Who ever thought GEICO would be considered a “trendsetting brand”? We’re talking about car insurance, right? Last year, Forbes cited GEICO ads as part of the 100 things that makes America great. And that’s only one of the achievements that’s resulted from Martin’s groundbreaking work for the brand How did this happen?
The secret to the campaign.
The secret is in the way we layer the GEICO campaign. Conventional campaigns call for one storyline and sticking to it. We threw convention to the wind and instead focused on 6 unique storylines, or layers, each with its own differentiating message. The campaigns run simultaneously, which keep the ideas fresh and the messages focused.
The storyline centered around the following elements:
- Humanity: America’s favorite gecko
- Ease of use: “So Easy a Caveman Can Do It.”
- Savings: “There’s an easier way to save money...”
- Fast: “In the time takes...
- Call to action:"Everything you love about GEICO. Now mobile”
The six layers.
There have been six layers to The Martin Agency’s 18-year-long year relationship with GEICO and the resulting campaigns. Here’s brief rundown:
LAYER 1: "I'M A GECKO. NOT GEICO."
The Gecko stepped into the insurance and pop-culture spotlight because GEICO needed a human connection to its potential customers and a way to help them get the darn company name right.
LAYER 2: IT'S SO EASY A CAVEMAN CAN DO IT.
In 2004, GEICO tasked The Martin Agency’s creative team with driving traffic to its easy-to-use website. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, the Cavemen have been come among the most recognizable spokesmen in the insurance category and in advertising in general.
LAYER 3: THERE'S AN EASIER WAY TO SAVE MONEY.
After the recession hit, we noticed that people are willing to go to extremes when it comes to saving money. We developed an entire campaign to tell people that there’s an easier way to save money. Switching to GEICO.
LAYER 4: "IN THE TIME IT TAKES..."
This campaign offered new humorous variations on an old GEICO commercial formula that used the phrase ‘‘In the time it takes . . .’’ For example, a husband was asked by his wife, who was modeling a new dress, ‘‘Does this make me look fat?’’ Half listening, he replied, ‘‘You betcha.’’ The voice-over then commented, ‘‘In the time it takes you to pull out the sofa bed, you could save 15 percent or more.’’
LAYER 5: EVERYTHING YOU LOVE ABOUT GEICO. NOW MOBILE.
Because of the changing technological landscape, we know consumers expect to interact with brands anytime, anyhow, anywhere. Bearing that in mind, we helped GEICO redesign its mobile experience with a revamped user experience and a whole new look and feel. And once the app went live, we helped GEICO spread the word.
LAYER 6: GEICO. REAL SERVICE. REAL SAVINGS.
GEICO wanted us to use customer testimonials. Real people telling real stories is a tired solution and celebrity endorsements are a dime a dozen. But when we paired B-, C- and D-list celebs like Little Richard and Charo with GEICO customers, the result? relatable testimonials with a self-deprecating slant!
Pop Culture Salience Drives Business Results.
- GEICO Brostache app was in Mashable’s Awards Finalists and to date, has been downloaded over 2.7 million times.
- GEICO is the fastest-growing insurance company in the industry
- Ranks #1 in new-customer acquisition and is the only top brand in its category to achieve double-digit growth (13.1%) during the past four years
- #1 most trendsetting brand for men 25–34 (VW and Apple were #2 and #3, respectively) in a recent ESPN study
- 20% higher brand recall, 32% higher message recall and 20% higher likability than the insurance industry’s top three major competitors (source: IAG)
- The GEICO Gecko and Cavemen have each been named Ad Age’s Icon of the Year
- In a study done for ESPN, GEICO was cited as the most trendsetting brand among men 25–34. Ad Age interviewed the GEICO Gecko for the first-ever icon podcast. And both our Gecko and Cavemen have trumped the Michelin Man, Tony the Tiger and the Aflac Duck to be named “Icon of the Year.”
- The Cavemen AND Gecko secured two of ten spots on Forbes’s “Most Loved Spokes-creatures of 2007” list, over Tony the Tiger, the Energizer Bunny and Chester the Cheetah
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