MetLife has used the Super Bowl in the US to
launch an advertising campaign aiming to persuade consumers that
obtaining insurance does not have to be complicated.

The advertisement opens with Charlie Brown
strolling alongside Lucy, Linus and other Peanuts characters into a
grassy field, when suddenly a small army of other Saturday morning
cartoon characters from the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s meet them.

As the characters come from all points across
the universe to gather in an open field, a voiceover says: “No
matter who you are, no matter where you are from, every family,
everywhere, should have the financial security they need. Not just
the ones who can figure it out. Not just the most fortunate.

At the core of the campaign from the insurer
is the message that people need insurance,but the process of
securing is difficult – or was until now.

Richard Hong, vice-president, for global
brand, marketing and communication at MetLife says: “Most people
know life insurance is essential, but they think the process for
getting it is too hard.

“That’s why our new advertising campaign is
designed to inspire and empower consumers to achieve the financial
security they need. We want everyone to say ‘I Can Do This’ – and
make real progress towards financial security with MetLife.”

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Rising traffic

In the three hours after the advertisement,
traffic doubled to MetLife’s mobile-phone applications, the company
said. Traffic to the company’s website also increased by 34%.

The campaign continued with another 30-second
advertisement, “Piano,” again featuring Linus, Snoopy and other
cartoon characters, which aired in February during the Grammy

An additional three TV spots have been running
since late February, each touching on the different themes
supporting MetLife’s term life insurance products.

Print and digital elements will also support
the launch, with everything tying back to the social networks.

Social networking played a huge role in the
campaign in the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, as a variety of
cartoon characters took to MetLife’s Facebook page and to Twitter
to preview the coming attraction.

The characters spoke online in their own
“voices” – even Scooby Doo hammed it up, posting: “Rook out for me
and Shaggy on TV Feb. 5th!”

The insurer later added “outtakes” of the
commercial, featuring cartoon characters hamming it up online in
another series of short features.

“We’re pleased with the results of the
campaign so far. We have gotten over 53,000 new Facebook fans and
over 600,000 YouTube views of our commercials and videos,” Hong

He added: “In February, we saw an increase in
our brand metrics with top of mind awareness and preference for our
brand both up by 12%. We’re also seeing a progressive increase in
the number of calls to our toll-free number.”

The campaign’s approach of leading the
messaging on Facebook was designed to get people talking about the
advertisement days before they actually ran, and reflects a
strategy adopted by MetLife to use digital engagement as a catalyst
for its marketing efforts across the firm.

The cartoon personalities continue to pop up
unexpectedly on the insurer’s Facebook page, furthering the
conversation and spreading the word virally.

In tandem with the new campaign, MetLife has
developed a term life policy purchase process, accessible via the
company’s web site that can provide a quote, a fully underwritten
offer, and fulfillment, all online in a matter of minutes.

Hong said: “We’ve truly simplified and
demystified the process for buying life insurance.”

In an amazingly serendipitous ending, New
York-based MetLife surely cheered like mad as the hometown New York
Giants ended up as Super Bowl champions in a storybook ending.

Metlife stadium

Just last year, the company won naming rights
to MetLife Stadium, the newly built facility in East Rutherford,
New Jersey, which is home to both the New York Giants and Jets.

The MetLife Stadium agreement makes MetLife
the official insurance company of the Jets, Giants and the stadium
complex, and includes high-profile interior and exterior branding
on the venue.

Specific elements of the agreement include:
naming rights to the stadium, 120,000 sq ft of branded space at the
stadium’s main west entrance, four illuminated signs on the
exterior of the building, four inner-bowl signs, and TV, radio,
print and online media opportunities.

Commenting at the time on the agreement, Beth
Hirschhorn, chief marketing officer of MetLife, said:

“MetLife Stadium now joins the portfolio of
powerful and iconic marketing assets the company has cultivated
over the years, including the MetLife blimps and the company’s
association with the Peanuts characters.”

Next up in the MetLife campaign is a trio of
commercials that take a more tactical approach, featuring the new
online engine that allows the insurer to underwrite life policies
in a single-session purchase on the insurer’s website.