The Gecko at New York Comic Con: Right where he belonged

By on October 27, 2014 at 10:50 AM

Posted in: Marketing & Communications

CosplayMob

For four days in New York City, fans of many pop culture genres came together and created a universe like no other at New York Comic Con (NYCC). What is Comic Con? It is a fan convention dedicated to comic books, graphic novels, anime, magna, video games, toys, artists, movies and television. But it’s much more; New York Comic Con is one of the largest pop culture events in the world, with an attendance of 151,000 earlier this month.

The GEICO Gecko was excited to attend (#GEICOCon) and was particularly intrigued by the “cosplay,” another term unique to this universe; it’s a contraction of the words “costume playing.” It’s dressing up, but way beyond what you normally see at a costume party.

3D picturesThe fans/attendees are what make the Comic Con experience extraordinary. It’s the ultimate Halloween town. Sure, you can see panels with your favorite stars and icons. And yes, you’ll find awesome exhibitors and great buys. But at their core, Comic Cons are primarily a celebration of what these fans care about, in an open and welcoming environment.

GEICO pulled out all the stops at Comic Con, rolling in the GEICO Bus that features pinball games and GEICO Karaoke (#GEICOonTour). And just for Comic Con, we had a special green screen 3D photo facility that gave fans the opportunity to have their own action movie moment! But we didn’t stop there! We hosted a daily cosplay competition that gave some of the fans a chance to get a little extra time in the spotlight. I assisted in finding candidates for this competition, and there was certainly no shortage! Thank goodness the winners were chosen by crowd acclaim, because judging the best of all the fabulous outfits would have been too difficult!

Super GeckoThe Gecko even participated in some cosplay himself, donning a SuperGecko cape. Superman might be able to save people in dire danger, but could he save you money on your insurance and help you get your damaged vehicle repaired after an accident? Can he help you with homeowners, renters or commercial insurance, not to mention all the other products GEICO sells? No, he can’t, but SuperGecko can!

Every day, 50 stuffed mini-SuperGeckos were hidden around the convention center. Each one included a little note asking their finders to take a selfie with him and bring him to the bus to get an extra special gift to go with the stuffed keepsake.

FrishLeapUnfortunately, the fun had to end. As you can see from my 3-D photo on this page, I rather enjoyed myself while representing GEICO at Comic Con, and if the opportunity should arise again, you can bet I’ll volunteer!

 

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GEICO takes Talladega by storm … and by air

By on October 22, 2014 at 3:57 PM

Posted in: Marketing & Communications

TalladegaSkyTypersTalk about getting up for an event! On a day when Brad Keselowski topped the field (including GEICO-sponsored Casey Mears, who finished 10th) on the ground, GEICO Skytypers Chris Orr (in the #2 airplane) and Tom Daly (in the #6 airplane) performed their routine high above the racetrack for the capacity crowd last Sunday, Oct. 19, during the GEICO 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at the Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega, Alabama.

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Right on track for the GEICO 500

By on October 14, 2014 at 3:42 PM

Posted in: Marketing & Communications

TalledegaIn just a few days, the quiet town of Talladega, Alabama, will roar to life with the sounds of engines and cheering fans; the GEICO 500 kicks off on Oct. 17 for three days of NASCAR thrills.

About two hours west of Atlanta and an hour east of Birmingham, this small city is home to one of the most famous racetracks in the country: the Talladega Superspeedway. Even if you’re not a racing fan, you may have heard of it thanks to a certain Will Ferrell comedy. The track is the steepest one on the NASCAR circuit, with 33-degree banked turns; it’s also the longest, at 2.66 miles. These factors add excitement and unpredictability to the race.

Drivers will be itching for glory at the starting line, including GEICO-sponsored driver Casey Mears in the No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS. Show him your support by wearing green and blue or any of your GEICO gear!

Part of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, the GEICO 500 at the Talladega Superspeedway will feature 3,000 acres of campgrounds, including the only free sites in the series. Keep an eye out for our GEICO RV brand ambassadors handing out great prizes and searching for the most unique RV set up, which will win the Golden Gecko award! 

Support your favorite drivers (and the Gecko) October 17-19 at the GEICO 500! And keep an eye out for Ricky Bobby and Jean Girard!

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A day in the life of a GEICO national college recruiter

By on October 8, 2014 at 2:15 PM

Posted in: Working at GEICO

Meet Jason and Justine, two of GEICO’s four national college recruiters. These hard-working individuals travel to different college campuses across the country looking for great candidates to join the GEICO family. Our national college recruiters each will visit as many as 10 schools in their assigned territories during the fall semester. Here is a glimpse inside the life of GEICO recruiters:

 JustineDuring the heavy recruiting months, what does your day usually look like?

Justine: “I typically jump on a plane and head out to the college for career fairs, presentations, meetings with faculty and professors, or campus groups or organizations. After those events, I make sure that I follow up with the candidates that I met that day.”

Jason: “At many campuses, I’ll conduct an information session, connect with various student organizations, and be present at their career fairs. Since I spend so much time on campuses and traveling to different locations, follow-ups with students are done over the phone in airports and hotel rooms.“

What does your day typically look like during the “off” months?

Justine: “A typical day consists of conducting interviews, updating job posts on career sites, and connecting with candidates via social media channels.”

JasonJason: “I spend the summer months following up with candidates and conducting up to seven interviews a week. I also research and reach out to different universities and colleges to see if we should be attending career fairs or hosting events on that specific campus.”

What do you like most about recruiting?

Justine: “I like meeting the students; I see it as an opportunity to help the candidate in their career search by giving advice on resumes and cover letters, fine-tuning their interviewing skills and helping them find their way to GEICO.”

Jason: “I like meeting the students on campus and at career fairs. It’s exciting to see them go through the hiring process and get selected to join the GEICO family! This is rewarding because I know I played a role in helping secure a career for them.”

What is your favorite line from a GEICO commercial?

Justine: “I don’t have a favorite line but I love the “hump day “commercial. It cracks me up every time!”

Jason: “Hey you dang woodchucks, quit chucking my wood!”

Check our Careers page to find out where our recruiters will be during the fall semester and learn more about the career opportunities available at GEICO!

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The day I got my Gecko on

By on October 3, 2014 at 3:35 PM

Posted in: Marketing & Communications

By guest blogger Richard Blake, event marketing

NASDAQ Gecko

Not many are called, and even fewer are chosen, but this past Monday, Sept. 29, it was my turn. The GEICO Gecko was invited to the NASDAQ MarketSite in New York for the 11th annual Advertising Week – and I was invited to BE the Gecko!

I jumped at the chance to represent my company at this event as the Gecko – a past winner of Advertising Week’s Icon of the Year contest. The energy inside the NASDAQ tower was electrifying; I felt like I was getting ready to deliver a presidential address to the United States Congress. OK, the Gecko doesn’t speak at events like this, but still – I was excited.

I joined many other legendary ad icons – the Travelocity gnome, the Aflac duck, coffee man Juan Valdez and many more – on the closing bell stage. I got goose bumps as I watched Matt Scheckner, executive director of Advertising Week, deliver a fantastic speech about the origins of Advertising Week and why it draws attention from around the world. Inside the Gecko suit, I knew I was being televised by a national network, which made the experience even more compelling.

We had program rehearsals on the podium stage before going live, and I remember thinking, “I could get used to this.” However, after about 30 minutes in the suit and “Take 15,” I thought otherwise!

Scheckner – that’s me with him in the photo above – rang the NASDAQ closing bell with support from us icons. I wanted to get closer to the bell, but it was dark up there on the podium in the Gecko suit, and I was afraid I might fall off the stage on live TV, so I decided to hold my place.

The Gecko likes to be memorable, but not like that!

