'90s R&B makes everything easier to handle, right? In this episode of "What Were They Thinking?" Melissa shares the latest iteration of GEICO's "It’s What You Do" campaign, starring Boyz II Men delivering less than delightful news.

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  • Brian Wagner

    In response to Melissa’s latest installment on Geico…
    You are right and raise good points about their creative approach which does stand out in the crowded auto insurance marketplace.

    As a marketer in the pharmaceutical healthcare vertical I found this spot with Boyz II Men a brilliant satire to a FDA fair balance requirement for Pharma product ads.

    Years ago Nissan’s agency executed a brilliant ad campaign for the launch of the then new Nissan Versa using the pharmaceutical TV ad format.

    • Melissa Ward

      Thanks for watching Brian! And obviously, the “fun” creative needs to be in line with the brand and its messaging … and GEICO has clearly mastered that (for years). Maybe we can’t all be GEICO from the starting gate, but I think marketers can learn to loosen up a little (especially those in less than glamorous industries).

  • Douglas Kelly

    There is no doubt that Geico has great creative and “fun” spots. They have become iconic. I enjoy them as much as you seem to. They’re brilliant.

    But do you have a Geico insurance policy? No? Why not?

    Well, I don’t have one either because not a person I know who has had a Geico insurance policy has ever collected on a claim without a monumental struggle. They simply do not like to pay claims. But of course, Geico (which originally stood for Government Employees Insurance Company) was purchased as it was going out of business by Warren Buffett for a fire sale price, just as he buys other companies.

    I realize this has little to do with the advertising itself, which is your subject, but the nature of a company that commercializes and sells anything in the marketplace is always germane.

    The cute ads they foist on us do indeed work well. And of course the 15% discount is a sucker’s bait. So the game is played out and Buffett makes a fortune (insurance is a very lucrative business) which he uses to finance his purchases of new investments. Possibly one reason the claim payments are so slow or non-existent. Geico is Buffett’s honey pot.

    • Melissa Ward

      I do, actually!

      • Douglas Kelly

        Pity. I hope you never have a claim. Good Luck

        • Small_Businessman

          I don’t – but last year I was in an accident with someone who did (cosmetic damage only). It was her fault, and I had no problem with Geico. I called them on Monday and they scheduled me for an estimate on Friday. They gave me a check which covered the entire amount on the spot.
          I actually had more problems with my insurance company bugging me about it. They were trying to help, but couldn’t understand I had it under control and didn’t need their help.
          Maybe it was because the other driver was at fault, but I found Geico quite good at paying my claim.

          • Douglas Kelly

            This is good. It seems they have changed their ways from the past 5 or so years. I heard quite a few horror stories about collecting on claims. Possibly they had a lot of complaints through their state’s insurance commissioners that they had to do a better job in compliance.
            Whatever the reason, I’m glad they’ve turned around.

  • Wayne Brown

    I thought this was a Direct Marketing magazine? this is brand advertising trash. Geico’s commercials are entertaining sure, but they give NO reason to get a quote now, or drive home any real benefits in any of their advertising.

    Granted, car insurance is a commodity, but Geico and Farmers have some of the worst ads in my opinion. Funny with no real purpose or offer, other than “get the brand out there”.

    I’ve seen better commercials that at least open people up to the possibility of switching from Liberty mutual and others by focusing on quick claim processing, and the easy quote process without having to fill out mortgage documentation.

    I truly believe their creative sucks. Branding for the sake of branding is a waste… it has to be tied to some type of offer that is appealing or what’s the point? Spending 3 million so people see your logo?