David Squires

David Squires

Thursday, 03 December 2015 19:00

10 Holiday Videos Your Competitors Are Running

This week, we survey the landscape in jewelry commercials for the 2015 holiday season and rank the offerings from top to bottom. Best of the bunch: a gloriously campy treat from Cartier that features a Broadway-esque dance number and diamond earrings flying over Paris. Worst of the lot, by a mile: Blue Nile's ridiculous hatchet job on American retail jewelers.

1. "Diamonds" from Cartier

Over-the-top in the very best way. A glitzy spectacular that unfolds on the rooftops and in the skies over Paris. Features an updated version of the classic song "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" with fancifully updated lyrics: "If you still want to part-ee-ay, go straight to Cartier." And there's even a brief cameo by Cartier's iconic panther because ... of course.

2. "The Gift" from Tiffany

All the right elements. An attractive couple, a gorgeously streetlit Manhattan in the snow, and a sweet torch song. Ending line has got a lot of punch: "There are gifts you give. And there are gifts you can't wait to give." Nicely done.

3. "It's a Long Journey To Become the One" from Forevermark

Epic, but weird. Feels like Forevermark's attempt at a new take on Apple's "1984" commercial. This viewer's decidedly lowbrow reaction to scenes of men crawling out of the dark cavern and then, first stumbling, finally racing each other toward their ultimate goal: is this a metaphor for the reproductive process? A little while later, it became clear: "Oh, it's a diamond talking." Also a bit off: the fantastically handsome suitor opening his palm to reveal to his ladylove, instead of an engagement ring, a loose diamond.

4. "Diamonds in Rhythm" from Kay Jewelers

Middle of the road, but hey, the middle of the road isn't the worst place to be. Cute family perkily interacting in homey yellow-lit rooms. Fake snow falling outside. Brand position is stated in a memorable manner: "The number-one memory maker in America". And, of course, there's the omnipresent jingle: "Every kiss begins with Kay". Try to get that one out of your head after you've heard it a couple of times.

5. "Two Diamond Ring" from Reeds Jewelers

Reed's commercial template for this year's holiday season is interchangeable with those of its rivals. Chirpy neo-folk soundtrack with female vocalist. (Seriously, you could switch the soundtracks for the Kay, Pandora and Zales commercials without anyone noticing a speck of difference.) Slow panning shots of Christmas decor and attractive mid-lifers cuddling, drinking coffee and watching snow float to earth. In this particular spot, Reeds makes the two-diamond argument that still eludes this reviewer — "one diamond for your best friend, one for your true love". Commercial closes with Reeds' fairly powerful brand-positioning statement: "Your family-owned jeweler, trusted for generations".

6. "Wherever Life Takes You, Take It With You" from Pandora

A family's journey through life, represented by new additions (cute puppy followed by cute child) to the group and ever-more-thickly-beladen Pandora bracelets. Cute, but underwhelming.

7. "Tolkowsky Cut Diamonds" from Kay Jewelers

Good idea: the mass-market jewelers endeavor to explain the magic of diamond cuts from an industry genius to the American public. Bad idea: they try to do it in only 15 seconds.

8. "Unstoppable Love Collection" from Zales

My take away from this commercial is ... who is this family's landscaper? I want his number. Because that backyard looks amazing. As for the slogan: "That's a diamond kind of love"? And such a kind of love "must be declared"? And that Zales is the only place where you can find the appropriate means with which to declare it. Meh.

9. "Endless Brilliance Collection " from Zales

Some additional "A diamond kind of love" from Zales, featuring a guy who has defaced half a ski slope to show his mountain-sized passion for his partner. Meh.

999. "Ring Shopping Shouldn't Be Scary" from Blue Nile

Absolute bottom of the barrel. Watch this one and feel your blood fry. Shopping at a local family business is ridiculous? Really? The average jewelry salesperson is 97 years old and possesses a horribly fake smile filled with yellow tombstone teeth? Really? Closing slogan: "Value Redefined. Thankfully Online." Thankfully online? What an upside-down world we live in.