GeckoNASDAQ2

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Play ball! Get ready for baseball’s best

By on October 2, 2014 at 4:34 PM

Posted in: Marketing & Communications

?????????It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and not because the kids are back in school, although that’s nice, too. Rather, I refer to the wondrousness that is playoff baseball.

I’ve been an Orioles fan almost all my life, and we’re giddy to have our team back in the post-season. It has been WAY too long since 1983. But since 2005, I’ve become a Nationals fan first, just as I was a Senators fan first way back in the 1960s and early 1970s. So I’m doubly excited to have BOTH of the teams I support in the playoffs and, I hope, destined to meet each other in the World Series.

But between now and then, baseball fans everywhere – especially those who root for the Dodgers, Cardinals, Tigers, Angels or the other playoff teams – are in for a great roller-coaster ride, with peaks of exhilaration when our favorite teams are winning, and stark despair when things aren’t going so well. As a Nats fan, I’ve only experienced it once, two years ago, when Washington won the NL East, only to lose in excruciating fashion to the Cardinals in the first round. But that series also featured a walk-off homer in Game Four by the Nats’ Jayson Werth to extend the series to the final game. In all my years as a sports fan, that was one of the most exciting moments I’ve ever experienced.

There’s nothing comparable to the intensity of playoff baseball, which increases with every pitch, every at-bat, every inning, every game until the winner is determined. And for GEICO employees who are also baseball fans, like me, there’s an extra measure of pride in knowing that GEICO is a sponsor of Major League Baseball, and in seeing our logo displayed in the teams’ ballparks.

That’s not going to be much comfort if our teams don’t achieve the success we want for them, but it might ease the pain a little. Play ball!

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GEICO associates get muddy for Armed Services YMCA

By on September 30, 2014 at 11:11 AM

Posted in: Marketing & Communications

Mud Team

At the 14th annual Armed Services YMCA Mud Run in Norfolk, Virginia, last month, GEICO’s associates took to the mud like a pig takes to … well, mud.

GEICO served as title sponsor of the event, and 23 associates from the company’s Virginia Beach office entered the race, alongside 20 additional associates and their friends and family members who volunteered as race marshals and water station attendants. GEICO’s racers navigated the intense 5-mile course of sand, woods, water hazards, obstacles and mud pits to win both first and second place in the team competition— a first in the event’s history.

The race, held at Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek, is one of the largest military events in the Hampton Roads area. Proceeds benefited Armed Services YMCA of Hampton Roads, a military charity devoted to nurturing the well-being of the Hampton Roads military community and all five branches of service.

Winning the top spots reportedly guaranteed GEICO’s teams first dibs on the showers, which you can be sure their friends and family members greatly appreciated.

In The Mud

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Memory of the Month: They might be giants

By on September 26, 2014 at 9:09 AM

Posted in: Odds & Ends, Working at GEICO

Each month, we share an image from GEICO’s past and invite you to exercise your caption-writing skills.

Leo Lorimer old photoThis is the month in which we celebrate GEICO’s birthday, which we call Founders Day. For me, it’s a time to recall the early history of this company, and the people who built the company where I’ve been privileged to work for 30 years.

Which brings me to this photo, shot sometime in the late 1960s; it doesn’t depict any particularly momentous event, but it’s noteworthy just the same. This is one of a surprisingly few photos that include the two men mostly responsible for the beginning of GEICO’s success story.

That’s Leo Goodwin in the center, presenting a bowling trophy to a member of the GEICO bowling league. Goodwin founded GEICO in the mid-1930s and guided it through the lean start-up years, ably assisted by his wife, Lillian. Behind Goodwin is Lorimer Davidson, who became associated with GEICO in the mid-1940s as an investment banker who handled GEICO’s account.

Davidson and Goodwin became fast friends, and Davidson became GEICO’s financial vice president in 1948. This fortuitous pairing coincided with a lengthy stretch of profitable growth for the company until Goodwin decided that, at age 72, he was ready to retire from active management of the company and move into an advisory role.

