Not Just another Jewellery Ad!- Reaching out to the Millennials

Jewellery advertising is undergoing a metamorphosis, with fresh, new themes and storyboards that reflect the changing societal attitudes and new-age customer preferences. Besides, the medium of the message is changing as well, discovers Suneeta Kaul

Post By : IJ News Service On 20 September 2021 3:33 PM

Think of a jewellery ad you saw last. In all probability, you must have seen a regular young woman buying a bauble for herself to celebrate some life moment, or a young man gifting a dazzling piece of jewellery to his wife/girlfriend/ sister/mother to celebrate a life moment, or just because he wanted to appreciate her for what she is.

Now think of a television commercial for jewellery dating back about six to seven years or so. Chances are you remember a young woman in bridal finery, decked with jewellery from head to toe, with loving parents in the background.

Jewellery advertising has changed. There is a shift away from a wedding being the sole purpose of jewellery. Jewellery is now an extension of life, it is a celebration of events. A job, a promotion, an achievement, or any other life moment can call for jewellery. And this will, naturally, reflect in the way jewellery is advertised Navya Suhas, Head of Online Marketing, Bhima Jewellery

Yes, jewellery brands are re-positioning themselves, and not only are they sending across a different message, they are also sending it across differently. Gone are the days when a jewellery ad essentially harped on the theme of a wedding. The past few years have seen a tectonic shift in consumption patterns, where jewellery is no longer purchased just for marriages and traditional festivals. It is something you buy to mark any joyous occasion, be it a new job, a salary bonus, or just passing your exams with flying colours, and the advertising is duly reflecting that trend.

Departure from age-old themes
Keeping in step with these developments, jewellers are reaching out to a younger audience, especially women who are not bashful about buying expensive treats for themselves, and in order to connect with this segment, jewellery brands are thinking of fresh, innovative ways to promote their message. It is no longer enough to be on TV; this is the age of Instagram and Facebook and YouTube, and a host of other social media platforms.

Says Navya Suhas, Head of Online Marketing, Bhima Jewellery, Kochi, “Jewellery advertising has changed. There is a shift away from a wedding being the sole purpose of jewellery. Jewellery is now an extension of life, it is a celebration of events. A job, a promotion, an achievement, or any other life moment can call for jewellery. And this will, naturally, reflect in the way jewellery is advertised.”

Even the multi-media campaign of the World Gold Council (WGC), unveiled in July this year in partnership with the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), talks more about self-expression and spontaneity, rather than weddings and festivals.

According to Somasundaram PR, Regional CEO, India, WGC, “Gold jewellery has always been at the centre of celebrations of the most cherished moments in life. For the millennials, this horizon has expanded to embrace moments of self-expression and individuality, marked by spontaneity. It is time for the narrative of gold jewellery to evolve and align with the changing mindset of the Indian consumers. The idea behind this campaign is to reinforce the relevancem of gold jewellery in a meaningful way by demonstrating its contemporariness and versatility, it tells the story of today’s millennials and inspires them to celebrate their most treasured life moments with gold.”

 

 

New expressions, new platforms
Additionally, not only has the theme of the ads changed, there has also been a significant shift in the way the ad reachesm the target consumer. Pratap Kamath, Director, Abaran Timeless, Bangalore, says, “Jewellery brands do not advertise the way they used to any more. Earlier, it was mostly hoardings, radio spots, print media, including airline magazines, newspapers, and TVCs. Now, it is mostly about social media. People consume a lot of content from social media. Eyeballs are constantly on a smartphone. Even while driving, people prefer to check their smartphone at crossings; they don’t even look up to notice hoardings .”

For the millennials, this horizon has expanded to embrace moments of self-expression and individuality, marked by spontaneity. It is time for the narrative of gold jewellery to evolve and align with the changing mindset of the Indian consumers Somasundaram PR, Regional CEO, India, World Gold Council

With jewellers taking the digital route for brand promotions, the avenues of advertising have opened up considerably. “You can send your brand message through so many types of digital platforms, including social media, emailers, text messages, and so on. The jewellery industry has embraced the digital media and has found it very useful for targeted brand promotions,” says Varghese Alukka, Managing

Jewellery and influencer marketing
A significant change in jewellery advertising has been the onset of influencer marketing. Jewellery brands are promoting their products by tying up with digital content creators and social media influencers. While celebrity endorsement in jewellery advertising has been around for quite a while, influencer marketing is an idea whose time has come, with several jewellery brands collaborating with online influencers in order to send across their message.

