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By Audrey Kemp, LA Reporter

November 27, 2023 | 4 min read

In a departure from traditional insurance advertising, the ‘What You Leave Behind’ campaign reimagines approaching the topic of death through the profound connections people have with their family heirlooms.

Death is an inevitable part of life, yet it remains a topic no one wants to discuss, whether it’s dealing with the loss of a loved one or confronting one’s own mortality. Evidently, this phenomenon poses a marketing challenge for most life insurance companies.

Such is the reason why the 116-year-old insurance brand Amica took a fresh approach with its new campaign, ‘What You Leave Behind.’ The project, comprising three short films and an experiential event, seeks to help people find meaning and beauty in the objects left behind by someone who has passed away—be it a well-worn drum kit, a bookmarked recipe book or an antique film camera. It also compels audiences to consider fortifying their own legacy with life insurance to assist and support their loved ones in the future.

An extension of Amica’s ‘Empathy is our best policy’ brand platform, What You Leave Behind deviates from traditional life insurance advertising, which typically emphasizes policy terms, rates and protection.

“‘What You Leave Behind’ uses a storytelling approach to make the concept of life insurance more relatable,” explains Tory Pachis, senior vice-president of marketing & communications at Amica Insurance. “It [tells] powerful, real-life stories designed to spark conversation about the legacies we leave behind – and how important it is to leave loved ones supported and protected after we’re gone.”

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Mother in New York, Media by Mother and Warner Bros. Discovery’s Courageous brand studio jointly created the campaign, while three different directors were enlisted for each spot to tell each individual’s story.

‘The Drums,’ the series’ first short, for example, was directed by Courageous’ Kathryn Dellamaggiore and introduces viewers to 49-year-old Chris Lotito, whose father taugth him how to play the drums. After Chris lost his father to Lou Gerhrig’s disease, his drum kit went missing in a move, leading him on a decades-long journey to find them again. Chris’ search miraculously ended when he found the exact same drum kit on eBay on his father’s birthday.

“Life insurance, itself, is this whole daunting, confusing thing for a lot of people. We also don’t think about it, because who likes thinking about death?” says Paul Furia, head of content and creative packaging at Media by Mother. “But Amica knows that taking care of someone after they’re gone is the most empathetic thing any of us could ever do, and life insurance is a real legacy one leaves behind... So, our goal [with this project] was to pivot the conversation away from death and mortality ... to helping people contemplate what their legacy is going to be.”

A final component of the campaign occured on October 20 in Boston, Massachusetts: an immersive activation that allowed passersby to describe the stories behind their most cherished heirlooms.

What You Leave Behind’s three shorts will live across a branded digital hub on Amica’s website, with 15 and 30-second cutdowns to be distributed across Warner Bros. Discovery’s ad-supported digital and linear platforms.

Consumers are encouraged to submit their personal journeys through love, loss and items left behind with the brand on social media using the #WYLB hashtag or by sending an email to stories@amicawhatyouleavebehind.com. Select stories will be featured on the campaign’s digital hub.

Submission guidelines are available at amicawhatyouleavebehind.com

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