By Guest Blogger on January 29, 2014 at 12:22 PM
Posted in: Marketing & Communications, On the Web
By guest blogger Tony Blue, public relations
Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl X comes to GEICO Stadium on Feb. 2
Have you noticed that GEICO has an affinity for animals? From the Gecko and Maxwell the pig to the rowing Guinea Pigs and the Camel, the company, its customers and associates have a general affection for critters. This February, that trend continues in a major way. GEICO has the pick of the litter, sponsoring Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl X at GEICO Stadium on Sunday, Feb. 2, at 3 p.m.
What is the Puppy Bowl, you ask? The Puppy Bowl is a TV program on Animal Planet that mimics that other big game, with teams of rambunctious pups, trained by the GEICO Gecko, at play inside a stadium. The puppies featured in the Puppy Bowl are from shelters and the show provides viewers with information on adoption. Puppy Bowl I aired in February 2005.
Fast-forward to 2014: Animal Planet has pulled out all the stops for Puppy Bowl X, going so far as to recreate an actual game-day experience, featuring NFL-like in-game segments, online interaction and profiles of the puppy participants.
And for fans just nipping at the chance to interact with the pups before the big game, there is a Fantasy Puppy League. Animal Planet is providing viewers with the opportunity to pick their top dog in the first-ever fantasy draft. Fans can view the pedigree of 11 all-star puppies and draft their own team before the big game. On game day, fantasy participants can keep track of their pooches with on-screen live stat updates and an online leaderboard.
Animal Planet will unleash a new Water Bowl Cam and viewers will be able to watch slow-motion replays of your favorite canines with the first ever Too Cute Cam. And if you think it’s just about the dogs, at halftime of Puppy Bowl X, cat lovers will be in for a special treat as Animal Planet introduces a brand new “All Kitty” Halftime Show featuring the Internet sensation, “Keyboard Cat.” He will lend a paw as he performs his rendition of Bruno Mars’ “Locked Out of Heaven.”
Thirty kitten all-stars will also perform an epic domino topple and a kitten daredevil will be making a grand entrance into GEICO Stadium via parachute. And what is a football game without cheerleaders? It will be pure puppy love when the members of the Penguin Cheerleading Squad shake their tail feathers on the sidelines.
At the end of Puppy Bowl X, fans will also have a chance to select the “MVP” (Most Valuable Puppy) with interactive voting. Animal Planet will also feature two Top Ten Lists (Top Ten Puppies and Top Ten Goofiest Plays), highlighting some of the most memorable moments captured from Puppy Bowls I-X.
And just in case you want to know more, you’ll be able to go to the dogs online via the Puppy Feed, where you’ll find more canine cuteness. And don’t miss the special, Dog Years: Life after Puppy Bowl that takes a look at some of the puppies (past and present) that have participated in the Puppy Bowl in their new adult lives. A Pup Close and Personal segment will follow the lives of current puppies and their unique journeys from the shelter to Puppy Bowl X. In addition, stay tuned until the end of the game to find out where some of your favorite publicity hounds are now with a special adoption update.
Don’t forget! Puppy Bowl X at GEICO Stadium will air on Animal Planet, Sunday, Feb. 2, at 3 p.m. Let’s hope it isn’t raining cats and dogs.
By Greg Marsh on January 27, 2014 at 2:21 PM
Posted in: Odds & Ends
Each month, we share an image from GEICO’s past and invite you to exercise your caption-writing skills.
This one really speaks to me. You see, in a former life, during my two-year “sabbatical” from college during my freshman year, one of the jobs I had was as a security guard. I WAS this guy for a while, carrying a device like the one he’s toting here, patrolling my company’s headquarters in the wee hours of the night.
Before the days of security cameras, we’d use keys hung here and there around the building to time-stamp a card inside that device. Should there have been a break-in or some other emergency on the grounds, we’d be able to show the authorities (and our insurer) that we’d done our duty to protect the property.
Insurance companies, too, are in the security business, in a sense. Not that we’ll come to your house and stand guard over your property, but we DO provide you with the security of knowing your property’s protected. Insurance means that you’ll be compensated for expenses you incur as a result of damage, theft or injury (subject to the policy terms and limits, of course).
What do you suppose this guy was thinking as he made his rounds? Was he contemplating his next meal, or the errand his wife asked him to run after his shift ended? Or just maybe he’s anticipating lying down for a minute or two on the couch in the motor pool, like I did once. Boy, was my boss livid when he found me there, sound asleep!
By Guest Blogger on January 23, 2014 at 12:38 PM
Posted in: IT @ GEICO, Working at GEICO
By Joel Jones, director of recruiting, guest GEICO Careers blogger
Not long after New Year’s Day, I was in the locker room and overheard two fellow gym rats discussing how crowded the gym gets with all of the New Year’s “resolutioners.” It reminded me of a quote I once read, “A New Year’s resolution is something that goes in one year and out the next.” I couldn’t help thinking how unproductive that attitude is.
Sure, a lot of people – most, maybe – have a hard time keeping their resolutions, but how many of them would be more likely to follow through with just a little bit of encouragement? I got to thinking, what about those people who’ve made “finding a new job in 2014” their resolution? Failing to follow through may not be an option.
If that’s you, I’m here to offer some encouragement: YOU CAN DO IT! And GEICO may be able to help.
Maybe you’ve been out of the workforce for some time or haven’t found that perfect fit. Maybe you already have a job and, for whatever reason, you’re looking for a change. Perhaps you’re a recent (or not so recent) college graduate looking for that first real job.
Here’s some good news. In 2014, GEICO will hire more than 5,000 new associates in 15 locations across the country, and most of our new hires will join the “GEICO family” in sales, customer service, claims and auto damage.
But wait – GEICO isn’t just insurance jobs.
In our Washington, D.C., area corporate office, we also have many opportunities for IT professionals, legal staff, actuaries and business analysts. Occasionally, we even hire financial analysts, communications and marketing professionals, and accountants.
Throughout 2014, our recruiters plan to visit hundreds of college campuses looking for bright, motivated seniors and alumni to join our leadership programs and paid internships. This year, we’ll hire more than 300 associates into these full-time, fast-track programs and develop them into the next generation of GEICO’s business and IT leaders.
Our CEO, Tony Nicely, has said on a number of occasions, “It’s a GREAT time to work at GEICO.” He’s right! So if you’re someone who’s made a “New Year, New Career” resolution, don’t be like the estimated 92 percent of people who fail to follow through. Let us help make this the year that you find your new career.
Who knew that an insurance company had so many different career paths? Visit geico.jobs to learn more about opportunities at GEICO.
By Shannon Smedstad on January 20, 2014 at 2:53 PM
Posted in: Working at GEICO
Think car insurance is boring stuff? It might be at some companies, but there was a lot going on at GEICO in 2013 and even more excitement expected in 2014. If there was one word to sum up last year, it would be GROWTH.
This past year, GEICO crossed the 12-millionth policy threshold; we’re one of the largest auto insurers in America, and we’re the fastest-growing. Due to this exceptional growth, GEICO also opened two new offices; an auto claims office near Houston, Texas, was announced in December and a customer service center outside of Indianapolis, Indiana, opened in March 2013. This expansion is a result of the sensational work done by our associates to keep GEICO on the path of profitable growth, while delighting millions of customers.
With all of this good news come opportunities for current associates to advance their careers. It also creates possibilities for job seekers. In 2014, GEICO’s recruiters will interview college graduates for full-time positions in the Management Development Program and the new Technology Development Program.
Want to hear more?
Check out the first GEICO Careers Monthly video, and meet Catherine, one of our motivated and hardworking associates. And, keep an eye out for a special ce-webrity guest appearance…
The New Year could bring a new career.
GEICO is looking for great people to join our 15 major locations and field offices across the country. We have opportunities in sales, claims, IT, actuary, leadership programs and more. Interested job seekers are encouraged to visit geico.jobs.
By Guest Blogger on January 15, 2014 at 4:16 PM
Posted in: Safety
Hey, students: have you created your hip T-shirt design or produced your rocking music video for GEICO’s Distracted Driving Contest yet? If not, there’s still time to enter – but not much! The deadline is Friday, Jan. 24!
Young artists, ages 6-18, are invited to submit a T-shirt design that emphasizes the message about the dangers of distracted driving. The design can be hand-drawn or computer-generated, and can be submitted online through the GEICO T-shirt Design Contest website.
And for our fellow filmmakers, GEICO wants teens, ages 14-18, to produce their own music video that showcases the dangers of distracted driving. Contestants must use one of the pre-recorded soundtracks on the music contest website.
A $1,500 cash prize will be awarded to the music video winner and a $500 cash prize will go to the T-shirt design winner. Finalists will also win cash prizes, too.
So what exactly is distracted driving? Here are some messages you can use in your work:
- Texting while driving
- Talking on the phone while driving
- Eating or drinking while driving
- Adjusting the radio or GPS while driving
- Shooting video and taking photos while driving
- Anything that requires you to take your hands, eyes or mind off the road
For more information about guidelines, contest rules and submission, please visit www.geicosafetycontest.com.
So, which contest are you – or your kids, grandkids, nieces or nephews – going to enter?
By John Fonville on January 6, 2014 at 8:55 AM
Posted in: Odds & Ends
It’s common knowledge (and a little disheartening) that as soon as you purchase a new car it depreciates by thousands of dollars as soon as you drive it off the dealership lot. But which cars depreciate the least?
For 50 years, ALG has been the industry benchmark for calculating residual values on vehicles. ALG recently published its 2014 results, and they show Honda and Mercedes-Benz won the prize for best mainstream brands – but that doesn’t necessarily apply to YOUR Honda or Mercedes. To learn more and see the entire list from 2014 and previous years, check out the full article on GEICO Now.
By Guest Blogger on December 30, 2013 at 9:38 AM
Posted in: Claims, On the Web, Sales and Service
By guest blogger Tony Blue, public relations
As consumers like me continue to migrate to mobile devices, more and more companies are grasping the importance of mobile development to reach customers who like their information “to go.” I’m proud to work for such a company.
