Thursday, February 04, 2010

AXA launches motor insurance brand with 'pavement rage' ad

AXA is launching a £10m marketing campaign to support the launch of its new direct motor insurance product targeting older drivers. This is AXA’s first foray into the direct insurance. Previously it had focused on the broker market.

I am quoting from Brand Republic that: “AXA Car Insurance will target older drivers who feel they are not catered for by other brands, by offering them a 90% no claims bonus.”

The TV ad shows pedestrians bashing into one another on a busy city-centre
pavement. A voiceover then states, ‘You wouldn't behave this way on foot, so why would you when you are driving?'

The tagline for the campaign is: ‘AXA drivers get up to 90% discount on their car insurance. Disrespectful drivers don't.'

In parallel TV celebrity Charley Boorman (who you might ask is he) will front a PR push, including a website inviting consumers to air their views on the state of behaviour on the road today. How weird.

As you will see from the ad, the big punch line for Axa is - Redefining Standards. I mean, that is going to really get grampa out of his seat and punching the air.

Some obvious observations. This is a covert campaign that selects the older age group on the basis of their long driving record without a claim. I can see the strength in that argument. So unlike RIAS there is no mention of 50+ or anything to do with age.

But, my hunch is that by making the creative so confrontational – literally – the message about 90% discount is going to get lost. I am still thinking about attractive oriental looking lady, the short guy and the lunatic looking women.

And, one thing that older people (who I wonder do they mean as older) tend not to like is confrontation and aggression (yep, I know a bit generalisation). I think a lot of people will have switched off their engagement with the ad before it gets the thing that really matters – money off their insurance.

I guess the smug looking George Clooney lookalike is the visual anchor to the 'older' person.

Sorry guys. I reckon it’s a lemon. What do you think? Dick Stroud


Steelmagnolia said...

What a ridiculous advert, can't see how anyone could like the ad and that is the key to engagement!Janet at Steel Magnolia

Unknown said...

AXA are faced with the age old problem faced by major brands in the financial services industry. The AXA brand needs to appeal to a wide range of age groups and customer segments in Consumer and B2B markets. AXA are therefore restricted in their ability to focus their advertising more openly on an age group in say, Motor Insurance for fear of alienating potential customers for their other product groups. This leads them to focus on 'experience' in their proposition.
From my research the target age group definitely feel that their experience should be rewarded. Will 'experience' work better than 'Over 50?' as a means of getting their attention however? Probably not. Would it work in addition to 'Over 50?'? Definitely.
As to the Ad execution. I've learned over the years that the age group prefer a more literal analogy than the bumping pedestrians but it certainly makes you sit up.

Hein Kuiper
Heinsight International