“The world has gone digital.”
We’ve all heard it. We all know it. We see it among friends and family, and especially our kids. We see it when sitting on the train or waiting at the doctor’s office. Heads down, screens on, fingers scrolling.
And we feel it when we walk into a store. According to Google, 53% of consumers ALWAYS research online before deciding to purchase. And that was before COVID-19 accelerated internet shopping to never-before-seen levels.
The world has indeed gone digital. The question is, what does that mean and what will it look like for diamond retailers who must engage a new generation of “digital natives?”
The diamond industry’s digital transformation
The diamond industry has tended to regard itself as conservative and cautious.
It’s time though for a new self-perception.
The fact is, the diamond industry has already gone digital in many parts of the supply chain, from the mine to the jewelry store. Digital tenders are becoming more commonplace. Digital grading is speeding up in sophistication and penetrating the market with equal speed. Long-standing traditions in the practices of gemology are shifting, even at GIA, the industry's grading standard bearer for over half a century. The in-store consumer experience is changing too, with digital reports, traceability and other interactive tools designed to excite and engage diamond shoppers.
Who is it all for?
Meet Generation Z, also known as the “iGeneration”. They are constantly connected to one or more digital devices. They work, shop, play and socialize online. They are overloaded with information and stimulation. At the same time, they care about things like authenticity, making the world a better place, equality, ethical trading, protecting the environment. They want to know everything they can about where their diamond came from, and that their purchase is not harming the planet or anyone in it. That’s Gen Z, the youngest and largest adult consumer segment. They are today and tomorrow’s diamond buyers. And they require different messages and brand values.
Diamond marketing: the new standard
For many retailers, adjusting to the new digital consumerism is not necessarily easy. It requires a shift in mindset, and a drastic change in the very language, tone and voice retailers use to talk about diamonds. For decades, diamond marketing has revolved around traditional notions of “prestige” and “romance”. Sarine is here to add to that.
When it comes to making the identity shift to digital as a company, we know what it’s like. Over many decades, Sarine has been the world’s leading provider of advanced machinery for diamond planning and manufacturing. Over the past half-decade, we have spearheaded a digital retail revolution, with innovative technologies such as digital reports and interactive sales tools, Diamond Journey traceability and AI-based grading reports. Together with these new technologies, we have also created a new conversation around natural mined diamonds. Moving away from outdated notions of “luxury” with a fresh storytelling approach that celebrates diversity and authenticity, values that are important to the new consumer. For example, Sarine has launched a unique diamond campaign based around a core idea: “Just like a person, every diamond has a unique story waiting to be told.” Promoted on social media, the campaign has been an enormous success, generating over 1.1 million views on YouTube alone.
The next conversation starts now
Now, we are launching the next conversation – Tech-Tok style.
“iGeneration” expects authentic, trustworthy, digital experiences, and that’s also what they want from diamond retailers. With AI-based grading beyond the 4Cs, it’s exactly what they get.
With Sarine eGrading’s features and experiences, grading is a unique story that every diamond has to tell; not just the 4Cs but much more. Including light performance, hearts & arrows, inclusions, and traceability, delivered in an interactive, exciting format, available on any device or screen. This digital diamond report can easily be shared with friends, family, and social networks – and all based on verifiable, objective, authentic diamond data, generated by Sarine’s AI-technology.
It's not just about the message; it's also about the medium. That’s why Sarine will launch a new campaign in September with what we call “Tech-Tok style” content. It’s a series of bite-size videos that explain the desirability of diamond technology and digital experiences, in a voice and personality that the digital native generation will respond to. It’s about simplifying complex information about diamond shopping into engaging, fun info-tainment value that drives interest among a generation that’s seen just about everything.
And most crucially, this new conversation will create the trust and connection that the diamond industry must cultivate among new consumers in order to thrive in a fast-paced digital world.