Refreshing The Eternal The Platinum Story

Kay Garmeson
Platinum Guild International (PGI)
Peter Cooper
CRAM International
Richard Buchanan
Interbrand

INTRODUCTION

This case study shows how a multi-disciplinary team of client, research agency and branding agency used research to transform a product into adeeply meaningful brand. The specific case is Platinum, the precious jewellery metal. But the principles and processes involved apply to many other established products or brands faced with changing social trends and highly competitive alternatives, and which need to reappraise and express their fundamental positive essence to consumers and trade.

In brief, Platinum Guild International (PGI) promotes Platinum jewellery to the consumer and the trade worldwide. Platinum has always had a beguiling attraction, but in 2000, after a surge in sales during the 1980s and 1990s, Platinum was becoming vulnerable to a potential change in fashion from 'white' metal back to 'yellow', and to a substantial increase in the price of the raw material to almost twice that of Gold, its main competitor. Action was therefore required to develop a positioning and communication for Platinum that could resist fashion and price pressures, and truly express the distinctive values of one of the most precious and desirable metals in the world. PGI therefore embarked on a major international qualitative market research programme in its key markets of USA, China, Japan, India, Germany, Italy and UK. The result has been the development of the new and powerful rebranding of Platinum worldwide. The key elements are: