Geico Roadside Assistance TV Spot Highlights Location Services

The Martin Agency's ad shows car insurance customers who use Geico's mobile app can call for help without saying a word.

For all the attention given to on-demand apps for food delivery and other non-essential services, the ability of insured drivers to get quick help with the click of a mobile app’s button is the basis of a new Geico ad campaign by The Martin Agency.

Whether a driver is locked out of their car, faced with a flat tire, out of gas, or even stuck in ditch, the 30-second spot, Dead Car Battery: Easier Done Than Said (check it out on YouTube) illustrates how Geico is trying to get the word out about its app-based roadside assistance services by driving one point home: no words are needed.

The ad represents a break with the typical Geico TV spot. Those ads generally feature the insurance company’s English-accented gekko mascot telling consumers how they can save an average of 15 percent using its coverage.

No gekko here. Instead, this one’s structured more like a silent movie. Using just head shakes and hand gestures, a couple and their small dog find themselves stranded in a parking lot after being unable to start their car.

No Words Needed

“The brief was all about getting people to think of Geico for Emergency Roadside Service,” Dave Ashton, a copywriter for Interpublic Group-owned Martin Agency, told GeoMarketing. “Many people don’t realize that Geico has it, or how easy it is to request it, right from the Geico mobile app. The use of the mobile app was key, to show people they could tap their way out of a problem—without saying a word.”

In The Martin Agency’s “Dead Car Battery: Easier Done Than Said” for Geico, a stranded couple needs roadside assistance.

In the ad, the nonplussed husband behind the wheel is contrasted by his confident wife. She raises a calm finger, pulls out her phone, and pulls up the Geico app’s roadside assistance menu. Clicking on the location function shows a drop pin that brings immediate arrival a tow truck driver who gives the car’s battery a jump with his cable.

“Requesting Emergency Roadside Service from the Geico mobile app is a piece of cake,” Ashton said. “We wanted people to see just how easy it is for themselves by demo-ing the app on TV. So, we created these wordless ads to show that you don’t even need to speak to get help. It’s easier done than said.”

Geico On Location

Asked about the differences between this spot and the typical Geico ad The Martin Agency has long produced, Ashton noted that the insurer has done quite a bit of radio ads promoting the mobile app’s ability to zero in on a user’s location.

“As far as I can recall, this is the first time it’s be highlighted in a TV commercial,” he said. “It wasn’t about having certain app improvements in place, the time just felt right.”

In addition to the TV spots, The Martin Agency is also refining the online and mobile ad extensions to promote Geico’s roadside assistance offering.

“With most of the work we do for Geico, we try to look for ways to get the creative online,” Ashton said. “Whether it’s through pre-roll placements or we tailor the work for Facebook, we try to reach that other audience that might not catch it on TV.”

About The Author
David Kaplan David Kaplan @davidakaplan

A New York City-based journalist for over 20 years, David Kaplan is managing editor of A former editor and reporter at AdExchanger, paidContent, Adweek and MediaPost.