Who wants to volunteer and take on the new insurance account?

Speaking for EMEA country, no fingers will be raised and little to no excitement is to be expected from creatives when it comes to insurance marketing.

Insurance companies are believed to consist of boring bureaucrats, hopelessly lost on the square side and of no opportunity to sharpen your creative profile.

Something went wrong with the mindset of European creatives and needs adjustment and transformation. We are utterly trained to resolve issues no matter what.

A couple years ago, I returned to Frankfurt empty handed from an Allianz insurance pitch in Munich, a not so frequent incident, I must ad in my defense. I was with zentropy then, now MRM Worldwide and in retrospect, I’d say fair enough.

Being a sucker at failure, I researched learnings from US insurance companies and have come across an astonishing psychological finding. With buying insurance, people want to cut a deal with the devil, a bit of horse-trading by which, bad things are prevented from happening with making the purchase.

© Thomas Bröse, Berlin


Motivation for purchasing insurance


Preventing bad things from happening with the purchase of insurance.


Getting reimbursed in case of damage.


Two topics, that should get the creative juices flow, for there are great stories to tell as this example of an Adweek ad of the day comes to show for State Farm insurance.

An entry on Amsterdam Ad Blog, made me wonder, why no agency with an insurance company in their portfolio has wrapped their minds around an authentic testimonial approach, by which people get to tell their story: How they emerged unscathed from fate in blogger style.

With so many unfortunate, yet curiously strong catastrophes happening around the world, an insurance company will likely take on the role of the guardian angel and savior with current real time events of magnitude as long as the brand stays subtly in the background as an enabler and curator for true stories to get told and talked about in the new world.

Dolly Rogers, an ad agency in Amsterdam published a blog, portraying citizens of Amsterdam, one at a time. This way Dolly Rogers gets talked about and gains popularity (without necessarily having to show off client wins and great work).


Spinnin Yarns by Dolly Rogers, Amsterdam


To escape without a scratch

With an authentic testimonial campaign consisting of consolidated and curated empiric reports, including a small demographic, illustrating fact and figures to prove the case, and dialogue unfolding between insurants and family/friends having withnessesed the insurance case and outcome, the insurance company establishes an account of lively case studies in the new world. Exciting true stories told by the insurant. Rolled out in collaboration with help organizations, the effort could raise funds, even for the not insured victim of circumstance.

An excellent and most exciting example to help you get your hands around this observation, can be found here and here.

The insurant themselves manage their blog entries and responds to comments with the help of social media practitioners assigned by the agency.


The insurance company gets into the conversation as an increasingly appealing, popular figure.


Trust in the insurance company is gained or returned organically and is strengthened by supporting figures and fact.


Empiric report as building blog for the new international marketing strategy
© Allianz insurance

New international Allianz insurance campaign

The new campaign is centered around the viewpoint of the customer on behalf of the Allianz performance and its 10.000 representatives, a press statement declares on their corporate website.

A close call to my observations, allas a far cry… Grey, their agency has chosen to deliver good old in your face advertising, rather than relying on authenticity, transparency and access as key attributes for good social engagement to bring the magic back.

With their new campaign, Allianz fails to deliver on my observations and misses out on the drama unfolding in the new world. No reasons to believe any of this, are being given.

Empiric reports can be viewed as videos here and are perceived as what they are: adfilms.Testimonials are no longer being delivered as empty promises, dear Christian Deuringer (in charge of marketing). Experience must be shared to be relevant and trustworthy. Grey has been dragging their feet and delivered advertising messages for the old world while we are living in the new world with exciting opportunities for participation marketing and amazing things to talk about.

Have a look here, at how 3 BBH interns raised $24,000 to help 89 year old barber after his livelihood was devastated by recent unrests in London. You’ll get the idea.