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We drove through the town of Ribnica today and had to stop for a couple of minutes because of road works. My wife noticed an interesting plaque on a house, which said “Insured by Yugoslavia”. It seems insurance companies of the previous century really knew how to advertise their services.

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Why is this kind of advertising good?

  • Because without a doubt, all the villagers – and an occasional passer-by – notice the plaque.
  • Because the neighbors see it.
  • Because the neighbors then discuss their insurance policies and their advantages, and support their choice. This is a good example of word-of-mouth.
  • Because if one house is insured soon there are going to be more. You know how it goes in Slovenia – if a neighbor did it, I have to do it too.
  • Because the plaque says that the house has a good master.
  • Because it discourages competitors’ sales representatives (on the other hand, it might invite them, too).
  • Because…

Later I asked my father about the plaque and he said that his father’s house had a similar one, a Vzajemna insurance company plate from before the War. It seems all insurance companies used to do it. The idea itself is nothing special; it’s been used by companies from other industries for quite some time now.

Think about it for a while. You must’ve noticed that almost every inn has its name written on a sign that also advertises beer.

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