How can Rolex afford to ignore heritage and craftsmanship in all its advertising?

Having reached the ultimate saturation in terms of awareness of its heritage, history and craftsmanship, the 1 billion euro advertising spent over the past decade has reached a climax. Rolex advertising is all about lifestyle and performance – arts (opera, ballet) and sports (golf, sailing, tennis etc). The booming sales of the brand allow it not only to spend lavishly on all type of advertising, from TV ads, TV show sponsorship, outdoor, sports events, online etc.

Rolex ad in the early 1920s

But is there a long term potential fatigue? Yes ! – as consumers become more sophisticated and will be seeking a genuine luxury lifestyle.

One should consider that what ‘lifestyle’ means in the West, is all about shape and aesthetics – being THE most recognizable watch from a distance (whether genuine or a symbol). This has propusated Rolex at the top of luxury watch sales in less educated markets such as China or India, many consumers merely buying a Rolex based on the colour of gold and number of diamonds.

Oliver Petcu

Rolex 2013 ad, Oyster Perpetual Datejust