Thus, even the nature of romantic relationships and the way they are experienced is evolving, younger consumers still appear to be confirming their belief that diamonds remain a symbolic expression of modern-day love.
There are other incentives for buying diamonds that are gaining ground, particularly in the more long-established markets. In the United States, the Insight Report notes, the rapid growth in self-purchasing and familial gifting has placed engagement and wedding diamonds and other forms gifting between partners at 48 percent of the total women’s diamond jewelry market value
This less that the figure reported in China, where love-related occasions account for 58 percent of the value of diamond acquisitions.
India, the third largest market for diamonds, differs from the United States and China since most marriages are arranged. There, jewelry gifting for weddings is from the families and not from the groom to the bride.
In Japan, which represents the fourth largest market, love gifting accounts for 52 percent.
of all diamond jewelry sales by value, the Insight Report states
INCENTIVES FOR DIAMOND PURCHASES INFLUENCED BY AGE
Age is a factor when it comes to deciding what type of consumer will make a love-related diamond purchase. Clearly, the majority of diamond buyers to be in this group are those who are at the stage of their life where they are contemplating marriage. Thus love-related purchases represent half of the value of all diamond jewelry acquired by Millennial women in the United States and 61 percent in China.
In 2018, the De Beers Group commissioned special research on diamonds in the context of engagements and marriages among Millennials and Generation Z consumers in the United States, United Kingdom, China and Japan. In the study, it became clear that young people strive with equal intensity to fulfil needs not only to follow tradition and express the specialness of love, but also to imbue everything they do with individuality, self-expression and creativity.
The expanded notion of couple relationships presents an important area for the diamond industry to develop its offering and meet consumer desires for diamonds as gifts of love, beyond the traditional rites of passage, De Beers stated. But, since every diamond is unique, it should be marketed as a perfect symbol for a personal expression of love.
A SYMBOL OF BETROTHAL FOR MORE 600 YEARS
Although diamond engagement and wedding rings as a diamonds a standardly purchased product is a phenomenon largely of the 20th Century, having been kickstarted by De Beers’ now-famous “a diamond is forever” campaign, the gemstone has actually been have been a symbol of unwavering love for centuries.
In 1477, Maximilian I of Austria gave Mary of Burgundy a diamond ring in celebration of their marriage, and largely is credited as being the first groom to do so.
For the Chinese, assuming a de-escalation in the trade conflict with the United States, demand is poised to increase as the country’s growth transitions to being driven by consumption.
In India, after several years of demand declining, the re-election of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to have a positive impact on the general business outlook, De Beers stated in its report.
Longer term, the growing middle class of China and India offer the most upside potential if demand for diamond products continue to grow.