GEICO’s mobile platform continues to evolve with its ongoing development of the innovative GEICO App. I’ve watched the evolution of the GEICO App over the years and have had it on my smartphone for some time, but it wasn’t until I was faced with a traffic accident that I truly appreciated how much easier the app made my life.
On a rain-soaked day, during the morning rush hour, I was hit from the back by a dump truck at a stoplight. After the initial shock of being in the accident wore off, I was able to use the GEICO App to exchange insurance information with the other driver, start the claim process to get my car repaired, and also notify a tow truck to remove my car from the scene. From that day forward, I was sold on its efficiency and usefulness.
Industry analyst firm Forrester Research has also taken notice. Forrester recently awarded GEICO the highest overall score in its November report, 2013 US Mobile Auto Insurance Functionality Rankings. I believe that earning this top honor affirms that the GEICO mobile team understands what consumers want, and they’re working hard to ensure that the GEICO App provides the absolute best mobile experience for our policyholders.
By Nathan Erb on December 23, 2013 at 9:51 AM
Posted in: Odds & Ends
When I was in college, I worked at a restaurant that had a holiday playlist of about 10 songs that was on repeat from Thanksgiving until Christmas. This meant I’d hear the same version of “Hey, Santa!” by Carnie and Wendy Wilson up to 25 times during one shift.
Miraculously, despite that experience, I have nothing against the traditional versions of holiday songs that every radio station plays. But I think we could all use something new this year, so here are 13 songs from bands I enjoy year-round to add a little variety to your playlist.
My Morning Jacket – “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”
LCD Soundsystem – “Oh You (Christmas Blues)”
She & Him – “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”
The Head and the Heart – “Winter Song”
Fun. – “Sleigh Ride”
The Shins – “Wonderful Christmastime”
Death Cab for Cutie – “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)”
Islands – “Cold Again”
Sufjan Stevens – “Jingle Bells”
The Flaming Lips – “Little Drummer Boy”
!!! – “And Anyway It’s Christmas”
The Killers – “A Great Big Sled”
The Walkmen – “In the New Year”
Hopefully this list helps you discover some new music this year. Share your favorite holiday songs in the comments!
By Guest Blogger on December 20, 2013 at 7:41 AM
Posted in: Claims, Odds & Ends
I love how GEICO continues to find ways to give back to its local communities, so I was especially pleased when I recently heard about how one of GEICO’s auto damage managers helped make spirits bright in Louisiana during this season of giving.
Family Promise of Ouachita, a nonprofit that provides support to help families find employment, recently received a gift from GEICO: a 2007 Chevrolet Silverado 1500.
Through the National Auto Body Council’s Recycled Rides program, GEICO partnered with Performance Finishes to repair and refurbish the vehicle to help the organization fulfill its mission of serving at-risk families in the community.
Melvin Ingram, GEICO’s auto damage manager, presented the truck to Sandra Jones, executive director of Family Promise of Ouachita, on Thursday, Dec. 12, at Performance Finishes Collision Facility, located in Lafayette, La. Representatives from the auto repair shop and Family Promise also attended the event.
“We are pleased to participate in this effort that helps support underserved communities,” said Ingram. “This vehicle donation will allow Family Promise to continue the work of making a difference in our communities.”
Without reliable transportation, Family Promise wouldn’t be able to complete its mission in helping at-risk families transition to successful, sustainable independence. I’m glad to be a part of a company that continues to give, especially during this time of year.
By Nathan Erb on December 17, 2013 at 10:10 AM
Posted in: Safety
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Much of the country is already experiencing cold temperatures and winter storms – we certainly are in the Washington, D.C., area – and the challenging driving conditions they bring. Preparation and knowing what to do in case of an emergency can help you stay safe even in the worst climates. Heated seats don’t hurt, either.
- Make sure your vehicle is in good condition. You (or your mechanic) should check tire pressure and wear, battery charge, fluid levels and all belts and hoses. A well-maintained car will be less likely to fail when the temperatures drop.
- Keep a “survival kit” in your car in case of emergency. It should include a flashlight, ice scraper and snow brush, small shovel, sand or kitty litter, cell phone and charger, blankets and warm clothes, matches, road flares and non-perishable food.
- Visibility is crucial, so make sure your wipers are working, the wiper blades are in good condition and your washer fluid is full before driving on salt-covered, slushy roads.
- Is your car covered in snow and ice? Start your car and turn on the front and rear defrosters to help soften the frozen stuff. It will also help warm up your car while you work to clean it off – in some jurisdictions, failing to clean off your car can be illegal. And don’t forget the roof; ice flying off of your car on the highway can be a hazard to other drivers.
- If your car skids, follow these steps:
- Don’t panic.
- Don’t slam on the brakes.
- Take your foot off the gas.
- Steer your car in the direction you’re skidding until you regain control.
- Stuck? Avoid the temptation to spin your wheels; you’ll only dig yourself into a deeper hole. Clear the snow behind and in front of all four tires, and liberally spread sand or kitty litter in front of and behind the drive wheels. To get moving, drive in as straight a line as possible to minimize resistance.
Check out more safety tips at geico.com! And don’t forget to share your winter driving tips in the comments.
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