Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The best way to insure success?

Geico breaks just about every rule of marketing. From running multiple campaigns at once to featuring characters like cavemen, pitchmen, lizards, and pigs that seem to be designed to do nothing other than annoy.

Typically brands are rewarded for consistency, "likeability," relevance and differentiation. Well, Geico is definitely different.

While Allstate continues to use Dennis Haysbert, State Farm focuses on its agents, and Progressive continues to foist the well coifed Flo upon us, Geico flits around using each character to highlight a specific product or brand attribute.

I don't love the pig. I don't love the caveman. I'm okay with the Gecko. And the new rescue panther spot is funny.

This schizophrenia must be working for them because they keep doing it. But what does it say about advertising for insurance when I dumped Geico last year for The Hartford, a brand whose advertising is so low key I couldn't remember a single spot, because of their AARP discount?

1 comment:

  1. Harvey: was just having this conversation with a client this morning! I think the reason Geico has resorted to funny (some would indeed call it ridiculous) and somewhat irrelevant advertising to promote its brand is because it lacks any other REAL way to differentiate itself in the discount/low-price auto insurance space (same reason Progressive created Flo). It doesn't have any significant and meaningful brand attributes that it can build from (not to say there aren't any, they have chosen not to develop any). When you ask most people what the Geico brand stands for, the answer is usually whatever character they've featured in their ads...what a way to be thought of and remembered as a brand!