Grading

In New Campaign, GIA Emphasizes Emotion Over Education

GradingDec 06, 2021

In New Campaign, GIA Emphasizes Emotion Over Education

The untitled marketing campaign tells consumers GIA has graded some of the most important diamonds in the world, including theirs.

20211206_GIA consumer campaign ad.jpg
The Gemological Institute of America has a new consumer marketing campaign that will run across three markets: the United States, China and India. Pictured here is the first ad rolled out for the U.S. market. (Photo courtesy GIA)
Carlsbad, Calif.—The Gemological Institute of America has rolled out a new consumer marketing campaign, its first in more than a decade.

The digital-first, video-centric campaign, which has no formal title, launched last week and will run across three markets—the United States, China, and India—into 2022.

It will emphasize GIA’s expertise in diamond grading while also tapping into the emotion inherent in every diamond jewelry purchase.

That emotional element, GIA Chief Marketing Officer Mark Buntz said in in an interview last week, was missing in GIA’s previous campaign, which focused on educating consumers about the four Cs. 

“We have not focused on the human connection,” he said. “We have not really tied into that love and trust and confidence that we, as GIA, are trying to bring to the marketplace.”

The campaign’s first U.S. video features a couple, and it opens by letting consumers know the lab is “trusted to grade some of the rarest, most precious diamonds in the world,” like the Hope Diamond and the Taylor-Burton, as well as “the most valuable one of all”—the one they receive as an engagement ring.

WATCH: GIA’s New Consumer Campaign
New videos and display ads featuring different couples and single people buying jewelry for themselves will continue to roll out into 2022. 

“It’s a big part of our industry today and we want to celebrate that,” Buntz said of self-purchasers. “We want to shine a light on that.”

Buntz said the marketing campaign was shot over two days in Los Angeles and features 12 different couples as well as seven self-purchasers, all of whom will be divided up among the campaign’s three markets. 

The actors featured are diverse not just in terms of race and ethnicity but also age, and the campaign features same-sex couples as well. 

It will be seen across GIA’s social media channels in both paid and organic posts, as well as in online and print advertisements in the industry’s trade publications.

 Related stories will be right here … 

GIA also is putting money into radio, streaming services such as Hulu, and targeted online ads, meaning ads that will pop up on the computers of people with a certain demographic profile, for example, or who have recently made relevant searches. 

The campaign’s print, video, online, and radio elements link consumers to the GIA website, where they will find more information about diamonds tailored to their market.

The launch of GIA’s new campaign comes at a time when both jewelry sales and, likely not coincidentally, jewelry advertising are on an upswing.

The Natural Diamond Council’s “For Moments Like No Other” campaign starring actress Ana de Armas is in its second iteration and has been well-received.

De Beers revived “A Diamond Is Forever,” considered one of the best taglines of all time, for a global marketing campaign that launched last month


Like GIA’s campaign, the rebooted “A Diamond Is Forever” ads incorporate diversity and target consumers buying jewelry for themselves, not just couples.

Buntz said GIA decided it was time to refresh its consumer campaign to “make a deeper connection” with consumers today. 

The four Cs is now a widely adopted tool, and consumers have more access to information about diamonds than ever before. 

GIA wanted to evolve its messaging beyond that, to emphasize the role GIA plays in their diamond purchase journey, he said, and to make the point: the same graders who have, and will continue to, grade important stones like the Hope Diamond can be grading your diamond too. 

Michelle Graffis the editor-in-chief at National Jeweler, directing the publication’s coverage both online and in print.

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