Direct Line selects Fodor for on-line PR campaign

Direct Line, the biggest motor insurer in the UK, has appointed Fodor Wyllie Associates on substantial six-figure fees to manage PR activity for its recently launched on-line service, directline.com.

Direct Line, the biggest motor insurer in the UK, has appointed

Fodor Wyllie Associates on substantial six-figure fees to manage PR

activity for its recently launched on-line service, directline.com.



Fodor Wyllie will report to Direct Line’s corporate affairs head, Chris

Wermann. The account was awarded after a three-way pitch.



According to Wermann, the PR programme will have two strands, involving

a mainstream consumer campaign focusing on how quickly insurance can be

purchased on-line, and a corporate awareness campaign to raise the

profile of Direct Line as a commentator within the e-commerce arena.



The directline.com arm was launched in September by Direct Line’s

in-house PR team, headed by Wermann. ’The launch gained good coverage,

but the continuing work is too much for an in-house team and we don’t

have the contacts to run campaigns,’ he said.



Since the launch of Direct Line’s on-line quote and buy service for its

motor, rescue and home insurance products, the site has received over

seven million page impressions, and around 540,000 one-off visitors, and

provided 135,000 quotations.



’We will focus on differentiating directline.com from the standard

services that only offer quotes by e-mail or a follow up telephone

call,’ said Fodor Wyllie managing director Grace Fodor.



The agency’s brief covers public affairs, conferences, media relations,

sponsorship, and promotions for both on- and off-line media.



Direct Line is investing pounds 2 million in e-commerce marketing and PR

activity for the first three months of 2000.



Its marketing roster includes advertising agency Mortimer, Whittiker,

O’Sullivan, media buying agency MediaCom TMB and on-line media buying

agency Media Vision Integrated.



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