Says Ishu Datwani, Founder, Anmol Jewellers, Mumbai, “We are trying to establish an active digital presence through our social media platforms and influencer marketing. Nowadays, people do check out fashion websites, blogs and social media to know what the celebrities are wearing, and they like to own those pieces. So, it does help boost sales. With changing times, digital influencers have emerged as effective communicators as they connect a brand to youngsters. A millennial consumer is independent and makes her own jewellery buying decisions. She follows social media influencers due to the credibility they have in the given subject and takes their opinions seriously. Therefore, an endorsement from an expert plays a role in helping the consumer make a decision.”

Agrees Kamath, “Influencer marketing as an advertising tool for jewellery brands is here to stay. Digital influencers play a major role in brand promotion. What makes them influential is their large following on social media. People get convinced by them when they speak for a brand or a cause. Recently, Abaran tied up with RJ Shraddha, and we were very happy with the results.”

Jewellery brands do not advertise the way they used to any more. Earlier, it was mostly hoardings, radio spots, print media, including airline magazines, newspapers, and TVCs. Now, it is mostly about social media. People consume a lot of content from social media. Eyeballs are constantly on a smartphone. Even while driving, people prefer to check their smartphone at crossings; they don’t even look up to notice hoardings Pratap Kamath, Director, Abaran Timeless

While there is near unanimity about the importance of influencer marketing when it comes to jewellery brands, some industry players feel that the influencer segment will take a while to get organized and show tangible results.

Anantha Padmanabhan, Managing Director, NAC Jewellers, Chennai, says, “Our multi-channel advertising consists of social media and more of direct marketing techniques. Yes, we have tie-ups with all kinds of influencers, and we feel that it’s the next big thing. But as of now, the entire influencer industry is very unorganised. In the next one or two years, things will fall in place.”

Jewellery brands are also discovering that collaborating with digital influencers is not only an effective means of brand advertising, it is also very economical, compared to traditional advertising. “We are hiring local YouTubers from the area surrounding our stores, and we are pleasantly surprised to find that they can do a lot for us. We introduce our special jewellery brands, new collections, designs, etc, through them. As they are neighbourhood celebrities, people pay attention to their words. Sometimes we use paid campaigns of celebrities. That way, their followers can watch our ads. Not only are we able to send across our brand message, it is also the cheapest way of promotion. We associate with all types of digital media, online promotions, and web portals, including OTT platforms. In this tight market, we should always be ready with social media posts, stories, statuses, blogs, and so forth, to promote our new collections,” explains Alukka.

Ads that take a stand, make a statement

Jewellery brands are also beginning to take a stand on several societal issues that face the country today. The change in their target audience has emboldened them to incorporate unconventional, and, as some might view it, controversial themes in their ads

Take the case of Bhima Jewellers. Earlier this year, the 97-year-old company came out with the “Pure as Love” campaign that chronicles the journey of a transwoman from her childhood to adulthood, and goes on to show her being accepted by her family for who she is. Her father gifts her anklets, and in the last scene, she is shown in bridal attire and jewellery.

Says Suhas, “This campaign took everybody by surprise, as people were not expecting a family-owned company to come out with such a bold statement. As a brand with tremendous goodwill and credibility, we wanted to lend our voice to causes that matter today, and show our support to the LGBT community.

With changing times, digital influencers have emerged as effective communicators as they connect a brand to youngsters. A millennial consumer is independent and makes her own jewellery buying decisions. She follows social media influencers due to the credibility they have in the given subject and takes their opinions seriously. Therefore, an endorsement from an expert plays a role in helping the consumer make a decision Ishu Datwani, Founder, Anmol Jewellers

“With this campaign, we want to push the message that whoever one chooses to be, the brand is there to serve and empower, not to judge, and that jewellery is something that should be enjoyed by everyone. I faced a lot of backlash from within the company when I suggested this theme, but I stood firm as I wanted to take a stand. Normally, jewellers don’t take a bold stand.” Interestingly, the ad features a real-life transwoman, Meera Singhania. Other jewellery companies have also taken the path less trodden and come out with unconventional themes for their ads, such as a dusky woman going for a second marriage, with her daughter present at the wedding. In addition to these bold themes, jewellery brands are also picking up causes that are relevant to today’s times.

