From a marketing standpoint, celebrities and jewelry lines are a natural pairing. Jewelry lines don’t always get the attention they deserve, drowning in a sea of “other.” But bring a celebrity into the mix and suddenly, bam! The jewelry line in inextricably connected with the celebrity.
Jewelry manufacturers say partnerships with celebrities set them on the fast track toward a branded product. Instead of spending years on advertising and marketing, their brand gets instant name recognition.
“To go in the direction of branding, you have to look at all of the options out there,” says Chad C. Haggar, president and chief executive officer of Kristall Smolensk USA, which worked with American Idol host and former pop star Abdul on a jewelry collection that was launched last September.
The Innergy line, available at Sam’s Club stores, includes diamond charm pendants engraved with inspirational messages and priced from $250 to $500. Kristall Smolensk has several other celebrity partnerships in the works, but Haggar declined to reveal them before deals are complete.
“I think celebrities are kind of branding their name and associating their name with these products,” says Pascal Mouawad, president of Mouawad, which has collaborated with supermodel Klum on a jewelry collection for about three years.
By designing the collection, which includes about 100 pieces of fine jewelry priced from $300 to $80,000, Klum can offer her fans a product with more than just her stamp of approval as a spokesmodel. Klum is heavily involved in creating the line, and Mouawad provides the expertise in production and distribution.
“The collection is doing very well,” says Mouawad. “We’re building our distribution. It’s very well received.”
He attributes the success of the collection to three things: design, price and marketing.
In addition to her involvement in the design, Klum is extremely visible in the jewelry’s marketing, appearing in advertisements and at special events promoting the line, to help consumers make the connection between the products and her name and image.
A-list actor Brad Pitt partnered with Damiani for a fine jewelry collection after working with the designer to create weddings rings for himself and his wife, actress Jennifer Aniston.
“For us it has been both a personal and professional privilege to have the opportunity to work with such an outstanding talent as Brad Pitt,” says Giorgio Grassi Damiani, vice president of the Damiani group and president of Damiani USA. “He has a unique sense of style and, combined with his passion for design and architecture, he provides a very special perspective to the collections in which Damiani and he work together.”
One bejeweled hand washes the other.