Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Downtown Springs winds up in national commercial

BILL RADFORD Updated: December 15, 2011 at 12:00 am

A new advertising campaign by Progressive Insurance features a character performing “random acts of savings” — including in Colorado Springs.

The ad campaign includes a commercial featuring the character known as The Messenger — who was in the Springs last March — offering to feed parking meters for people downtown. The “Feed the Meters” commercial began airing early this month and is being shown nationally. While it doesn’t identify the Springs, locals will quickly recognize downtown.

The Messenger represents a Progressive customer who is so passionate about his experience with the insurance company that he wants to spread the message — and the money he has saved on his auto insurance — wherever he goes.

“With the hundreds I’ve saved at Progressive, this meter is on me,” he tells one man in the Springs commercial.

The character first appeared in a series of regular scripted ads that began airing late last year. The new campaign, which launched last month, sends him out on the road in his Pontiac GTO to help real people in situations that are unscripted and unrehearsed. He might, for example, fill up someone’s gas tank, pick up the tab for their morning coffee or cover their baggage charges at the airport. 

“When he appeared in public, people instantly gravitated to him,” said Jeff Charney, chief marketing officer of Progressive, in a press release announcing the new campaign. “I’ve never seen anything like it. He struck a chord, and we quickly realized that The Messenger — and his message — works best when we simply let him interact with real people in real situations.”

One woman in the Springs commercial is certainly a fan.

“You’re sexy,” the woman identified only as Random Lady 2 in a transcript of the ad tells The Messenger.

To view the commercial, go here.

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