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Taking Myself Too Seriously?

October 11, 2010

Chris Garlasco, Owner & Managing Partner - Founders Insurance Group

Over the past several months, I have really been pushing the topic of our value proposition with our staff. I really think that it’s important that we communicate to our customers and potential customers who we are and what it is that we do. We represent the interests of our clients by selecting the proper coverage from a large selection of insurance companies. We spend a lot of time making sure that we understand the most difficult and complex coverage needs of our clients. We make sure that while the price is right, we never sacrifice our integrity to save a few dollars. We are professionals and we take that role very seriously.

I was thinking about this as I was spending some time watching football games over the weekend. It seems that college and pro football games are a great vehicle for insurers to convey their messages. I wonder how those messages stack up against our value proposition. Esurance uses cartoons and people acting like robots. Progressive’s Flo gives you a price gun and tells you just to name your own price. Gieco uses lizards, woodchucks, and disco balls. Nationwide uses a silly man with a blue telephone in his coat pocket doing magic tricks. Allstate has a man called “Mayhem” pretending to be a “hot babe” jogging.

Am I taking myself too seriously? I am beginning to wonder. Have I just become jaded? Could insurance use a little humor? I suppose that a little humor can’t hurt. We have had several years of insurance carriers promising to save you hundreds of dollars over their competition that insurance has to move onto something else now that everyone has saved so much that the product is actually free! We have had lots of new gimmicks like getting a check back or a vanishing deductible that humor is the only place left to turn for some insurance companies. Do I laugh at some of these ads? In the presence of guests do I feign a sudden stomach cramp and run to the men’s room only to let out uncontrolled laughter? I guess the cats out of the bag, these ads are funny.

I like a good laugh just like everyone else. I just wonder if these ads are diminishing the value of what it is that we actually provide. Insurance is a product designed to help us afford something that we normally can’t afford on our own. It’s protection from financial devastation. We independent agents are focused on minimizing the cost of real life tragedy. That is no laughing matter. It won’t be a price gun, a disco ball or a magic trick that makes sure that financial devastation is avoided. It will be smart choices made by the consumer with the guidance of an agent that is beholden to no one but you.

I guess our value proposition is no laughing matter. Now what did I do with my rubber chicken?

Have a great day.

Chris Garlasco

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