Branding and the Homogenization of Retail

The retail jewelry scene confounds many in the corporate world. It remains one of the few industries still dominated by independent retailers and the independently owned manufacturers and wholesalers that supply them. It's a business where the brand continues to be the local retail jeweler, despite rhetoric from manufacturers trying to play the brand game with once- or twice-a-year spends in consumer magazines where they tie in local retailers. This is branding? De Beers' branding effort has the diamond world concerned on two counts. The first is at the trade level, where it has promised "better" goods to suppliers who develop consumer brands. The theory is that the more money spent on promoting diamonds to the consumer by diamond manufacturers who are trying to establish "brands," the more the consumer will buy "branded" goods from retailers. At the same time, De Beers is entering t

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