War Causes De Beers to Rethink Strategy

The war in Iraq has led De Beers’ Diamond Trading Company to rethink its advertising strategy, going for a “softer” approach that once again emphasizes romance.

“Some of our ads were straight to the point and blunt,” says Brandee Dallow, a diamond account spokeswoman at ad agency J. Walter Thompson. “But we felt that since we have a product that is about love, that’s what we should be showing at a difficult time like this.”

One ad that was pulled called diamonds “the mother of all Mother’s Day gifts.” DTC marketers worried that the line had echoes of Saddam Hussein calling the first Gulf War “the mother of all battles.”

“It just was inappropriate,” says Dallow. “It has negative connotations, and we want only positive things associated with our ads.”