DPS/JWT Kick Off ‘Journey’ Diamond Campaign in Vegas

The Diamond Promotion Service expects “Journey” diamond jewelry to be the next big sales opportunity for retailers and manufacturers.

Following on the heels of its successful “Past, Present, Future” theme for three-stone diamond jewelry and the “Raise Your Right Hand” message associated with the right-hand ring, officials from DPS and ad agency parent JWT said the “Journey” diamond message of “With Every Step, Love Grows” offers the kind of meaningful story that, when combined with the right designs, could elevate diamond sales to the next level.

“We are absolutely convinced that ‘Journey’ will be a very important seller for the industry,” said Richard Lennox, JWT’s global business director. Lennox was one of the featured speakers during a breakfast presentation to kick off the campaign at The JCK Show ~ Las Vegas on June 4 titled “’Journey’ with DPS to a New Diamond Jewelry Product, Your Next Big Sales Opportunity.”

“Journey” features four or more diamonds of different sizes in a graduated pattern from smallest to largest. The gradual increase in the size of the diamonds represents the growth of a couple’s love and a strengthening of their relationship over time.

DPS executive director Lynn Diamond provided some historic context for the “Journey” diamond campaign, based on the group’s experience with the successful “Past, Present, Future” and right-hand ring campaigns. Diamond noted that three-stone jewelry alone generated more than $10 billion in sales from 2000 (when “Past, Present, Future” was launched) to 2005—and the concept is still growing, with three-stone sales increasing 11 percent last year. Diamond added that studies have shown that 75 percent of all consumers are aware of “Past, Present, Future.”

“What we’ve learned [from the previous campaigns] is that if you take a compelling story and marry it to exciting design, you give customers a reason to want it,” Diamond said.

Claudia Rose, director of business strategy for JWT, noted that, with other luxury products and services competing with and out-marketing jewelry, JWT/DPS recognized the need for a new approach to drive diamond sales beyond the traditional concept of “looking at what sold.” Instead, they focused on research to discover what consumers would love to have. When the “Journey” idea was tested, 76 percent of women and 71 percent of men found the concept different and appealing, Rose said, and 71 percent of those polled said they’d be interested in seeing and acquiring “Journey” diamond jewelry.

Diamond branding expert and diamond sales trainer Diane Warga-Arias stressed that sales associates need to understand the “Journey” concept and know how to personalize the message for each customer. For instance, when addressing a couple, the salesperson’s presentation should focus on the lovers’ own special journey, she said. For a man shopping alone, the message should be how he can be a “hero” with his significant other by buying a gift with so much meaning. For a woman shopping alone, the focus should be on celebrities who have been seen wearing “Journey” diamond jewelry—which makes it a fashion-forward category that’s still full of emotional resonance.

“Celebrities, designers, and manufacturers already love the design,” Warga-Arias told the mostly retail audience. “Make sure your people know how to sell “Journey” diamond jewelry and present it with rich, descriptive language that reflects the personal story of the two people shopping in your store.”

According to Lennox, one of the strengths of the “Journey” concept is the “hundreds” of design possibilities to keep it fresh and unique. DPS/JWT also plans to increase consumer and trade advertising and offer “robust” sales training and marketing support programs. This includes increased investment in Christmas advertising to help jewelers carrying “Journey” diamond jewelry to “break through the clutter.”

Lennox previewed parts of a new commercial JWT is preparing for the fall campaign that shows the metaphorical story of two dandelions that find each other, connect, travel together through the updrafts and downdrafts of a windstorm, are nearly separated, but ultimately continue on. The story ends when they meet a human couple on a beach celebrating their own “journey of love” with a piece of “Journey” diamond jewelry.