Since the late 1980s, Progressive Casualty Insurance Company has maintained a strong position in the nonstandard auto-insurance market (auto insurance for high-risk drivers). Progressive’s goals in the 1990s are to expand its insurance coverage to include standard and preferred customers (drivers with clean driving records and no accidents). The company never advertised before 1994; as a result, consumer awareness has been very low. Progressive faces strong competition in a varied insurance industry. Companies like Allstate, the nation’s largest underwriter of nonstandard auto insurance, and State Farm, with 21.1% total market share, present a challenge to Progressive as the company strives to make its products available to all drivers. The case focuses on building the company’s brand through advertising and enhancing product differentiation through technology. A teaching note is available to registered faculty, along with a video supplement to enhance student learning.
Darden Business Publishing – University of Virginia