Dear State Farm,

One thing that seems to continually bother me is when the wealthiest people and companies choose not to really do the world some good.  When they choose profits over people.  When they are genuinely in a position to change an industry for the better which will increase their profits and genuinely help the American public and they choose not to.  Baffled by it.

Why write today?

  • Because every time I receive another letter from you I wonder why another tree branch had to die.
  • Because I wonder why a huge company allows their product to be so diluted by advertising.
  • Because I wonder about the last time you or I calculated any savings in percentages.
  • Because I am wondering if there is anyone who can accurately calculate a discount on an insurance policy.
  • Because I am wondering why, in the age of specialization, personalization and niches you still send to “or Current Resident”
  • Because I am wondering why, if you are really a good neighbor, you don’t use local printers and mailing operations.
  • Because I am wondering why you are still using white envelopes when there is science behind using colored envelopes.
  • Because I am wondering why you use a standard #10 envelope when you can mail one twice the size for the same cost.

Oh, and your copy stinks.  Seriously, do any of your agents have enough time to “take a long, hard look at all the possible ways you can save….” Really, if you are still combing through policies you have bigger issues.

But then again you are the largest insurer in the U.S.A.  You also have fifteen agents within about ten miles of my home.  **That is scary**  What do I know.  Either way, thanks for reading.



Billy Van Jura


Disclaimer; There is good and bad in everything and advertising/marketing is no exception.  We are reminded of this every time we open our inbox, our mailbox, drive around, listen to the radio, watch T.V. etc.  I suppose the other side of this is that the lazy, spam like advertising perpetrated by many companies actually makes average advertising look good and good look great.

Thank you State Farm

Thank you for being so large and mostly doing things so good that you force the entire industry of personal insurance to raise their collective “game.” Of course the larger you are the more chance you have to make mistakes so I do not give a whole lot of thought to the usual complaints.

Now I have spoken previously about your awful use of marketing so will not be walking that road today.  I did want to imagine something though.  What if you spent a small portion of your money actually helping create better customers?  Well you have the most customers, by some estimates 1 of every 5 cars, so in theory you can have the biggest impact.

How about instead of letting 5 agents in Poughkeepsie send out the same stupid letter about multi-policy discounts and “saving” $825 you include some education.  Here are some thoughts;

  • You use credit as a part of your rate.  How about some basic tips on improving your credit
  • How about telling people taking a defensive driving course will help?  You can probably drive down the price of the course and maybe make it better?
  • How about pushing the annual review?  You know you have plenty of claims where a home was not properly insured.  Maybe you can get Accucoverage to release a wide scale version of their site.  Heck maybe you can make your own?
  • How about coordinating your marketing?  Maybe then you can print on 100% recycled paper or even use postcards.  Lot of waste here
  • How about you be the first company to institute rate reductions instead of rate increases?  My goodness this would be fascinating to see.  Don’t be like Allstate and charge people for the “privilege” of being rewarded for good behavior

Just some thoughts.  Your HUGE use your size to the advantage of an entire industry.