The campaign does nothing to enhance the De Beers branding position of being modern and approachable.

Are there any services or retail experiences that are distinctive or innovative?

DeGarmo: Anything that helps men understand the issue involved in buying a ring is good. The use of technology, such as the store's "Beauty Scan," to explain the qualities of a diamond is terrific. The lounge areas, such as the "Sparkle Lounge," are also quite successful. For anyone who does not like to shop, you can quickly understand the scope and price of merchandise.

Jacullo: The bridal bar on the second floor is creative in its merchandising. It presents engagement rings in a far less intimidating way for that first time jewelry buyer. She can know right away what she can afford or not, which takes pressure off the consumer. The lighting on the merchandise was very effective with the small directed lights that did not detract from the merchandise.

Peterson: I visited the store in early August. My first impression was that there was an awkward silence in the store. Salespeople were speaking to each other in whispers and not interacting with customers. This level of detachment also permeated the second floor where only one salesperson was visible. He was trying to show merchandise side-by-side with prospective customers and the scenario just didn't look comfortable or relaxed.





diamond ring
The new De Beers LV store in New York City presents engagement rings at the "Bridal Bar," and often displays signage with price and carat size ranges.
interior of DeBeers store NY, NY
De Beers' contemporary New York City store was designed by Italian architect and interior designer Antonio Citterio, who has also designed stores for Damiani, Valentino, and Ungaro.
ring by Neil Lane
De Beers LV will open its second U.S. store, on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, this month. It will feature a new jewelry collection by red-carpet favorite Neil Lane.
Renaissance jewelry
Renaissance model
Modern or Renaissance? Our consultants have mixed opinions on the new De Beers print magazine ad campaign, which shows a Botticelli beauty and uses a "Forever, Now" tagline.
Talisman collection rings
Merchandise at De Beers LV ranges from engagement rings to unique, cutting edge designs. The "Talisman" collection includes textured signet rings with rough diamonds.
Todd DeGarmo
Todd DeGarmo
Jean Jacullo
Jean Jacullo
Ilia McCormick
Ilia McCormick
Paula Peterson
Paula Peterson
Spiral Rose brooch
De Beers LV has a lot of potential, and competition, to become the diamond jewelry destination. This "Spiral Rose" brooch is from the store's new "Talisman" collection.