Hit ‘Em Where It Hurts
Bill, that is what I have been hoping to see sooner than later: these kinds of Life ads in movie theaters. It would be even better if it were done by the Life Foundation and not just one company. I have often wondered when someone would step up and do a Super Bowl ad, but it would be a tough proposition at a hefty price tag. How could you ever manage to convey this message in 30-60 seconds? The theater is the perfect setting and it is long overdue. If we in the industry got together and converted our efforts we could make this a reality by next summer. I think we should use the same Thai production companies that put out these ads.
Uh, yes… this is life. People don’t buy life insurance for what it is; they buy it for what it does. Life Value 101. We should put all this asset under management stuff on the shelf a bit and sell more of it. Love the ads.
Salt Lake City, UT
These ads are ruthlessly exploitative, and their days are likely numbered even in Asia. Modern consumers are not shamed into buying things (although it seems to work with voters.)
There’s nothing wrong with an intense ad, if it portrays an individual experience. These ads portray a class/group experience, because they rely on gender and class roles to make their point. And though these companies are clearly appealing to fathers/caregivers etc., they are intensely alienating females/the young/etc., who are being portrayed as vulnerable, emotionally fragile, etc.
People should buy more life insurance, sure, but maybe it should be made easier to buy, without lining out the medically challenged, those with bad credit, or low education.
New York, NY
I believe that too many life agents have become ashamed of the perceived stigma of being a life insurance agent. Now titles such as Advisor, Financial Planner, Financial Consultant, etc., have replaced the self descriptive of what we really do.
I have included a picture that is near and dear to my heart. It is one of the few pictures I have of my son-in-law Chris holding my grandson shortly after he was born. Unfortunately, Chris was killed 10 months later when an IED exploded under his Humvee in Iraq. It is easy to tell which Thai commercial reminded me of this.
This is what life insurance really is about. Not taxes or investments or any of the other pretty packages we wrap it in. It’s about people.
Thanks for sharing that. I say walk proud and call yourself a life insurance agent…who does a lot of other stuff too.
Gregory F. Weaver
Somebody Has To Say It
Thank you for the consistently helpful information you provide in the National Underwriter. In addition, thank you for sharing your thoughts on the weaknesses of the major rating agencies–S&P in particular.
I regret to say that I disagree with your conclusion. They should not be “fired”. It’s very easy to criticize the NRSRAs. On some grounds, they are guilty.
They are guilty of missing the problems with mortgage-backed securities. So was everyone else, including the National Underwriter. Should you all be fired?
They are guilty of having a very ponderous, deliberative process. However, this process usually generates a tremendous amount of useful information.
With regard to the downgrade of US Government backed debt, they are 100% right. The current levels of debt are unsustainable. The crisis came to a point in which the President of the United States started talking about the possibility of default. If any private company was involved in this type of discussion, there would be no chance that they would maintain a AAA rating or maybe even a BBB rating.
As I’ve read your comments over the past year, I’ve noticed a shift in the National Underwriter–hard to the left. That’s fine. We all have a point of view, and I’m used to the left-leaning perspective in other media outlets. However, I suspect it’s clouding your judgment here–both regarding the NRSRA’s and the U.S. Government.
This is a case of S&P trying to do the right thing, regardless of the cost to them. Notice that the DOJ is attacking the agency now. That seems to be something worthy of journalistic investigation. It certainly appears to be a heavy-handed response from an embarrassed government interested in discrediting and bullying the agency into capitulation.