Ads from Arnold Communications, Boston, picture pairings of pink and blue cars and put a twist on a joke from a popular episode of NBC's "Seinfeld." The ads, promoting Hartford's new Diverse Household Auto Insurance -- with up to a 25% discount to gay and lesbian couples -- note, "Heck, we even offer discounts to heterosexual couples. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.)" The tagline: "Commitment. Bring it on."
"Our decision was let's be very clear about reaching this group of people," said Nancy Benben, VP-advertising for Hartford.
Hartford's campaign is innovative for a financial services company as it includes gay-specific creative running in mainstream media. Aetna Life & Casualty, American Express Co., Chase Manhattan Corp. and Merrill Lynch & Co. are other financial services providers targeting the gay market.
Hartford's ads break today in gay magazines Out and The Advocate. The campaign will then roll out to select markets, with outdoor, transit and local newspaper ads slated to break next in San Francisco.
Arnold is looking at other regions on a market-by-market basis, said Karen Riordan, management supervisor on the account.
"The Hartford is filling a market need with this product," she said. "The key message is Hartford provides discounts to all drivers regardless of their sexual orientation."
She said Arnold was charged with "getting the word out and letting people know this product (launched a year ago) exists."
Contributing: Michael Wilke.