Thank you for agreeing to judge the nominees for the GEM Award for Marketing & Communications. The three nominees have filled out a questionnaire and their answers and work as submitted are featured below. The nominees are listed in alphabetical order and include:

All nominees will be judged for their body of work from July 1, 2015 – June 30, 2016.

Criteria for GEM Award for Marketing & Communications
To a company or an institution, for excellence in marketing and communications through a consumer strategy that includes: print, broadcast, advertising campaigns, public relations efforts and the resulting editorial coverage, special events, iconic or visionary packaging and collateral, and the cohesive branding message the consuming public regularly receives as a result of the above.

Hearts On Fire


Social Media Brand Pages

Instagram (Company Page)
Instagram (Ilaria Lanzoni)

Examples of Communications Strategy/Campaigns

Disruption – thinking differently – is in Hearts On Fire’s DNA. That heritage of challenging the conventions of the category is one of the keys to the success of our first-ever global advertising campaign: Ignite Something.

The luxury jewelry category had long been speaking almost exclusively to an older consumer. And they were doing so quietly; most campaigns were traditional, staid, safe. In our research to develop the campaign we uncovered an insight that would shape the foundation of the idea: the luxury consumer of today is very different than those of past generations. In fact, the luxury market is being defined by this new consumer: the Millennial.

The Millennial generation is completely redefining the luxury market; forcing brands to think and behave very differently and to connect with them in ways these brands had never done before. They have a new expectation of how brands will play a role in their lives. These consumers have a thirst for doing, not just having. Creating and SHARING experiences is completely natural for them. In fact, our research showed they want the things they buy to be more than just things – they want and EXPECT that these things will become experiences; important parts of their lives they don’t just own, but that they share. Millennials crave experience and they expect a different, more active role in their relationships with brands.

These insights, while particularly true for Millennials, really define the mindset of a new luxury consumer: women who are dynamic and passionately alive. They look beyond the 4'Cs and they are after something new, something that speaks to them. Communication with these consumers is fundamentally different than communication with any other consumer group in history.

The Ignite Something campaign speaks directly to them. It represents Hearts On Fire as a luxury brand that doesn’t put itself on a on a pedestal and that isn’t out of reach or out of touch. Ignite Something is relevant, it’s differentiating, it’s ownable and it has global scale. Retailers have embraced it, consumers have responded to it and shared it, the industry has recognized in the year since the campaign’s launch, we have truly made it integral to who we are as a brand. Why? Because only the perfect cut unleashes a diamond’s brilliance and its power to ignite.

Ignite Something is the foundation that has led to and will continue to lead to hundreds of other variations. Ignite Love, Ignite Happiness, Ignite Passion, are just the beginning. Globally this campaign has the power to last through the ability to focus on words that are more meaningful in different cultures across the world. The campaign takes on a different form with each new person who has come into contact, Ignite Something signifies something different to everyone and that’s what gives it the longevity to last well into the future.

Ignite Something has no limits, Hearts On Fire is The World’s Most Perfectly Cut Diamond and only the perfect cut can unleash a diamond’s brilliance and its power to ignite. A Hearts On Fire diamond is the start to a lifetime of adventure, success, passion, love, we celebrate the significance of beginnings while embracing the thrill of endless possibility.

35% increase in coop advertising dollars spent since the launch of the campaign
20% growth in social followers since campaign launch
Ignite Something activation around the globe in Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, UK, Caribbean, Singapore, Malaysia, Canada and the US

