De Beers Touts ‘Statement Diamonds’

De Beers is launching a new campaign for what it calls “statement diamonds”—solitaires of a half-carat or more.

Executives at J. Walter Thompson, the marketing agency for De Beers’ Diamond Trading Company, say the campaign was spurred by research showing that women want larger stones but are afraid to ask for them.

The agency decided on a humorous approach and developed a series of print ads that will break in September. The ads lightheartedly compare a woman’s reaction to a smaller diamond vs. her reaction to a larger stone. For example, in one ad, the smaller stones are accompanied by the word “palpitations.” But the larger stones include the message, “Somebody call the paramedics.” On another, the smaller stones are seen with “I am woman,” and the larger stones with “Hear me roar.”

“The message is that diamonds are romantic in any size, but they’re transporting in a half-carat or more,” says Wendy Trees, JWT partner/account director. “We didn’t denigrate smaller diamonds, but we are saying it’s okay to want larger ones. Women in our focus groups said it was a relief to hear their ‘inner voice’ expressed in a likable way.”

Diamond Promotion Service executive director S. Lynn Diamond says the campaign isn’t meant to push only larger stones. “When we say ‘trade up,’ we mean whatever you are buying, you should get a little larger,” she says. “This is a campaign to move everyone up.”

The ads will be backed by a public relations campaign and trade support.