How Social Media has turned the watch industry upside down
pic courtesy of www.safety4sea.com
Back in the eighties/nineties when there was no internet, the only way to get info on the latest watches was through monthly or quarterly dedicated mags . They were thick almost biblical, beautiful and provided all the necessary info you needed to know about watches. The anticipation and the wait was part of the whole mystique and it was a relatively niche thing to be into . I loved it! There wasnt’t the hype there is now!
If you were someone trying to geek out, felt awkward, shy or just had other interests outside the norm, watches were an amazing escape that made it ok to like something else. It was highly immersive reading and forming your own opinions, talking with like minded people about them, while trying them on was the ultimate rush! It felt private yet connective and it was all some people needed to be a part of something .
Then, to actually find something you like and be able to buy it, not only said something about your style but much more without saying a word! It was subtle but right there on your wrist and in your face and unless you knew what it was, you wouldn’t have a clue. Those were the days!
Today, it’s crazy how social media has infiltrated and turned the watch industry upside-down! You can get the info as it happens with one click, no surprises, mostly fluff and hype for those who get off on showing the world what they have, it’s absolutely horrible! They know nothing about it or how it works in most cases. It’s purely a status symbol which has created this really annoying elitist mentality for the wannabe’s of this world!
The fun and anonymity has been taken away from something that used to be so personal. Sure it’s convenient that we don’t have to wait to get the info we want, but in retrospect I really miss that because it was something to look forward to.
The digital age has made wearing a nice watch much more difficult and dangerous today for some because anyone with a click of a button can find out what you are wearing in two secs. This suddenly makes you a target, not just in the US but around the globe, taking the enjoyment out of wearing them in the first place.
At the same time, it’s great that so many people are into watches being able to share wrist shots and thoughts for the world to see, but it’s just sad what it has become. I remember the days when I was in luxury watch retail and I would have great conversations with clients about watches and other interests, but it felt as though you were the only ones that mattered because it was in an intimate setting.
These social platforms are also partly responsible for creating the ridiculous demand and premiums for very iconic watches, making it almost impossible to buy them at retail. That dream watch will never become a reality for most because they are expensive to begin with but then to pay additional premiums up to 10x makes it completely out of reach!
In my opinion, if things continue to go the way they are, at some point it’s all going to implode because the smart and evolved people who have the money and influence are getting sick of this and at the end of the day it’s the people who make these brands what they are!
Some of these watch companies may have turned off the tap to regulate supply and manipulate the general public by controlling what they can and can’t get, but when the people pull the plug from buying, it could all end tomorrow !
Due to the unpredictable and volatile market on certain Rolex, Patek Philippe and Audemars Piguet watches, prices are subject to change.