Car insurance is something that most people view as a necessary evil. So, when car insurance companies and other vendors take this necessary evil, and spin it as something fun (or at least an incentive for you to buy their product), it changes the complexion of the industry a bit. That’s where creative marketing comes into play.
In recent days, General Motors has teamed up with MetLife Auto to provide free car insurance for a year to buyers of GM products. This seems like a good deal for both companies. It gives car buyers a very real incentive to consider buying a GM-branded vehicle, and it brings an almost captive audience to MetLife Auto. Think about it. How many people really think about switching car insurance in order to save a few dollars? Not so many. So this promotion is a win-win for both companies, and also a great way for Washington and Oregon car buyers to save money on a year’s worth of car insurance.
Other companies have started to work the marketing angles, particularly when pitching to a younger, more computer savvy consumer demographic. iMingle, a subsidiary of insurer Unitrin Direct, was established with the goal of offering car insurance discounts in the social media space:
Launched in 2010, iMingle is a new marketing approach for direct-to-consumer insurance aimed at what the company calls the i Generation, those consumers who routinely turn to their social networks to find information, compare deals and seek recommendations from their peers.
It’s an interesting concept, and certainly creative. This “outside the box” approach to selling car insurance is catching on in several states where iMingle is licensed to provide coverage. Available discounts include a network discount of 10% if you are referred from a social media group of friends, deep discounts for paying the entire policy premium upfront, 5% just for going paperless in managing your account, and others.
PAYD and Creative Affinity Discounts
In Texas, MileMeter Insurance has taken the “pay as you drive” concept one step further. Rather than base an insurance premium on miles driven in a previous rating period, MileMeter offers its customers the ability to buy insurance by the mile – in other words, a customer would buy a 2500 mile policy rather than a 6 month or 1 year policy.
And Esurance, one of the fastest growing car insurance companies in the country, offers some interesting “affinity” discounts, as do other insurance providers. The catch: unless you ask, they generally won’t tell you about these discounts. While most auto insurance companies will provide affinity discounts for seniors that belong to a group such as AARP, did you know that Esurance will give you an affinity discount if you have a PayPal.com account? It’s true.
The bottom line is that the car insurance industry is a competitive marketplace. With more industry pressure to provide a competitively priced product, car insurance companies (and other businesses) are finding unique ways to market a product that everyone needs.