Gallagher’s Chris Mead discusses effective branding strategies and harnessing the power of digital marketing.
- Lori Chordas
- March 2020
The value of branding and marketing isn't measured by how many times people open an email or how many people attend a webinar, but rather by the impact and overall value it has had on an organization, said Chris Mead, chief marketing officer at Gallagher. He participated in a Jan. 24 webinar sponsored by AM Best and the Insurance Marketing and Communications Association. Following is an edited transcript of the interview.
What is Gallagher's approach to branding and marketing?
There are reflective ways and aspirational ways of building a brand. Aspiration can be fun, because it's the creativity behind what we're going to be and where we're going.
One of the hardest things to do is to be an aspirational brand in financial services or risk management. Customers, potential employees and partners don't want to know what you might become someday. Rather it's important to have vision and to say that this is who we are.
Everything that Gallagher, my predecessors and co-workers have done over the last 90 years is to look at one thing—The Gallagher Way and helping people face their future with confidence. They've always reflected the culture of this company. The Gallagher brand is so easy for me to articulate because they had articulated it well for so long.
What makes insurance marketing different from marketing for other industries?
As marketers, we're in a really great spot within financial services, and specifically in insurance. It's a more sophisticated way to market.
It's incredibly easy to build an end-cap display to sell more candy bars. But it's very difficult and much more rewarding to help somebody understand why they need cyber insurance or why they should better manage their D&O [directors and officers] risk.
It's harder to do, but once they get it, you're helping them not just manage their business and make sure it's successful, but ensuring that their employees are taken care of.
What's the rationale behind Gallagher's sports marketing partnerships?
The concept of partnerships isn't just some word that we throw around. Nor do we take our name and stick it up in left field at Wrigley or in a park at San Diego.
We really are partners. The people we're doing this with are our customers and we help them with their risk management.
We used to have very low brand recognition in the United Kingdom. But we found a good opportunity with Gallagher Premiership Rugby and created a partnership with its 12 teams.
We want to find organizations that we can learn from and that can learn from us, and that are community-focused and will help us articulate our brand in a positive way.