Securian, the St. Paul-based life insurance and financial services company, added the word "Financial" to its name on Monday as part of a rebranding and marketing campaign aimed at reaching consumers directly.
The 138-year-old company, for decades known as Minnesota Mutual Life Insurance, unveiled a new Securian Financial logo and launched a national advertising campaign that will include spots on ABC-TV's "Good Morning America."
"Familiarity is really our goal," Ann Pilon McGarry, Securian Financial's vice president of enterprise marketing and branding, said in an interview. "We want people to know our name but most importantly we need for them to know our name and what we do."
Securian Financial's new brand campaign, "Every Moment Counts," will debut Wednesday with national television and digital spots as well as some regional radio, billboards and print ads, including in the Star Tribune and elsewhere in the Twin Cities, Chicago, Denver and Houston areas.
Securian Financial is also partnering with the Minnesota Twins, Chicago White Sox, Colorado Rockies and Houston Astros baseball teams to sponsor a variety of family-themed activities in and outside of the teams' ballparks. Securian Financial, which already sponsors the Securian Club at the Saints' CHS Field ballpark in St. Paul, is looking at the possibility of doing other facility sponsorships, McGarry said.
The branding push has been 18 months in the making. The new marketing campaign signals a shift in focus for Securian Financial, which provides insurance, investment and retirement services.
"Historically, we have been a business-to-business brand, where we have really focused on leveraging the brands of our distribution partners whether that be advisers or financial institutions or employer groups," McGarry said. "In the past, we've relied on them … and now we believe, given the changes in the marketplace, that it is critical for us to have that consumer brand."
McGarry acknowledged some consumers didn't know what Securian does, with there even being some confusion that the company provides actual security, which is why "Financial" was added.
As other financial services companies have invested in marketing and more consumer-friendly brand identities, Securian needed to do the same to remain competitive, McGarry said.
With the help of Minneapolis-based Roundpeg Consulting, Securian has redefined its target market as "family investors," people who always put family first and who are financially responsible but value experiences over material things.
"Most financial services advertising focuses on preparing for some day off in the distant future," said Joe Cecere, president and chief creative officer of Little & Co., the Minneapolis branding agency behind Securian Financial's new brand, in a statement. "Securian Financial is differentiating itself by saying customers can — and are — enjoying the moments we all experience every day."
The rebranding wasn't only for customers but also to help Securian with its recruitment of new employees. Securian employs about 2,700 people in St. Paul.
"Recruiting is really tight in the Twin Cities right now given our very low unemployment rate," McGarry said. "So Securian needs to have a brand so that potential employees understand why they should want to work for Securian."
The rebranding comes on the heels of strong financial numbers. Last year, the company's earnings increased 28 percent to $259 million, with revenue rising 4 percent to $5.1 billion. On Monday, Securian Financial was named to the Fortune 500 for the first time in its history.