Viral Spiral: Cazenovia Jewelry’s Gizmo Ads

It’s often said that “sex sells.” But cute sells just as well, depending on the product. And with emotion at the center of just about every single jewelry purchase, cute has its place in the creative realm of producing jewelry retail ads. Whether it’s suggestive or sweet, both approaches have to be executed well without hitting the viewer over the head. New York–based retailer Cazenovia Jewelry (with three locations in Cazenovia, Manlius, and Fayetteville) and its creative team have done this well with their ads featuring a mischievous pup named Gizmo.

West Highland white terriers hit a 9.5 on the “Cute-O-Meter” and are used in a variety of commercials. In the Cazenovia ad, man’s best friend gives his insecure owner a cold wet nose nudge to speed up the marriage-proposal process just in time for the holidays. The original Gizmo ad and its cast were used again in a sequel Christmas ad with the wife receiving a diamond bracelet from her husband.

The ads work well in giving the retail jeweler some brand equity in its market with a recognizable and memorable campaign. Cazenovia Jewelry even has a “Meet Gizmo” link from its homepage to the “Gizmo returns” ad on YouTube. The store also carries dog-themed jewelry, so the canine connection is reinforced from its main website and inventory in the store. See what industry video marketing guru Nick Failla says about Cazenovia Jewelry’s original Gizmo ad commercial and the sequel with nearly 3,000 combined unique views on YouTube:

Original Gizmo commercial

Gizmo returns commercial

“This video spot borders on unfair. How could anyone resist the Oscar-worthy performance delivered by this up-and-coming canine star? Gizmo captures our attention with a heart-melting, on-screen presence that would make Benji howl with envy. Who is this dynamic new heartthrob, you ask? Gizmo, an absolutely adorable little West Highland white terrier that makes the dog-centric commercials stand out in what is otherwise a sea of commodity-driven or sales-heavy commercials.

“This wonderfully warm combination of a cute dog, a stunning diamond engagement ring, and a panic-stricken young suitor is a winner. It is irresistible, instantly draws you in, and is very easy to relate to on two fronts. Audience members get that guys have to summon a lot of courage to pop the big question. And that as much as we call dogs man’s best friend, men really can’t control them as much as we’d like to think—as evidenced by Gizmo’s unbridled determination to take charge of the wedding proposal. Equally important is the ad positions Cazenovia as a warm, understanding, fun, creative store that is a must-visit for anyone contemplating the purchase of an engagement ring.

“Gizmo’s performance in the Christmas sequel was equally endearing and may even touch upon some of the emotions experienced by people whose loved ones can’t be home for the holidays, such as those serving in our armed forces overseas. But in the end, viewers discover that the once self-doubting suitor has been transformed into a clever husband. Both spots pluck very important heartstrings for a jewelry store conveying emotion in an ad.

“The combined number of unique views for the original and Gizmo returns ads are on the lighter end of viral numbers as compared to other commercials-turned-videos on YouTube. But when compared to other spots that experienced viral success these two videos share many of the same elements. The Gizmo spots still have the potential for the number of unique views to skyrocket. It may simply be a matter of broadcasting the spots more effectively using traditional media outlets, increasing exposure of the spots using social media platforms, or a combination of both.

“With luck, we will be seeing more of Gizmo in the future and I’m willing to bet that more than a few Christmas gifts will be delivered this year ‘Gizmo style’ by those having learned a couple of tricks from this spirited little pup with panache.”

Nick Failla