Sovereign urges young’uns to ‘take action’

Sovereign Insurance is encouraging young people to ‘take action’ through the launch of the next chapter of its ‘Life. Take charge’ brand campaign via J. Walter Thompson (JWT) in an effort to tap into the millennial market. However, the action taken in its latest spot is somewhat questionable.

The latest iteration of the campaign addresses low levels of insurance among the millennial market, and was created to combat everyday excuses, and empower Kiwis to take action by looking after their personal and financial well-being says Sovereign chief marketing and strategy officer Chris Lamers.

In the TVC a young woman throws her cell phone at the wall, chucks a glass bowl out of the window, and pours gasoline on a pair of pants and sets them on fire on the washing line.

So, you know, go on that dangerous mountain biking excursion you always dreamed of, sky dive, bungee jump, or as Sovereign’s selection of taglines say ‘take action’ and ‘you can do life your way’.

While campaign is clearly meant to be tongue in cheek, we can’t help but wonder how Sovereign would react if a considerable chunk of its audience took the message literally and started smashing their property in a bid to “take charge” (it would certainly make for some interesting insurance fraud lawsuits).

That said, reaching the millennial market can be tricky, and Sovereign is banking on the fact that its message premised on freedom will resonate with younger consumers.        

“We can always find a reason to not pursue the life we want, to not do the things we should, to not take action,” says Lamers.

“As humans we have this incredible ability to justify why we can’t do something, especially to ourselves. But taking action isn’t always easy, sometimes the things we know we should do don’t get done.”

Sovereign is urging people to procrastinate later, because action will always trump excuses, Lamers says. “Getting a plan in place, should the unexpected happen, is important no matter what your age, and our challenge is educating millennials on how life and health insurance is relevant to them and a significant part of planning for the future.”

JWT executive creative director Cleve Cameron says the challenge of the campaign was creating something that would stand out in the insurance category and establish Sovereign as a champion of action.

“The campaign is inspired by a quote from the writer and mountaineer, W. H Murray, who said ‘action has magic’. It was this thought that inspired the creative. The energy of the music is important and the gritty music video feel of the slow-mo black and white photography really brings the attitude of action to life.”

AMI Insurance also tried to win over young’uns in its recent campaign, challenging the stereotype that younger drivers are reckless behind the wheel.

AMI marketing and customer communications general manager Merran Anderson said earlier it was about giving young drivers a foot in the door when it came to getting insurance.  

“It’s very hard for them to understand what they need to do to get insurance and premiums have been really unaffordable for them. Often the average value of the car means that if you are paying $1,200 or $1,300 dollars for an insurance policy when the car is worth $2,000 then it’s just not viable which is a real shame.”

According to the Health Funds Association of New Zealand, more young people have been taking out health insurance.

A release from the organisation from July last year says New Zealanders aged 25-35 are taking out health insurance policies and the number of lives covered by health insurance rose 1,800 in the June quarter, bringing the total to 1.334 million New Zealanders or about 29 percent of the population.

In the 12 months to the end of June, there was an increase of more than 3,300 people aged 25-35 who took out policies, which HFANZ acting chief executive Christ Pentecost said was possibly attributable to the popularity of new, low-cost health insurance products aimed at the group.

Total claims paid amounted to $1.013 billion for the year ending June 30, 2015, up 4.8 percent on the previous June year.

Claims paid for the June quarter were $266 million, up 5.5 percent on the June 2014 quarter, the release says.

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