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Wednesday, 14 October 2015 20:00

Lil Wayne's What Does Life Mean To Me

Thirty-three year old Lil Wayne is almost as famous for his love of jewelry as he is for his rap output. Few artists have sung, or whatever you call what Lil Wayne actually does, as much about precious baubles and bling as he has. This week's jewelry lyric comes from his song "What Does Life Mean To Me?" from his pre-breakout 2002 record, 500 Degreez. As a statement of purpose, it ain't much — against a deep soul beat and quickly listing Wayne's primary interests in worldly affairs — marijuana, cars, sex, and women with sizable posteriors. And, oh yes, jewelry.

Want more lyric art? Check out additional selections from Toby Keith, Dean Martin, Fleet Foxes and Jermaine Dupri in the gallery below.

Lil Wayne What Does Life Mean To Me lyrics

Wednesday, 07 October 2015 20:00

Toby Keith's Christmas Rock

From country superstar Toby Keith's 1995 holiday album, Christmas to Christmas, "Christmas Rock" is a jaunty little ditty that tells a mordant tale of a husband's effort to economize during a tight holiday season. His wife, unfortunately, has other ideas. Other sparkly, expensive ideas that you are undoubtedly familiar with.

I said, "We need to hold it down this year"

And in her eye she got a big ol' tear

She wants a Christmas rock

But Santa's pockets ain't got no roll

Need more lyric art? Check out additional selections from Dean Martin, Fleet Foxes and Jermaine Dupri in the gallery below.

Toby Keith Christmas Rock lyrics

Wednesday, 30 September 2015 20:00

Dean Martin's Buona Sera

Okay, it might not rank up there with love, sunsets, the sparkle of a beautiful woman's eyes, or rocking' out till the break of dawn, but jewelry is well-represented in popular song. We begin our art series (with downloadable desktop backgrounds) with a tune from an old favorite, Dean Martin. Known as "The King of Cool", Martin was both a member of "The Rat Pack" as well as one half of the country's top comedy duo, along with Jerry Lewis. While "Buono Sera" may not have been one of Martin's biggest hits, it was a favorite of many and includes a special sentiment that might have some meaning for a few jewelers of a certain age out there. Not feeling the Dino? No problem. Check out lyric art from the highly eclectic combination of Fleet Foxes and Jermaine Dupri in the gallery below.

Dean Martin's Buona Sera

Wednesday, 02 September 2015 20:00

Countdown: Top Shine Blogs For August 2015

Today, we're going to go back in time. All the way back in time to the beginning of last month, where we'll present your favorite Shine Blogs stories of August 2015.

Monday, 01 September 2014 20:00

Countdown: August's Top Shine Times and Blogs

Today, we're going to go back in time. All the way back in time to the beginning of last month, where we'll present your favorite Shine Times and Shine Blogs stories of August.

This week, we bring you another simple exercise to improve your marketing from the book “Do It! Marketing” by David Newman. This one is called, “The Cup of Coffee Question”. (Though I think it might be even better if it was renamed “The Bottle of Beer Question” or “The Glass of Wine Question”.)

Tuesday, 25 February 2014 19:00

Give Your Advertising the Black Marker Test

Is your advertising sufficiently different? Is it helping you stand out, or is it just blending into the drone/clutter of marketing messages surrounding consumers in your town.

Here’s one test you can try to find out, suggested by the bloodthirstily-titled marketing book, Do It! Marketing: 77 Instant-Action Ideas To Boost Sales, Maximize Profits and Crush Your Competition by David Newman.

Tuesday, 04 February 2014 19:00

Project: The Why People Buy From Me Worksheet

I'm currently reading "Do It! Marketing: 77 Instant-Action Ideas To Boost Sales, Maximize Profits and Crush Your Competition".

Here's one intriguing project from the book -- one author David Newman calls a "million-dollar idea".

Tuesday, 21 January 2014 19:00

A Parable: A Man, a Boy and a Donkey

Came across a nice parable while reading Michael Port's Book Yourself Solid: The Fastest, Easiest, and Most Reliable System for Getting More Clients Than You Can Handle Even if You Hate Marketing and Selling. Review coming soon in the pages of INSTORE. Anyway, here goes:


Two-Time Winner

When it was time to close its doors, Cranstoun Court Jewellers of Sun City, Arizona chose Wilkerson to handle its liquidation sale. For all involved, the sale “far exceeded expectations.” But it wasn’t the first time Wilkerson helped sell off the store’s aging merchandise. They were there 13 years before, when ownership changed hands. See how Wilkerson can help you when it’s time to liquidate or sell off aging inventory.


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