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73pc of users engage with American Family Insurance ads

American Family Insurance is seeing a strong initial engagement rate on a new mobile ad campaign that uses video and games to increase brand awareness and ultimately drive quotes from agents.

American Family Insurance is using three different types of ad creatives for its ?Long Live Dreams? campaign that promotes safe driving including two branded games and a long-form video unit. The company is working with SessionM and Mindshare on this initiative.

?The ability for a regional advertiser to be integrated into a content experience is difficult because publishers do not often make it available to target consumers in specific markets,? said Bill Clifford, chief revenue officer at SessionM, Boston.

?What American Family Insurance likes about our platform is that we are deeply integrated into the app experience and that we can deliver targeted ads,? he said.

American Family Insurance claims to be the third-largest mutual property/casual insurance company in the United States with operations in 19 states.

Mobile drivers
The ads are running in SessionM?s network of apps and are targeted in areas where American Family Insurance provides its services.

American Family Insurance has partnered with Habitat for Humanity on the campaign.

By either watching a video or playing a game inside the ad, consumers can earn points that can be redeemed for a donation to Habitat for Humanity. For each 1,000 points that a consumer earns, $2 will be donated.

The two 30-second game units involved encourage users to avoid obstacles while steering a virtual car or flick away threats in an arcade-style game.

Once a user either finishes the game or watches the video, a page pops up where users can see their score, redeem the points towards the donation, click-to-call an American Family Insurance agent or add a reminder to their phone?s calendar to call an agent later.

?From a brand-building perspective, it is effective but at the end of the day, they need to get people to call for quotes,? Mr. Clifford said.

?Everything is top of the funnel and winning consumers over with the brand to ultimately move them down the path to calling an agent,? he said.

Initial results from the campaign are promising. In addition to the 73 percent opt-in engagement rate, the campaign has seen a 17 percent click-through rate for the click-to-call portion of the campaign.

The campaign runs through the end of the year.

Beyond the banner
As mobile advertising matures, marketers are increasingly looking to break out of banner ad units.

Banner ads essentially port desktop display into mobile phones and tablets, meaning that the ad units do not necessarily tap into the context or behavior of mobile users, per Mr. Clifford.

Additionally, a large amount of banner click ads are unintentional. In fact a study from Harris Interactive on behalf of Pontiflex in December 2010 found that 47 percent of clicks on mobile ads are accidental (see story).

By incorporating reward-based advertising into apps, SessionM believes that consumers will be more likely to interact with advertising that is contextually relevant to app content. This also pushes mobile advertising to be more invitational versus invasive.

?We are trying to create a paradigm shift to a scenario where consumers are actually looking for ads and they like the experience,? Mr. Clifford said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Marketer, New York