Millennials don’t want Diamonds
Since the 1940s, the diamond industry has hitched its wagon pretty solidly to the wedding industry. Since De Beers’ famous “A Diamond is Forever” campaign, diamond engagement rings became the choice of brides to symbolise the life-long commitment that marriage is meant to be. As the generation of millennials has reached the age when previous ones have started to settle down and marry, they showing that they are making vastly different choices than their parents and grandparents before them. Here’s why it’s bad news for diamond industry.
Fewer millennials and getting married
Millennials are not getting married at anywhere near the rate of the preceding generations. Millennials are also sceptical about the marketing messages of big diamond brands and the suggestion that a groom should spend three months’ salary on an engagement ring. Millennials are dedicated to making informed and educated purchases, trolling the internet for the best possible stones they can find for less, according to Forbes.
Millennials are choosing non-traditional stones
For most of the 20th century, diamonds were the stones of choice for newly engaged couples. Today, non-traditional stones are considered more unique and serve as a means of self-expression for millennials; a way for young consumers to rebel against what they see as the diamond industry’s heavy-handed marketing.
“Millennial consumers have distinctive preferences, which in many ways diverge from previous generations,” Bank of America Merrill Lynch analyst Ashley Wallace said in a research note from June 2016. “They tend to be more value conscious, more concerned with sustainability and ethical production, and often value unique and individual products versus items that are standardized and mass-produced.”
Millennials value different things
The model of marriage idealised in the 1950s – a working husband and stay-at-home wife – has changed drastically, and it makes sense that other traditions such as diamond engagement rings would change too. Millennials, it seems, place less importance on material possessions, such as diamonds, and instead prefer to spend their money on experiences and travelling. This in conjunction with their meticulously researched spending habits and desire for ethical products, has meant that the diamond industry no longer holds such power over purchasing choices.
Take a look at some of our more unusual engagement ring options here.