Visual Samples of Communications Strategy/Campaigns


Kay Jewelers


Social Media Brand Pages


Examples of Communications Strategy/Campaigns

    1. “Ever Us” 2015 - 2016
      Summary: Kay strategically supported the global launch of the new Signet Ever Us brand through promoted content, resulting in more than 25M highly targeted impressions. Content aimed to generate awareness for the new collection and drive traffic to the retail brand e-commerce pages and Ever Us microsite from November 2015 – February 2016 by targeting key purchasers and purchase influencers celebrating an upcoming anniversary.
      a. Ever Us “Hit The Road” Commercial
      b. Ever Us “Share With” Commercial
      c. “Ever Us Share With” Digital Display Ads
      d. November 2015 – February 2016: Kay Jewelers Supports Ever Us Social Media Recap
           -Promoted content seeded awareness among women for anniversary gift ideas and among men to drive them down the purchase funnel to gift the jewelry to their significant other.
           -On Facebook and Instagram, content targeted users at a time relevant to them – those who had an anniversary within 30 days or newlyweds who had been married for about a year. 
           -Income targeting and message rotation ensured social media users were not oversaturated with messages from different brands across the Signet portfolio.
           -On Pinterest, content was targeted to women using key terms related to jewelry and anniversaries. 
           -Customized messaging (dozens of variations of images and copy) was optimized across channels to achieve awareness, consideration and conversion. 
           -Social media also designed a menu of organic content to further increase awareness and reach of the brand.
           -At the conclusion of the campaign, a Nielsen Brand Effect Study measured the impact of the campaign on consumers and showed an increase in ad recall and purchase intent.

    2. Hall of Fame
      Summary: Kay Jewelers leveraged the excitement and energy around the biggest sporting event of the year, Super Bowl 50, to celebrate its relationship with the Pro Football Hall of Fame and distinction as provider of the Ring of Excellence. This omni-channel activation featured a major media integration, full-coverage of Super Bowl 50 Radio Row, dedicated social media efforts and ecommerce support. 
      a. “Grown Man Cry” Commercial
      b. February 2015 Super Bowl 50 Begins with Kay PR/Social Media Recap
      Public Relations
           -Kay Jewelers participated in all five days of Radio Row in advance of the historic 50th Super Bowl in San Francisco, CA.
           -Hall of Famers Andre Reed, Tim Brown, Derrick Brooks and hometown hero Jerry Rice, acted as brand ambassadors participating in interviews with major national media in support of the Kay/Pro Football Hall of Fame relationship.
           -The media tour generated more than 1.4 billion impressions and more than $18 MM in publicity value. For context, the impressions generated are commensurate with the reach of 12X the audience of Super Bowl 50 (the third most-watched program in television history); additionally, the publicity value is equivalent to the expense of four 30 second in game spots during Super Bowl 50.
      • Social Media
           -On Super Bowl Sunday, Kay maximized the multi-screen experience by engaging fans with “big game” content on Facebook and Twitter to leverage the trending social conversation surrounding the Super Bowl and further increase reach of the brand. Owned Super Bowl content garnered nearly 1.2MM impressions.
           -Pro Football Hall Of Fame ambassadors and media influencers extended reach of Kay branding by posting content on their own channels to help drive social media buzz.

