Life Happens was so pleased with racecar driver and personality Danica Patrick as the face of its annual 2017 life insurance campaign, they signed her up for a second year.
Keeping that momentum going into 2019 was going to be difficult – but then Brooke Shields expressed interest in fronting this year’s campaign. And the 54-year-old actress and model checked off even more boxes, said Faisa Stafford, president and chief financial officer of Life Happens.
“The great thing about Brooke is that she has kids, so having that mentality of wanting to protect her kid’s future and her legacy,” Stafford said. “Also, just her story of how she found out about life insurance and how she purchased it even before getting married or having kids.”
As part of the partnership, Shields will serve as the national spokesperson for Life Insurance Awareness Month, the annual awareness campaign coordinated by Life Happens and supported by the nation's leading insurance companies and industry groups each September.
A model and actress, Shields has been in the public eye since playing a child prostitute in the controversial film “Pretty Baby” in 1978. She later became the face of Calvin Klein, starred in movies such as “Blue Lagoon” and graduated from Princeton University.
“Everything just kind of aligned with her,” Stafford explained. “Her message, her reach and her appeal, her broad appeal, I mean from age range, household income and also just awareness of her name was huge. Thankfully, she also believes in the message.”
'It May Seem Scary'
Serving as an executor of a friend's will, Shields saw firsthand the unique challenges that arise when someone passes without life insurance, Life Happens said.
"It may seem scary and even unattainable at first, but life insurance is much more affordable than most people realize, and the certainty it offers is invaluable," Shields said in a news release. "I'm thrilled to be supporting Life Happens by sharing the message about the value of life insurance so more people can protect their loved ones."
Shields was unavailable for an interview.
Life Happens sponsored its first Life Insurance Awareness Month in 2004. Despite efforts since then, surveys continue to show a large life insurance gap that agents can't seem to penetrate.
The 2019 Life Insurance Barometer Study by Life Happens and LIMRA found that only 57 percent of Americans have life insurance, and four in 10 households without it would immediately struggle to pay living expenses if their primary wage earner died.
Shields is appearing in print, radio and TV spots for Life Happens. So far, more than 60 million viewers have seen either the radio or TV ad, the organization said.
Those "impressions" are how Life Happens measures the success, or lack thereof, of its annual campaign, Stafford said. “Our goal is for every consumer in America to see her advertisement."
A Diversity Component
In addition, this year's campaign includes a marketing relationship with Google to air LIAM ads on all Google channels, including YouTube.
In addition, the campaign is heavily focused on diversity and underserved sectors, Stafford said. This year's theme is "It's not for you. It's for them."
“It’s all about different life situations and lifestyles," Stafford said. "So we’re really pushing this diversity in our content so we’re talking about single parents, we’re talking about same-sex marriages, we’re talking about different life stages and retirement and even annuities and the different needs these folks have.”
InsuranceNewsNet Senior Editor John Hilton has covered business and other beats in more than 20 years of daily journalism. John may be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @INNJohnH.
© Entire contents copyright 2019 by InsuranceNewsNet.com Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted without the expressed written consent from InsuranceNewsNet.com.