Insurance.com has fun with viral video effort

SOLON, OH: Insurance.com, in conjunction with Optiem, has launched a viral video campaign that satirizes reality TV and the competitive prowess necessary to secure good insurance rates.

SOLON, OH: Insurance.com, in conjunction with Optiem, has launched a viral video campaign that satirizes reality TV and the competitive prowess necessary to secure good insurance rates.

The spoof series, "Reality Rejects," features fictional contestants, who have failed to get on mainstream reality programs, and are now competing to stay on this series. The parody's tag - "may the best win" - is a variation of Insurance.com's "may the best quote win" campaign.

"It's getting across that spirit of competition that is the essence of Insurance.com's brand," said Clyde Miles, chief strategist at Optiem. "[And,] obviously, we are trying to leverage the top-line awareness and incredible popularity of reality shows."

The effort targets the insurance industry's coveted demographic of 25- to 35-year-old females, but also dovetails the broader reality-show audience, he added.

Promotional efforts include new-media outreach through social forums like Facebook, MySpace, del.icio.us, and other online networking Web sites. Targeted pitches will also be sent to select industry titles and influential bloggers, Miles noted.

Though the agency built a MySpace page for one of its contestants, it plans to gauge viewer feedback to determine which characters to push further.

"The greatest thing about social media and online marketing is you can evolve on the turn of a dime, based on the metrics that you're getting back," said Vince Bank, an online PR specialist with Optiem.

The campaign will be measured on the number of Web hits and sales it generates.
"The tactical goal is to drive traffic, and, ultimately, for people to get quotes online from Insurance.com," Miles said.

"It's delivering entertainment value [that simply happens to be] brought to you by Insurance. com," Miles noted. "It's not hard-sell marketing."

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