    3. Engagement Season
      Summary: A lot goes into finding the perfect ring and planning a romantic proposal, so in October 2015, Kay launched the “Kay Proposal Plan Sweepstakes” to help ensure the moment and the ring are exactly what the couple both dreamed. This dedicated social media sweepstakes aligned with the broader Kay marketing theme, “Engagement Season,” as well as with Signet’s “Best in Bridal” corporate initiative.
      a.“From Every Angle” with “Engagement Season”
      b. October 2015: Kay Jewelers Celebrates Engagement Season: The Kay Proposal Plan Sweepstakes Social Media Recap
           -The Kay “Proposal Plan” Sweepstakes encouraged participants to create a customized proposal plan by answering fun, quiz-like questions to determine their ideal proposal and their dream engagement ring. Each plan was pinnable on Pinterest, shareable on other social media channels and included an option for emailing the results to a significant other. We extended the campaign by curating a team of bridal influencers who helped encourage entries by pinning to a dedicated “Proposal Plan” Pinterest board. Finally, to drive purchases, recipients of the emailed plan received a unique Kay promo code to entice them to visit a Kay location to purchase the ring of their significant other’s dreams (with their proposal plan in hand, of course)!
           -Simply for completing the quiz, participants were entered for a chance to win one of 10 $100 Kay Jewelers gift cards.
           -The sweepstakes resulted in 24,697 total entries and 11,525 email opt-ins (47% opt-ins, well above the industry standard of 20%-30%.). The campaign generated more than 48K social engagements and nearly 2.9M impressions on Facebook and Twitter. The added promotional offer drove in-store traffic and sales.  
      c. “From Every Angle” Digital Display Ads
    4. Holiday
      Summary: Kay got into the spirit of the season during holiday 2015 with the “Merry Match Sweepstakes,” which invited our social media fans to play an interactive, holiday-themed memory match game for the chance to win beautiful jewelry prizes. The campaign aligned with the Kay “Memories” marketing theme and featured our top gifting and bridals brands during our key holiday season. 
      a. “Memory” Commercial
      b. Holiday 2015: Kay Jewelers Celebrates Holiday Memories: The Kay Merry Match Sweepstakes Social Media Recap
           -Fans could enter the Merry Match sweepstakes daily via a dedicated microsite that was promoted on our Facebook and Twitter channels. Each day, we featured a new collection within the game, including some of the most sought after gifting and bridal brands: Colors in Rhythm®, Diamonds in Rhythm®, Open Hearts by Jane Seymour®, Neil Lane Designs®, Le Vian®, Citizen®, Sofia Vergara®, Bulova®, Miracle Links®, Artistry Diamonds®, Tolkowsky®, The Leo Diamond®, Tissot® and Charmed Memories®. 
           -We randomly selected one winner to receive a piece of jewelry from the featured collection each day, for a total of 14 prizes during the course of the two-week campaign.           Players could also earn bonus entries for each friend that entered when they invited them via Facebook or Twitter. Although the campaign ran in early December, we strove to fulfill many of the prizes in advance of the Christmas holiday so our winners could wear or gift their jewelry to loved ones.
           -Merry Match was our best performing sweepstakes to date, with 326,179 total entries and 73,106 email opt-ins.
      c. Holiday 2015 Catalog

      Additional Examples:
    5. Star Wars
      Summary: Kay Jewelers launched its Star Wars collection in the fall of 2015 in advance of the eagerly anticipated release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Support for the collection included dedicated advertising, sponsorship of the Force 4 Change Event in NYC, media outreach, social media efforts and ecommerce support. 
      a. “Her Story” Commercial with StarWars
      b. Kay Jewelers Celebrates Star Wars: The Force Awakens PR/Social Media Recap
      • Public Relations
           -Kay Jewelers was the presenting sponsor of the Force 4 Change event in NYC on December 2, 2015. This unique fashion meets fundraising initiative was dedicated to empowering people to make a positive impact on the world around them.
           -As part of the special event, Kay presented a one-of-a-kind diamond and gold BB-8 collector piece. Here are some details on this amazing piece and the work that went into bringing it to life:
           -The BB-8 features 18K yellow gold and over 18 carats total weight of diamonds. Each of the 860+ diamonds were hand-set. It stands 4 ¼ inches, is 3 ¼ inches wide and weighs over 1.5 pounds. More than 600 hours went into the design and development of this unique piece.
           -The BB-8 piece was raffled off at the Jewelers For Children Facets of Hope event at JCK Las Vegas 2016, raising $125,000 to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, a long-time partner of Kay Jewelers.
           -The sponsorship and media outreach in support of the jewelry collection generated more than 1 billion impressions. Major national media outlets covered the collection in advance of holiday from many relevant interest areas including syndicated pieces from both the Associated Press and Reuters, online versions of national daily newspapers (including USA Today and the New York Times) fashion (including Glamour and InStyle), pop-culture/lifestyle (including People and Huffington Post), business (including CNN, Fortune and CNBC), tech (including Mashable and CNet), and fashion/accessories trade (including Women’s Wear Daily and JCK Online), among others.
      • Social Media
           -Content promoting the Star Wars Collection on the Kay social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and a dedicated Pinterest board) garnered more than 5.8MM impressions and 474K engagements (likes, comments, etc.).
           -The social media activation supported key initiatives from the Force Friday kick-off in September, to the Force4Fashion event, and ultimately The Force Awakens premiere in December. The movie premiere post,”BB-8 rolls into theaters tonight. What will you be wearing when the Force Awakens?” garnered more than 17,000 engagements. We rewarded the most engaged and creative fans for their enthusiasm with two “Surprise & Delight” giveaways of Star Wars jewelry.
           -The Star Wars campaign garnered extensive third-party social media support. Highlights included Chewbacca actor Peter Mayhew (207K followers) tweeting about the Force4Fashion BB-8 and retweeting our response to him. And, “The Shadowhunters” actress Katherine McNamara (227K followers) tweeting a “thank you” to Kay for the Star Wars Charmed Memories bracelet she wore to the movie premiere.
      c. Force 4 Fashion

