Why do men give women a diamond ring when they propose?
When my wife and I were discussing marriage before we were engaged I suggested that an onion ring would be a better gift to receive because it’s a ring and a meal all in one. She didn’t go for it and in the end I went the traditional route.
But where did the tradition come from? Well back around 1871 there was a diamond rush in South Africa. Suddenly the market was flooded with diamonds. A group of diamond companies got together to set up a cartel known as the De Beers cartel. To this day, they control over 90% of the world’s diamonds.
They can push the price up by controlling the number of diamonds in the market place.
In 1947 a young copywriter working for N.W. Ayer & Son coined an advertising line ‘A diamond is forever’ and in 2001 it was voted the best advertising slogan of the 20th century. The tradition of giving a diamond ring to a loved one as a sign of commitment was dreamt up by the advertisers.
Diamond prices are controlled by the people who supply the diamonds in the first place. And what happens when something is considered rare? We want it all the more.
This is the sales principle of scarcity on a global scale!
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