Recently, I had the chance to chat with Vicki Harper of State Farm Insurance to learn how the company has updated its Teen Driving Safety Programs since the 2010 case study in “Tuning into Mom: Understanding America’s Most Powerful consumer”. State Farm’s programs, including the Steer Clear Discount Program, seek to help teens become safer drivers. Vicki emphasizes,
“State Farm and our agents are committed to being a resource for families with teens who are learning to drive. Our programs are based on research findings about the best approaches for both the teen driver and the parent.”
Such a commitment will resonate with Mom as her teen learns to drive. Unsurprisingly, Marketing to Moms Coalition research shows that 86% of moms consider the physical safety of her child as “very important”, and teen driver safety ranks very highly among moms of teens as a top priority.
Beyond safe driving, State Farm achieves two marketing goals with their teen driving programs:
- Providing agents with tools to connect with and support families during an important family life event – teens learning to drive
- Retention of existing customers who are parents, and outreach to future customers (the teen drivers).
Vicki explains how agents connect with families and use Teen Driving Safety Programs as a marketing tool:
“The agents often bring the student in and talk with them, and facilitate goal setting between the teen, mom and dad.”
State Farm recognizes that their programs must evolve to attract Mom and teen’s attention on an ongoing basis. Some of the new features State Farm has added to this marketing toolbox include publishing a teen driving website, along with these specific programs:
Celebrate My Drive
Launched in September 2012 to coincide with National Teen Driver Safety Week, Celebrate My Drive brings positivity into the conversation about teen driving, stressing the benefits of safe driving, not just the dangers. Learning to drive and getting a license is a celebratory time for the teen and family—and teens will respond more actively to this positive message.
This program is designed for the teen learning to drive and is based on research by Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia about the cognitive skills required, importance of practice and driving conditions. The research resulted in a step-by-step driving program. State Farm introduced Road Trips during National Teen Driver Safety Week in 2011, and it complements the Steer Clear program.
This driving simulator helps teens learn to anticipate hazards and become more aware of common dangers. Teens can make mistakes and learn from them without putting themselves or other drivers at risk. Mom feels safer about her teen learning in a safe environment, while the teen enjoys the game-like experience.
Across the nation, State Farm has seen growing agent participation, with more teens enrolled in the programs. By providing practical tools that parents and teens can use, State Farm is supporting Mom’s emphasis on driving health and safety during this stage of her child’s life. The company provides a useful case study showing how powerful and positive connections to the importance of keeping her child safe can lead to lasting loyalty from the mom market.