For more than a century, the brave members of the U.S. military have relied on Armed Forces Insurance to protect their families and property while they protect our country. The insurance company was originally formed—and continues to be led—by former military leaders who have experienced the unique challenges that accompany service in the armed forces. Since 1887, AFI’s competitive, tailor-made insurance plans and exemplary customer service have afforded countless military members and their families with both peace of mind and peace of wallet.
Despite its 130-year history of exceptional service and rich member engagement, AFI believed it had an opportunity to better serve and communicate with its growing customer base. After nearly a decade of collaboration, the insurance company selected DEG as its Agency of Record in early 2018, citing the agency’s customer-centric approach and strategies. As its AOR, DEG leads its creative, strategic, and marketing efforts—including paid media, email, social, web services, and content strategy.
To get a better understanding of AFI’s challenges and immediate needs, DEG kicked off the new engagement by leading a one-day brand foundation workshop. During the session, the companies created a roadmap of AFI’s long-term business ambitions, discussed its most significant obstacles, and took a closer look at AFI’s branding.
A consistent, recognizable brand is critical to any business’ growth, culture, and bottom line. AFI already had a powerful internal rallying cry, but its external communication assets were disparate and weren’t helping AFI stand out from its competitors. DEG and AFI reshaped the brand’s tone and voice, opting to focus more on the emotional benefits of a partnership with AFI and less on the tactical advantages. With the new direction in mind, the companies created AFI’s differentiating statement and ideated how the refreshed brand can be used to improve its customer journeys.
Another obstacle for AFI was overly broad targeting. DEG leveraged data, consumer insights, and context to help AFI get an in-depth understanding of its customers’ motivations and challenges, and the companies used these findings to inform the direction of AFI’s new marketing and targeting efforts.
After the workshop, DEG began working on AFI’s new brand guidelines and creative assets. The agency polished the brand’s voice and tone and incorporated new color and design elements to help AFI stand apart from its competitors. To ensure the brand translates across channels effectively, DEG also created best-practice strategy guidelines for each channel.
DEG and AFI reshaped the brand’s tone and voice, opting to focus more on the emotional benefits of a partnership with AFI and less on the tactical advantages.
Three weeks after the collaborative one-day workshop, AFI’s new brand guidelines were approved and ready for use. Since launching earlier this year, DEG has used the new guidelines to create paid ads, emails, landing pages, videos, and print collateral.
Establishing a consistent, strategic brand direction was an essential first step toward reaching AFI’s long-term business ambitions, and its new branding will serve as the foundation for all of its future marketing and communication efforts. The companies are currently working on a number of other projects, including a new website that will launch within the next year.
For 130 years, AFI’s message to its members has been, “You pledge to protect us. It’s our honor to protect you.” With a new brand strategy that emphasizes its mission and values, the insurance company can further differentiate itself from competitors and better serve members of the armed forces and their families.
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