According to a Pandora representative, Gen Z and Millennials are expected to be key growth drivers, representing more than 60% of personal luxury goods consumption by 2026.
So naturally, Gen Z seems to be the consumer group that many brands are favouring. Young TikTokers, influencers and what-nots have a voice with wide reach and every brand wants a piece of the pie.
Freelance writer and jewellery consultant with ten years of experience in the industry, Becky Stone, says: “I think that there was, and still is, a real fear that generations after Baby Boomers are not interested in fine jewellery. These brands are now hoping to target a younger audience and create the idea of luxury as something that requires their brand.”
Brands are approaching the challenge of cracking the code to Gen Z’s jewellery habits in different ways. Pandora has brought out several collaborations with brands such as Disney and Marvel Studios, launching its Gen Z specific collection Pandora ME, with ambassadors including Addison Rae and Evan Mock, and a recently launched limited collection Keith Haring x Pandora.
“Brand builders or ‘cult collabs’ will stretch the brand into new territories by tapping into new areas like art, fashion, and music. Keith Haring is our first collaboration of this type,” says a Pandora representative.
Swarovski was an early bird to the Gen Z party, having undertaken a rebranding in 2021. Simultaneously, earlier this year the Austrian brand appointed Bella Hadid as a new ambassador and was involved in the Supreme x Vans collaboration released October 20.
Jewellery influencer and writer, Katerina Perez has over 13 years of experience in the industry. She says: “More and more brands, even those who create jewellery out of precious materials and gems, are targeting a younger audience and are creating accessible collections that easily can be worn every day. It is a new type of target audience that the brands can tap into.”
Tiffany has focused on teaming up with brand ambassadors that are right up Gen Z’s alley including names such as Hailey Bieber and Anya Taylor-Joy. The brand’s latest ambassador was none other than Queen Bey, B, Sasha Fierce, or whatever tickles your fancy.
The singer, who so graciously gave us Bootylicious, also starred in Tiffany’s latest campaign, entitled Lose Yourself in Love. The commercial campaign, which in reality could double as a music video, features a short snippet of Summer Renaissance from Beyoncé’s latest album.
The video is set in a club with dancers voguing, cuts to various party scenes and is topped off with Beyoncé wearing an embellished chain dress and, of course, custom Tiffany jewels ideal to dance the night away to the disco inspired background bop.
MA Fashion Media and Communication student, Adrienne Van Der Merwe, says: “Fine jewellery brands that are working with ambassadors such as Beyoncé, I would see as becoming more modernised.” She continues, “I also feel more inclined to buy from brands when they do collabs with brands like Disney.”
While these collaborations and campaigns hit the nail on the head in terms of appealing to Gen Z, have the brands gone too far for their older consumers?
Stone says: “I think giving the brand a different vibe than they are used to can make older consumers uncomfortable. No one wants to feel like their favourite brand does not care about their business anymore – it is alienating.” She continues, “It is a delicate line to walk when trying to shift brand messaging like this, and I think it is too soon to tell if these recent shifts have been successful as a whole.”
London based brand, Tilly Sveaas, has taken an alternative approach to wooing Gen Z by focusing on the similarities between generations. PR representative from Tilly Sveaas, Sasha Whiddon, says: “At the moment, for our next campaign, we are casting for two men from two different generations to show that your average 21-year-old man can wear the same necklace as their 60-year-old father.”
Statistics from Professional Jeweller in collaboration with Google Analytics and Python show that as of October 2021 Pandora had 738.5 million hashtag views proving that its latest strategies of working with influencers has succeeded. However, this statistic will mainly represent Gen Z and will not necessarily reflect whether there has been backlash from older consumers.
Time will tell whether the laser focused Gen Z marketing strategies will pay off. In the meantime, brands are not wasting any time and already have other projects in the pipeline. A Pandora representative explained that collaborations were a great way for the brand to grow its core business and will continue down this avenue. Tiffany has also announced that there will be more to come of Tiffany T x Hailey Bieber in 2023.