The Progressive ‘Box’ Steals Flo’s Spotlight
The Progressive Insurance Box identifies itself as “Progressive Insurance,” which is apparently the policy itself delivering important details in a hard sell, direct-response kind of way. The insurance box might be outshining Flo in terms of advertising and is voiced by Chris Parnell of Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock fame.
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UPDATED: Jun 28, 2022
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If you don’t know who “Flo” is, you don’t know jack. But seriously, she is quite easily one of the top 10 most recognizable female company mascots out there today.
In the insurance world, she’s the second most recognizable mascot, after the GEICO gecko, which hails from…
She beats out men in the insurance world too, like the ever-popular Allstate Mayhem man.
And there’s even a section of Progressive’s website dedicated to how to “dress like Flo,” including the ability to purchase the “official costume.”
But now she’s got company in the form of an inanimate object, which should be appearing on your “telly” in coming weeks and months.
Beware the Progressive Box
Who could possibly usurp Flo’s position you ask? A talking box of course!
But not just any box. The “Box” identifies itself as “Progressive Insurance,” which is apparently the policy itself.
You might remember the boxes from other Progressive commercials, where Flo passes them out to confused customers after they purchase a policy at her make-believe checkout stand.
In one spot, the Box actually sends a shot out to Flo, who is seen holding the Box in another commercial.
The idea behind the new campaign, per Advertising Age, is to let the Box “do the talking,” and sell the details, instead of making Flo into a shameless saleswoman.
Put simply, Flo is supposed to remain the happy-go-lucky, quirky friend, while the Box delivers important details in a hard sell, direct-response kind of way.
Oh, and the Box is voiced by Chris Parnell of Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock fame, the latter in which he plays Dr. Spaceman (Spa-CHE-Man).
So you can’t really lose – it delivers a stronger message while remaining silly, absurd, and non-threatening, which seems to be the way forward these days in advertising.
The Box is also joined by “The Messenger,” which was introduced a short while back. He’s the “cool” transient guy that shows up randomly and helps people save money on their insurance.
His most recent spot shows him handing out Progressive’s Snapshot device to passing drivers, explaining that they shouldn’t have to pay more for other bad drivers.
While all these ads might be cool and entertaining, they aren’t free, or cheap. The money has to come from somewhere, so going with a big spending insurer might not result in the cheapest policy.
That said, be sure to shop around with all types of insurers, including those that don’t have cool mascots and million-dollar ad campaigns.
An independent agent can do the legwork for you, and hey, you might be pleasantly surprised with what they find. Believe it or not, there are a ton of HUGE insurance companies out there that you’ve never heard of. And they provide the same level of service, or much better, than the more notorious ones.
Read more: 10 Ways to Lower Your Car Insurance Premium