Progressive’s pull back on its advertising in the second half of 2016 in order to maintain its profit goals created an in-market consumer ad awareness gap with Geico that Progressive is having a slow time closing now that they are marketing again at full strength.
Geico’s ad awareness, among consumers who stated they were in the market to purchase insurance, held steady at 50% to 51% from the beginning of 2016 through the end of August, always several percentage points ahead of Progressive. The gap began widening in the second half of the year, as Progressive’s ad awareness dropped to 38% by November 30th and Geico inched up to 52%, a difference of 14 percentage points.
Currently, Geico is at 49% ad awareness, while Progressive is at 41%, compared to its 2016 high of 48%. Progressive advertising kicked back in earlier this year.
Of more importance to these companies’ bottom lines is YouGov BrandIndex’s Purchase Consideration metric, a measurement of potential future revenue. Despite the cutback in advertising, Progressive and Geico maintained a neck and neck race in purchase consideration throughout last year. But in the first quarter this year, Progressive’s drop in consideration created the biggest disparity between the two insurers since last August.
Breaking down the purchase consideration numbers, from August 2016 through January 2017, both Progressive and Geico remained close, 20% to 21% of “in-market for insurance” consumers saying they would consider each brand the next time they were shopping for insurance. In mid-February, Progressive’s percentage fell to 17%, then back up to its current 20%, matching Geico.
YouGov BrandIndex measured Geico and Progressive with its Ad Awareness score, which asks respondents "Which of the following brands have you seen an advertisement for in the past two weeks?" as well as its Purchase Consideration score, which asks respondents, “Which of the following brands would you consider the next time you are in the market to purchase an insurance policy?”
Ad Awareness and Purchase Consideration scores range from zero to 100%.
All results are filtered for consumers who said they were very likely, likely or somewhat likely to purchase insurance in the following twelve months.
Ad Awareness: Geico, Progressive (consumers in market for insurance)
Purchase Consideration: Geico, Progressive (consumers in market for insurance)