Jos Alukkas, for instance, recently came out with its “Shine On” campaign that portrays the hurdles faced by women from all walks of life. The ‘shine’ of the jewels is metaphorically compared to the shine of the women who face numerous obstacles on a daily basis.

Similarly, Anmol came out with the “Real women love Anmol” campaign some years back, which celebrates women for who they are. Says Datwani, “Anmol has been one of the few brands in the jewellery space to acknowledge ‘Real Women’ as celebrities, and as an extension of the same belief, we launched the campaign ‘Real women love Anmol’ in 2015. The success of the first edition led to the second edition of the campaign, launched in September 2017, making ‘Real women love Anmol’ a property in itself.”

Our multi-channel advertising consists of social media and more of direct marketing techniques. Yes, we have tie-ups with all kinds of influencers, and we feel that it’s the next big thing. But as of now, the entire influencer industry is very unorganised. In the next one or two years,things will fall in place Anantha Padmanabhan, Managing Director, NAC Jewellers, Chennai

However, not all industry players feel taking up causes to promote brands is either necessary or desirable. “As a jewellery brand, we feel it’s unnecessary for the brand to get into such strong socioeconomic issues in a big way. Yes, a post on social media is fine but not as a mainstream campaign,” Padmanabhan opines. Alukka agrees, saying, “We feel the jewellery industry should not do such types of campaigns to attract customers. An FMCG product company can do these types of ads. Gold is an emotional product in every Indian family. We use this sentimental approach to promote our brand. Gold has the power to give happiness to all members of the family. However, we certainly support women’s rights. Last year, one of our major campaigns was based on the empowerment of women.”

Basics not forgotten
Even as the new trends in jewellery advertising are shaking things up and bringing in fresh perspectives, it does not mean that the connect with the traditional media and the basic theme of jewelleryfor- brides has been totally forgotten. Says Kamath, “It is my belief that digital is the future, but we can’t completely disassociate from the traditional media. TV commercials are still relevant, print advertising is still happening. Even hoardings are being put up, but fewer than before. We too have made changes to our strategy. We now put hoardings outside the city, and have just one or two of them within the city.”

Similarly, ad campaigns will continue to showcase bridal jewellery, successful out- of-the-box storyboards notwithstanding. A case in point is Kerala-based Malabar Gold and Diamonds, which has just come out with the ninth edition of its “Brides of India” campaign, with a special wedding theme song, #MakeWayForTheBride. The three-minute video features filmstars Anil Kapoor and Kareena Kapoor Khan.

“The ‘Brides of India’campaign is our tribute to the new-age brides and their
awe-inspiring individuality,” says Malabar Group Chairman MP Ahammed, adding, “Over the last ten years, ‘Brides of India’ has played a pivotal role in showcasing our versatility in catering to bridal jewellery needs all around the country. With the launch of the ‘Brides of India 2021’ campaign, we celebrate the brides who choose to make the big day all about themselves. With designs that cater to varied sensibilities of new-age brides across regions, there is something unique for every bride to complement her unique entry.”

Over the last ten years, ‘Brides of India’ has played a pivotal role in showcasing our versatility in catering to bridal jewellery needs all around the country. With the launch of the ‘Brides of India 2021’ campaign, we celebrate the brides who choose to make the big day all about themselves. With designs that cater to varied sensibilities of new-age brides across regions, there is something unique for every bride to complement her unique entry MP Ahammed, Group Chairman, Malabar Gold and Diamonds

And lastly…
The new face of jewellery advertising is a manifestation of an attitudinal shift in the country, brought on by economic empowerment and changing demographics. But while it is tempting to proclaim that the old is out and the new is in, the fact remains that traditions die hard and much of the population still associates jewellery with weddings and important festivals. All the same, jewellery is being increasingly bought for reasons other than weddings, and jewellery brands are bringing that to the fore in their brand promotions.

The metamorphosis has begun. 

 

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