financial services

Aflac Explains What It Isn't

Supplemental insurance carrier Aflac is launching a brand campaign that seeks to explain what the financial services company doesn’t provide.

“Slimy Summer” from Publicis Seattle is part of the “Aflac Isn’t” campaign. It aims to demonstrate to consumers how Aflac’s products are different and more valuable than some might know.

Since introducing the Aflac Duck 19 years ago, brand recognition has grown to about 90%, says Shannon Watkins, Aflac vice president of brand and creative services.

“However, we found out through consumer research that many people don’t know exactly what Aflac does and offers,” Watkins tells Marketing Daily. “Many think Aflac is auto, home or property/casualty insurance. Telling people what ‘Aflac Isn’t’ is our hook: a way to stop people -- catch their attention -- to get them to think about their misperceptions of Aflac and engage them to learn what Aflac is: supplemental insurance.”

Besides the duck, the spot features green slime. 

“We want to ensure that all of our creative is relevant to the audience during the season in which they see it,” Watkins says. “During the summer, when children are out of school, families across America are constantly trying to find entertainment for their children. For years, slime has been a go-to option for parents looking for ‘edutainment.’ Yet, mishaps and messes often follow.”

The spot is designed to showcase that Aflac isn’t used when people think it’s used, while humorously incorporating slime as a key element that makes summer fun for children, and frustrating for adults, across the country.

The campaign is aimed at consumers ages 25-49 and their families. The media plan includes a variety of broadcast networks, focusing on prime-time and late-night shows, as well as digital media channels.

“The primary target for this campaign is consumers, but as with any integrated campaign, our message will reach many audiences -- including business owners, HR executives, agents and brokers,” Watkins says.

Research shows that the people with whom the company wants to connect share a love for music and music events. 

“We believe music gives Aflac a great opportunity to not only reach audiences with our educational message, but it’s also a great tool for creating relationships, which ultimately will help grow sales,” Watkins says. “We’re using our music platform to amplify our educational message by connecting directly with our target audience at music awards shows, music festivals and concerts throughout the year.”

The company is collaborating with four summer music festivals: Shaky Knees in Atlanta on May 3-5, BottleRock in Napa Valley, Calif. on May 24-26, Faster Horses in Brooklyn, Mich. on July 19-21 and KAABOO Del Mar in Del Mar, Calif. on Sept. 13-15.

At each festival, Aflac will host on-site experiential activations that will feature giveaways and activities, such as the Aflac Flock Spot, a central interactive hub for sharing in-the-moment music and content via social media.

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