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Insurance Marketing
Driving Ahead

Comedian Tina Fey is teaming up with Allstate’s Mayhem to drive home the message of safe driving, and Axa is opening up the lines of communication about mental health issues in a new brand campaign.
  • Lori Chordas
  • January 2020
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Behind the Wheel

Award-winning comedian, actress, writer and producer Tiny Fey is in the driver's seat in two ALLSTATE TV ads that feature the insurer's iconic Mayhem character.

In one spot, Mayhem, played by actor Dean Winters, portrays Fey's 70-pound St. Bernard puppy who tries to distract his owner by leaning out the car window, eating her leather purse and licking her face while she's driving. However, Fey is able to control the situation and remain focused on the road, which helps to save her money with Allstate's Drivewise. The tool allows drivers to earn cash back or redeem points for rewards for good driving habits.

In another ad, Winters plays a mother-in-law whose critical remarks are a distraction to Fey while driving. But once again Fey's confidence behind the wheel is no match for Mayhem.

Allstate introduced its Mayhem advertising character in 2010. Since then, the villainous mischief-maker has appeared as a blind spot, a windstorm, a portable grill, a distracted teenage girl, a burglar, a destructive raccoon and other characters that wreak havoc as he tries to give helpful advice.

“It was fun to introduce a twist to this iconic campaign by having Mayhem finally meet his match, in the form of safe driver Tina Fey,” said David Hernandez, senior vice president and chief creative officer at Allstate.

This year marks Allstate's 10th anniversary of Drivewise, which has “evolved into a sophisticated and customized mobile experience—and you don't even have to be an Allstate customer to use it and get rewards,” Hernandez said.

Fey has starred in TV shows such as Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock and movies including Baby Mama and Mean Girls. She has won numerous Primetime Emmy, Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild and Writers Guild of America awards.

Let's Talk About It

AXA is focusing on mental health issues in a new brand campaign, “Sharing Makes Us Stronger,” that encourages individuals to talk to others about how they feel as a first step to becoming more mentally resilient.

Today, nearly 450 million people around the world suffer from mental or neurological disorders, and one in four individuals will be affected by those disorders at some point in their lives, according to the World Health Organization.

At the heart of Axa's campaign, which is running across TV, cinema and video on demand, are four films that tell the real-life stories of the people whose struggles with mental health are dramatized in the 30- and 60-second TV ads.

Axa is tying the campaign into its recent sponsorship of Liverpool F.C. One of the films tells the story of Liverpool F.C. Women's club captain Sophie Bradley-Auckland. Another story is shared by poet Aiysha Humphreys who created the spoken word poem featured in the ads.

Axa is committed to helping people become both physically and mentally resilient, said Karen Robson, brand director at Axa UK.

“Good mental health is such a vital part of our overall well-being, but there is still a stigma around talking about our problems. Talking to those around us about how we are feeling is the first step to sharing the burden and, if needed, getting further help and support,” she said.

Lori Chordas is a senior associate editor. She can be reached at

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