It all started with five unscripted words.
Back in 2007, Progressive Insurance’s brand recognition was somewhere between zero and being mistaken for Progresso soup. The company needed an identity and, working with its ad agency Arnold Worldwide, came up with the concept of the superstore. If most people thought shopping for insurance was hell, the superstore–all gleaming white, neatly ordered shelves–represented heaven. Not only that, but its rows of boxes labeled for car, home, and other types of insurance made tangible a product and sales process many found confusing.
In the campaign’s first-ever ad, aired on January 14, 2008, a customer says, “Wow,” impressed with all the extras that come with his savings of more than $350. A cashier named Flo echoes his enthusiasm and says, “Wow! I say it louder…” And that was it.