    6. Mother’s Day 2016
      a. “Chase” Commercial
      b. Mother’s Day 2015 Catalog

    7. Valentine’s Day 2016
      a. Valentine’s Day Catalog

    8. Additional Commercials
      a. “1919” Commercial
      b. “Brighter World” Commercial
      c. “For Everyone” Commercial
      d. “Newest C” Commercial
      e. “Symbols” Commercial

Visual Samples of Communications Strategy/Campaigns

Monica Rich Kosann


Social Media Brand Pages


Examples of Communications Strategy/Campaigns

The marketing & communication strategies for Monica Rich Kosann are built around the idea that every woman has a story to tell. Our lockets, charm necklaces, and poesy rings are among the core collections that allow women to capture their most important moments in a unique and personal way.

Also underlying our marketing campaigns are these brand dynamics:
  • All Monica Rich Kosann designs are created with one question in mind: Can a woman give this piece to her daughter in 20 years?
  • The brand works to balance a contemporary fashion sensibility with timeless elegance in both its product design and marketing. The result has been a growing 25-35 year old customer following that has become as strong as the brand’s established 50+ year old client base.

We bring these ideas together in all of our marketing campaigns.

On the advertising front we created a two tiered campaign of lifestyle imagery and heroic product/collection messaging in publications like Vogue, Harpers Bazaar, Elle, Town & Country and the Sunday NY Times. The same campaigns were also served digitally over a variety of platforms.

Our lifestyle campaign in 2015 was created with two fashion leaders in the digital space, Kelly Framel of the Glamourai & photographer Jamie Beck. We crafted a multi-generational campaign featuring women in both theirs 20’s and 60’s to reinforce the timelessness and broad appeal of the brand. In Spring of 2016 we went expanded the generations with photographer Grant Legan and celebrity stylist Michaela Erlanger, capturing women in their 20’s, 40’s and 60’s. This same messaging was ever present in our ongoing brand collateral and press outreach allowing us to see our jewelry styled by editors with celebrities across all ages ranging from Jourdan Dunn, Carrie Underwood, Lauren Conrad and Anna Kendrick to Diane Lane.

At the same time our product advertising campaigns communicated specific unique Monica Rich Kosann collections & individual styles, and we were fortunate to see many press placements throughout the year reinforcing these categories.

On a collection level, one other notable initiative was launched in late spring of 2016. For some time, customers have been using the locket personalization technology we created for our own web site to upload photos, quotations and personal notes that could then be printed at-home or in-store in the precise sizes required for their locket. In 2015-2016 we offered this technology to all of our retail partners to host on their own websites and create a uniquely co-branded customer experience. To reinforce this locket storytelling experience we created a #whatsinmylocket video using only original smartphone and go-pro real life footage that was served across all social and email platforms by us and our retail partners.

All of the above was further reinforced through extensive brand collateral, in store visuals and imagery, social media posts on our own brand channels and pre-designed posts for our retailers to use on their social channels.

Visual Samples of Communications Strategy/Campaigns

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