字幕表 動画を再生する 英語字幕をプリント Synonymous with love, commitment and devotion, precious diamonds are set on top of over three quarters of all engagement rings. Americans alone spend eleven billion dollars on wedding jewelry every year. But it’s actually a pretty recent phenomenon. Here’s The Real Reason We Buy DIamonds “She’s the girl I’m going to marry. Get a load of this diamond ring!” Once a very rare gem, vast diamond reserves were found in South Africa in the late 19th century. “Diamond diggers line up ready for the word ‘go’ in the latest South African diamond rush” One of many prospectors seeking to make their fortune was Englishman Cecil Rhodes - he formed the De Beers company in 1888, and eventually took charge of much of the diamond trade, including mining, supply and distribution. But diamond sales dropped off during the Great Depression of the 1930s. So De Beers turned to another burgeoning industry for help. In 1938 De Beers commissioned Ad Agency N.W. Ayer & Son with making diamonds a necessary luxury in American lives. De Beers’ grip on the supply meant that whoever sold a diamond was likely selling one of theirs. The agency decided they had to convey the idea that diamonds were a gift of love: Men had to be convinced the larger and more beautiful the diamond, the greater the show of love. And women had to view diamonds as an integral part of courtship. “But before every wedding must come a prelude… that diamond is symbolic of a pledge” The agency went to Hollywood, tasking producer Margaret Ettinger with reinforcing the image of the diamond as integral to love - she influenced changing the movie title "Diamonds are Dangerous" to "Adventure in Diamonds" … and she supplied jewelry for stars like Merle Oberon and Claudette Colbert to wear on screen. Ettinger’s cousin, Louella Parsons, was a powerful gossip columnist and also on the payroll - her articles started paying particular attention to the love lives of the stars, featuring well- staged pictures of engagement rings, or focusing on lavish and aspirational jewels like Grace Kelly’s “twelve-karat square cut diamond engagement ring.” They became symbols of upward mobility - anyone could aspire to become like a movie star or a princess with their own diamond. De Beers even managed to get into schools and churches to discuss the history of diamonds - their true intention: sowing the seed with children that diamond engagement rings were a part of marriage and that it was a tradition. By the 1940s, as America’s men went off to war, the number of marriages started to rise. Ayer also used work by great painters like Picasso and Dali in their posters to associate the diamond with a piece of classic art. But it was a simple ad line that was to make the biggest impact - In 1947, Ayer copywriter Frances Gerety came up with the slogan ‘A Diamond is Forever’ and the association with eternal love was solidified. It’s appeared in every De Beers advert since 1948. It’s since been heralded as the ‘advertising slogan of the century’. It was so successful Gerety worked on every De Beers campaign until 1970. Shortly after it was immortalised in the Bond film of the same name. What the slogan did was create the concept that a diamond ring would be kept by the betrothed, for eternity, creating a special sentiment but also meaning fewer would be re-sold, therefore increasing the chance for De Beers to sell more, freshly mined stones. Ayer’s copywriters were also skilled in directing consumer spending habits - suggesting a month’s salary was a good amount to spend on a ring, then upping it to two by the 1980s. Over the same period diamond sales in the United States grew from $23 million to $2.1 billion. De Beers and N.W. Ayer & Son’s marketing masterpiece played on our emotions so powerfully that not only were they able to sell us a product we didn’t need but they influenced the culture of marriage.