Invicta Watches: Lowering the Average I.Q. of Humanity One Watch at a Time
Amazon.com web page for an Invicta 11660 Coalition Forces Trigger Rose Gold Plated Men's Watch (No Straps)
Huh?

Poking around on Amazon.com, I got sidetracked browsing some truly horrid-looking watches, and came across the most meaningless marketing fluff I've ever seen, for any product, anywhere.

The product description has four beefy sentences barely able to contain all 576 words, yet not weighted down by even the slightest actual fact or hint of useful information:

Product Description

Covert operations are revealed as Invicta's stealth Coalition Forces Collection steps into the fore.

Conditioned to handle the most sophisticated of endeavors, the Coalition Forces are at the ready, available for the day-to-day maneuvers to come.

Strategically prepared for all operatives, this technically deft collection is crafted with Swiss movements and emboldened with the attributes of true leadership.

Invicta's Coalition Forces Collection reaches the front line with the command, range and tactics for decisive action, turning time into a multi-faceted vision quest.

A vision quest indeed. Not knowing ahead of time what this was describing, I think many would be hard pressed to realize it's supposed to be about a watch. Swiss movements is perhaps a good hint, but it could just as easily get lost in the context of their testosterone-driven direct-to-cable military theme.

If you did realize it's about a watch, you'd be forgiven if you thought Swiss movements was a relevant fact that had somehow slipped in, but no, it's a quartz (battery/electronic) watch.

I guess this all follows the old saying: If you can't say something nice, make up a bunch of irrelevant, meaningless crap. Or something like that. It's so much worse than the Nikon D4 Marketing Fluff I wrote about a couple of years ago.

Anyway, I have such compensation issues that I would have bought one just to associate myself with its virile product description, but alas, it's not eligible for Amazon Prime, and I don't buy things that aren't eligible for Amazon Prime.

(In seriousness, who on earth writes this kind of crap, and more importantly, who on earth is actually swayed by it?)

I still don't know what the (No Straps) in the product title refers to. Maybe it's a typo for (No Facts)?


All 16 comments so far, oldest first...

Go with these folks instead: http://www.blancpain.ch A beautiful little company where each staff member has his or her own garden plot and is welcome to go out and work in the garden for part of the day… They not only hand make some of the most exquisite and finest watches and watch movements in the world, if necessary the crafts people will make their own specialized tools to make and assemble the watches.

Mike
(BC, Canada)

— comment by Mike Nelson Pedde on July 10th, 2014 at 1:40pm JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

I have to agree that some Invicta watches would indeed scare small children.

After reading the description, I’d feel inadequate if I owned that watch and ate anything other than raw meat, and drank my whiskey straight from the bottle.

I am fond however, of judging a book by its cover and have from time to time(see what I did there?) considered purchasing an Invicta that was a bit less ostentatious. But none really moved me enough to pull the trigger.

If you ever do find yourself in the market for a timepiece that is substantial, and of good quality, I would reccomend the Bulova 96B175 Precisionist. I’ve had mine for a couple weeks and have only good things to say about it.

What I’m looking for doesn’t seem to be made, unfortunately. I want a large face (45mm+) but thin, with a simple classic look that tells you the time and maybe the date, and nothing else. I don’t want it to look like it’s made from surplus submarine parts or a tank turret. “Understated class” would be the marketing phrase for it. James Bond could wear it with his tux or some jeans, but not while scuba diving or race driving. —Jeffrey

— comment by Ray on July 10th, 2014 at 2:01pm JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

Calvin Klein makes a 44m plain analog-look metal watch along the lines of what you describe, model number is K4M21146. It doesn’t have any of the fancy (and distracting) chronograph or diving features. Another brand to look into is Movado (they have a lot of simple-faced watches in their lines). Movado TC comes to mind but it’s smaller than your criteria (only 40mm).

Thanks for the tip about the Calvin Klein… the black version (K4M211C3) is close, but not quite there. I saw a Fossil FS4851 the other day and it’s much closer to what I’m looking for, but just a bit too casual. Movado seems out because I want the numbers around the face of the dial. I’ve been looking for a long time, and once did see something that was pretty much what I wanted, but it was thousands of dollars and I don’t feel that way about a watch. A combination of what I think about style and value probably just doesn’t exist. —Jeffrey

— comment by Anna M on July 10th, 2014 at 5:46pm JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

Screw the marketing, at a saving of $1,296.01 from the retail price, anyone would be dumb not to get one!

— comment by Tiago on July 10th, 2014 at 6:29pm JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

No straps means you’re paying for just the “watch” and not a “watch plus strap”.

You’d think, but the picture shows an integrated strap, and the description talks about the clasp, so it’s not at all clear to me. It likely means no additional bands, but who knows.—Jeffrey

— comment by Derek on July 10th, 2014 at 7:22pm JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

perhaps the dimensions you require are demanding , but when I will the lottery it will be Patek Philippe … failing that another Longines (the 1st watch I bought my wife and still her favourite) Both brands excel at meeting the understated class requirement . The latter on real world budget. Nice suggestion from Mike. I suspect they are on the upper middle of my suggestions.

— comment by Paul M on July 10th, 2014 at 7:46pm JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

Awesome post. I’d love to hear from someone who actually writes this stuff.

I’d agree with Paul about Longines. They have elegant throwback designs that I like – and it’s easy to tell the time. I have an Olympic that I like quite a bit.

