Top 7 Insurance Commercials: #4 State Farm

Posted on April 30, 2014 and updated May 30, 2014 in Humour, Life Insurance Canada News 5 min read

After a closer look at the great ads of the Dutch Centraal Beheer insurance company, we’re heading back to our home continent. Let’s step into the second half of our Top 7 Insurance Commercials series and take a closer look at the commercials of none other than State Farm.

Love them or hate them, State Farm’s ads have the power to burrow into your brain and stick in there. The company has launched a wide variety of campaigns throughout its long history, and many of the ads followed the widely used pattern of unfortunate events leading up to the same fear-driven call to action.

This time, we’ve picked three commercials that don’t use this formula and that try to get your attention through other means.

The agent of the insurance company dancing with the client? That’s right. What’s not to like here? As this unusual pair dances their feet off to “Are You Ready For This,” we get to know how much money State Farm can save you. There are two things that are totally great about this video.

  1. The fact that they’re talking about something that sounds completely boring while they’re doing this awesome choreography is hilarious by itself. The best part, however, is that nobody even raises an eyebrow while they’re doing it.
  2. The insurance agent in the ad is a real State Farm agent! His name is John Harrell and he operates in the Chicago area. I wonder how many of his clients invited him to a ballgame after this commercial aired.

In this hilarious ad, State Farm again emphasizes how much money you save on your insurance when you buy their policies — in this case by showing you all the silly little dreams you could fulfil with the saved money. Our personal favourites are the main character’s very own falcon, the leather armour a man is wearing before the end, and a gigantic chewing gum dispenser you can see in the background.

We like that this ad shows a ridiculous alternative reality with superb production and a great deal of creativity. This ad does a good job of highlighting the value of the money you save, so in general, you could use the idea in almost any industry. What we don’t like is the fact that it’s so goofy that most people will miss the actual message after a quick laugh.

If you’ve ever thought about what to do when it’s 3:00 in the morning and you can’t fall asleep, this ad implies that you can call State Farm and get yourself a nice insurance policy. You can also be very secretive about it, so it might lead your wife to thinking you’re cheating on her.

However, as ridiculous as this scenario might be, it still effectively promotes an interesting option for people who just can’t pick up the phone during regular working hours.


Summary

When it comes to State Farm’s easy-going and funny campaign, from the insurance marketing point of view, there’s not much to actually persuade you to shop for a policy. On the other hand, if you already are shopping for one — and a funny commercial can be a good reminder that you should — this can be a strong incentive for many people to choose State Farm.

What we don’t like about these ads is that they operate on the basic principle that everyone needs insurance — regardless of the fact that they don’t.

The logic behind these stories is that small tangible incentives tend to attract people when they shop for very intangible products, such as insurance policies, bank accounts, or credit cards. Banks regularly do this by offering special-edition credit card designs et cetera. This approach is also a very creative way to remind you that the extra money means extra happiness — however cheap that might sound.

All these ads are great and have two good things in common:

  1. They all defy the well-known “catastrophe, impact, solution (through insurance)” routine.
  2. They’re all aimed at men, depicting their problems or things they like and what they consider cool or entertaining.
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