Pricing is at the heart of making the case for rarity of diamonds, which in turn is key for restoring consumer demand. Pricing, however, has also been the Achilles' heel of the diamond industry, especially in a context of increased consumer knowledge.
Ehud welcomed the generic diamond marketing campaigns that emphasized the rarity of diamonds. In July 2016, he wrote "The return of a relevant generic diamond marketing campaign is a blessing. 'Real is rare. A diamond is real' is a step forward to changing the current consumer mindset and is naturally inspired by 'A diamond is forever'".
At the same time, Ehud realized that in the current market structure, allocating sufficient funds to invest in an impactful marketing initiative is not simple, and suggested a possible solution, "In view of our fragmented sector, diamond players should consider branding alliances to jointly invest in promoting diamonds".
Ehud always believed that the diamond industry could change its course and generate renewed consumer interest in diamonds. Ehud envisaged three demand directions for polished diamonds, each fulfilling a certain need, each addressing different budgets, and each fitting different economic approaches to buying diamonds.
In Ehud's words: "The future vision of diamond consumption should have three parts: The traditional market of diamond jewelry. With a popular price point and made from the cheaper part of diamond production, can compete with other gifts in the shops. The second is that of fine and high-end diamond jewelry. These niche market items are expertly designed and are fit for the bridal and the luxury sector. The third venue, and the one with a growing importance, is diamonds for wealth perseveration - a tool to store value. These diamonds will be bought and treated specifically for that purpose and with a new methodology that is based on the economy of rarity."
Ehud Laniado passed away on March 2, 2019. It is hard to digest this news from someone who made a lasting impression during his lifetime. Ehud's writings on the diamond industry over the years are reminiscent of his desire to share his thoughts on the diamond industry, which remain as relevant today as when first published.
Over the last five years, Ehud often discussed the need for the diamond industry to act in unison to address some of its most pressing challenges. As a first step, there is the need to ask the right question, starting with what explains the decline in consumer demand.