Brand Ahoy?

It’s the year 2002, and a new De Beers commercial has premiered. The two shadows approach each other as the now-famous classical music plays. With trembling hands, the male shadow gives the female a diamond ring—the ultimate symbol of his love. Suddenly, we see the female’s face. Her eyes well up with tears. “I’m so glad you’re happy, honey,” the male shadow says. The female responds: “I’m crying because I wanted a De Beers diamond, you jerk!” That’s one ad you’ll never see—De Beers would never take such a marketing approach—but many believe it’s only a matter of time before commercials for De Beers diamonds hit the airwaves. Last January, in the press release that reverberated around the world, De Beers announced it would offer its first-ever “branded” stones in a test sale at three stores of English retail chain Boodle & Dunthorne. It lat

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