Whatever you decide, I hope you are emboldened with the attributes of true leadership. And bacon.

— comment by Michael on July 11th, 2014 at 2:21am JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

At 49mm this is the largest formal-ish watch I know: http://www.omegawatches.com/collection/seamaster/aqua-terra-150-m/xxl-small-seconds/23113491006001

It’s a bit more casual than I was thinking, but is still very nice. But it’s almost $100 per each of those 49mm, so a bit more than I want to spend on any watch. —Jeffrey

— comment by Damien on July 11th, 2014 at 3:40am JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

I’m not sure what would be “thin” for you, but have you looked at the Khaki series from Hamilton? I received a Khaki Officer Mechanical several years ago and I really like it. One of these days, I’m going to get myself another one from the series. Heres’ the link – http://goo.gl/Zo6B45

Some nice watches there, thanks… I like their sense. —Jeffrey

— comment by Hajime on July 11th, 2014 at 8:20am JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

When I see marketing mumbo jumbo like what you’ve pointed out for Invicta I get really mad because I take it as a personal insult to my intelligence. I started noticing this type of thing about 5-8 years ago with a TV add by, I think, Old Navy or maybe on of its sister companies. They were promoting their performance fleece. They never said how it performed or what if performed. We were just supposed to realize it was better than a fleece because it was a performance fleece. The other marketing tool that bugs me is use of the word Pro. I noticed this trend starting a few years ago with video and photo editing software then spreading tools and clothing of all sorts and hair care products. No mention of why all of a sudden the product is now considered Pro or what that means. The really sad thing is that now I am seeing a lot of nothing in news articles, primarily on the web but also local TV news stories were they will spend 60 seconds or two paragraphs and tell you no more than what was in the headline. Thanks for a forum to vent. 🙂 David – St. Louis, Mo USA

— comment by David on July 11th, 2014 at 1:51pm JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

“Daniel Wellington” is a brand (Swedish, I believe) that makes large-ish, flat quartz watches with “NATO” straps. They’re popular here as fashion watches.

I have a Citizen “Nighthawk” that I’m quite fond of, but it has a plethora of detailing that you may not be a fan of, including a slide rule bezel: http://tmblr.co/ZyENby1CeKWdA

If you want to find a new hobby to sink your time and money into, watch nerdery is just the thing. I recommend http://ablogtowatch.com as a starting point for watches of all shapes and pricing.

— comment by Gustaf on July 11th, 2014 at 10:43pm JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

I’m fond of the Citizen Attesa lineup, which generally have useful tech-y features (hardcoated titanium and sapphire crystals) along with ideas to make your life easier (self-setting atomic time, solar power). They do tend to run a little small, though — thin and light, but not a huge diameter, looking at the ATD53-2846 here, it’s only 39.5mm.

Another thought would be the now-discontinued Omega Railmaster, although having a ringing endorsement from Jeremy Clarkson might not be the most positive endorsement.

— comment by Mike on July 12th, 2014 at 2:18am JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

At an upscale department store in Downtown Kyoto for some minor shopping this evening, I stopped by the watch department with a lot of exotic brands. It seems to me that the more expensive, the least attractive. There were a couple of Patek Philippe watches in the $85,000 range that were unappealing, but at least not gaudy. Most of the watches in the $10,000-$50,000 range were either ridiculously gaudy or K-mart dull. Hamilton and Omega had some sort-of-appealing watches in the $500 range, but the whole trip confirmed that what I’m looking for is not what most people who buy watches are looking for.

— comment by Jeffrey Friedl on July 15th, 2014 at 11:47pm JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

With the dimensions you’ve specified you might want to consider reverse-importing a watch from the States. I wasn’t able to find these using my (admittedly faulty) search skills on the Citizen Japan site, but the price in the US is pretty reasonable (<US$200) and the size is large-ish but unfortunately perhaps not large enough (43mm):

AW1361 (also available with a black strap)
AO9030

Based on your description I think you’re looking for what’s commonly termed a “military” or “aviator” watch, which typically has high-contrast markings and numbers all around.

Those are indeed nice, but my image is a bit more plain and refined. But yeah, high contrast… dark face, white hands. These have a sweep seconds hand, which is nice; yesterday at the store I noticed that the sweep seconds hand seems to have disappeared… they’re all separate little dials now, if at all. I don’t need a seconds hand on a watch, but I like the looks of one. —Jeffrey

— comment by Mike on July 16th, 2014 at 7:40am JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

HAve a look at this one. Great watches!

http://www.victorinoxwatches.com/en/timepieces/alliance/

Colin

I definitely noticed this brand at the store the other day… some of the nicest designs I saw, and a bargain at 1/150th the price of the more expensive pieces. You’ve got to laugh at their website marketing drivel, though… here’s a snippet from one of their other lines: “A deliciously feminine scent hovers over the Victorinox collection for women, named after the founder’s mother. Like a sparkling jewel, this beautiful watch more usually found in a 28 mm diameter has now succumbed to the allure of 32 mm.“. Ugh. —Jeffrey

— comment by Colin on July 17th, 2014 at 1:21am JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

Hilarious post! I’m a regular reader of you blog and have commented once in the past (I think), but I just had to write to let you know that I was laughing out load reading the product descriptions and then your follow up comments. Really added to my day! Thanks!

— comment by Garin on July 23rd, 2014 at 2:43am JST (3 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink
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