MEDIA 360: Aviva marketer Mackenzie calls for distinctive media ideas

Aviva's chief marketing officer Amanda Mackenzie today stated her aim to position the brand around the concept 'No-one recognises you like Aviva', and encouraged media owners to come up with ways to make her brand distinctive.

Amanda Mackenzie: chief marketing officer at Aviva
Amanda Mackenzie: chief marketing officer at Aviva

Speaking to an audience of media buyers and sellers at the Media 360 conference in Manchester, Mackenzie outlined the success of the global rebrand she oversaw from the latter part of 2008 and through last year.

The company changed its name from Norwich Union to Aviva in the UK, as part of a rebrand to Aviva in four international markets.

Mackenzie opened her presentation by admitting that she was no media expert, but felt that the media community was currently obsessing about rates and was forgetting that "at the end of the day, the good stuff prevails".

She invited delegates to approach her with good media ideas to help Aviva carve out a distinctive positioning in the insurance sector.

The rebrand, which involved an ad campaign featuring celebrities who have changed their names, such as Bruce Willis and Ringo Starr, has been successful so far, Mackenzie said.

She credited media agency OMD and creative agency AMV for their roles in a "textbook" rebrand executed well.

In terms of brand consideration, it suddenly put Aviva "in a set of brands I never thought we'd be in", such as First Direct and John Lewis. Spontaneous awareness rose by a factor of four.

Asked by MediaVest director Charlie Varley whether any particular media channel had helped the campaign, Mackenzie cited television first, and then out-of-home.

She said: "The single biggest thing that contributed to the cut-through was television. Out-of-home was very powerful for us too. Within three weeks, 90% of people were aware of the name change."

Read more from Media 360 on the blog here.

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