In 1958, Davidson was named the new president of GEICO. He would oversee another 12 years of great prosperity for the company before he, too, chose to retire. None of the next four men who held the top job at GEICO after Davidson’s retirement would serve the company in that role for a longer stretch of time.

GEICO celebrates its 78th birthday this month. Our recent history, which includes us becoming the nation’s second-largest auto insurer, is pretty impressive. But I can’t help but wonder where we might be without the vision and leadership of Leo Goodwin and Lorimer Davidson, who steered us through our first 32 years.

What do you suppose this bowler would say?

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GEICO recognized for support of the military

By on September 23, 2014 at 2:29 PM

Posted in: Marketing & Communications, Working at GEICO

Patriot Day CeremonySince GEICO opened in 1936, military personnel – whether active duty, guard, reserve or retired – have held a special place among policyholders. Today, GEICO supports the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, the USO, Armed Services YMCA, Tragedy Assistance Program, and The Fisher House Foundation. On Patriot Day this month, Warner Robins Air Force Base personnel visited GEICO’s Macon, Georgia, office and presented GEICO with an award for its “Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve.”

Amanda McNair was among the presenters. She is a service representative in the Macon office AND a technical sergeant in the Air Force Reserves, who reports to Warner Robins Air Force base for her reserve duty. In his comments during the brief presentation ceremony, the base’s senior representative, Major Steve Miner, the 413 Force Support Flight Commander, explained that McNair has informed him of all GEICO has done to support her, not only by facilitating the ease of her leave but by ensuring her transition back into the GEICO family was smooth. Major Miner also mentioned that many other reserve members at his base work at GEICO and have also spoken highly of the support the company provides.

After the awards were presented, Joe Easterling, GEICO’s health services & leave administration supervisor, closed the ceremony by thanking the Air Force personnel and expressing GEICO’s pride in being recognized for its support of the military.

“Having served in the USAFR,” Easterling said, “I know the difficulties that those who serve in the Armed Forces have to face. The real honor belongs to those who serve and the sacrifices they make, having to transition between their military duties and their civilian jobs, which is no easy task. I am proud to work for a company where supporting the armed forces is a top priority.”

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GEICO’s Fredericksburg, Virginia, office turns 20

By on September 17, 2014 at 3:48 PM

Posted in: Working at GEICO

FOBWe love our celebrations at GEICO, and we had a milestone anniversary to celebrate this summer. Our regional headquarters facility in Fredericksburg, Virginia – where I worked until just a couple of months ago – turned 20 years old, and associates there enjoyed a monthlong celebration that included contests, cook-outs and much more. My former colleagues are full of GEICO Pride!

Interesting facts about the office:

  • Fburg20GEICO’s Fredericksburg office has been voted a “Best Place to Work” in Virginia for the past three years.
  • We employ nearly 4,000 associates in Fredericksburg … and we’re looking to hire more!
  • Each floor of the main building is almost the size of a soccer field.
  • This office contains a gym, a Starbucks and its own cafeteria.
  • It is conveniently located within an hour’s drive of Washington, D.C.

What our Fredericksburg associates say:

Stephanie Payne (Service Supervisor)

What is your favorite memory at GEICO?

My favorite memory at GEICO would be the first profit-sharing meeting I attended. That was the first experience where I knew I was working for a special company. The excitement and team atmosphere made me feel I finally found my career and I choose the best company to work for!

How have you made a difference at GEICO?

Being a supervisor, my ultimate goal is to ensure great experiences for our customers and to develop agents while guiding them to achieve their goals! When I achieve both, it’s not only rewarding for me, but it’s a huge reward for the company! Gaining net promoters by developing agents into becoming advocates for excellent customer service is a win-win!

Nikki Smet (Service)

What’s your all-time favorite moment at GEICO?

My favorite moment at GEICO was when Fredericksburg hit 1 million policyholders and we had a huge celebration!

What keeps you at GEICO?

The opportunities to succeed within the company.

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