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Santam refreshes its brand image

13 May 2011 Santam

Yegs Ramiah, Executive head: people and brand: “Insurance, Good and Proper challenges competitors, promises partnerships for profitability and celebrates the people that drive success”

Santam launches a new, positioning campaign that takes account of a cluttered messaging environment around short-term insurance and positions Santam as the unambiguous leader in the segment, not only in terms of market share, but also in terms of an unyielding focus on service, delivery and continued investment of energy in and commitment to its core business.

Two components make up the brand strategy, a refreshed corporate identity as well as a strong single-minded positioning of Insurance, good and proper. Both these elements are brought to life through an above-the-line campaign on radio, print and television featuring the Academy Award winning actor Sir Ben Kingsley.

The refreshed brand identity gives visual reality to Santam’s leadership status, says Yegs Ramiah, Executive Head; People and Brand at Santam. But it also challenges the assumption that anyone can do insurance. After all, why does anyone take six months to buy the perfect home but only all of ten minutes to insure it?

Santam retains its yellow umbrella that carries valuable brand equity and affinity. The new logo, however, is simpler than its predecessor. It’s modern, crisp, uncluttered and iconic. It is the ideal visual representation of Santam’s leadership and commitment to insurance, good and proper.

Ian Kirk, Santam chief executive says: “The yellow umbrella embodies who Santam is, what we offer, our past successes and our future aspirations. I am proud of our brand, respectful of the equity it contains and the power it holds.”

“The change comes from a clear-headed business decision,” Ramiah says. “Santam is determined to claim its market leader status with confidence and stature. The revised logo exploits the fact that the yellow umbrella is instantly recognisable and has become a South African brand icon. However, this is more than just a revised visual representation of the brand. The redesign comes on the back of a number of hard, yet important, business decisions and ambitions. It differentiates Santam’s offering and value to shareholders, clients, partners and the broader South African economy.”

A large number of competitor insurers have entered the market in recent years. This, Ramiah says, has exposed consumers to a myriad of choices in regard to every single aspect of short-term insurance; has created an element of consumer confusion and has effectively eroded the value of the short-term insurance industry. Quality, consistency, service and commitment are erroneously assumed to be givens across all player options, and where cost becomes the sole driver of short-term insurance consumer decision-making. In essence this has commoditised the industry.

“At the core of our success as a business lies a single-minded focus on excellence. We have always been, and will remain, fully committed to the financial security of clients; mutually profitable relationships with brokers; and the wellbeing of staff. Ours is a solid offering with a track record unmatched in South Africa.

“I am confident that the refreshed brand articulates our absolute commitment to integrity, to certainty, to our single-minded focus on short-term insurance; to excellence and to delivering insurance with stature. Santam has worked hard to attain its unequivocal market leader position. We will continue working hard to maintain this position. We are absolutely confident in our resolve and in our commitment to the sector and to our clients. And now, we are being vocal about this, too.”

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