Ohio Casualty Insurance, Summit Insurance Join Trusted Choice

February 11, 2002

The Ohio Casualty Insurance Company and Summit Insurance Company (Rhode Island) are the newest partners in the Independent Insurance Agents of America’s (IIAA) Trusted ChoiceSM branding initiative, which is set to debut its first television commercials later this month, according to Ronald A. Smith, CPCU, agent chairman of IIAA’s Communications/Branding Task Force.

The culmination of two years of research and development, Trusted ChoiceSM is a marketing brand created by IIAA to increase consumer awareness of the benefits independent insurance agents offer: choice, customization and advocacy.

“Ohio Casualty is a well-established and highly respected industry leader, and Summit Insurance Company is an up-and-coming new company with an exciting and vibrant vision for the future,” explained Smith. “Yet both companies bring to the partnership distinctive qualities that will enhance Trusted ChoiceSM in the eyes of consumers, agents and their company peers. Both Ohio Casualty and Summit Insurance recognize that Trusted ChoiceSM will be a key factor to their future success.

“These partnerships demonstrate that the Trusted ChoiceSM brand is valued by large and small companies alike because it will drive consumers to the doors of independent agents and their insurance company partners. The companies that have and will partner with IIAA understand that Trusted ChoiceSM agencies soon will be the preferred choice of consumers,” said Smith, president of Rochester, Ind.-based independent agency, Smith, Sawyer & Smith, Inc.”

Other companies that already are partners with the program are SAFECO, MSA Group, Progressive, Encompass Insurance, Selective Insurance Group, MetLife Auto & Home, and The Hartford.

Promotion of the Trusted ChoiceSM brand will be accomplished through advertising, public relations, local-agency marketing and an innovative web site.

The consumer rollout of the Trusted ChoiceSM brand will take place Feb. 25-March 24 in two pilot markets: Louisville, Ky. and Seattle/Tacoma, Wash. Trusted ChoiceSM television commercials will appear several hundred times in the two regions.

As part of the partnership program, IIAA is encouraging its company partners to use the Trusted ChoiceSM logo in their agency and consumer marketing as an ingredient brand.

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