Esure drops Michael Winner to focus on product benefits

Michael Winner has been dropped as the face of insurance brand Esure for the second time in three years, this time to be replaced by aliens.

The campaign, which breaks later this week, will promote Esure’s improved benefits for policyholders who are hit by uninsured drivers – such as a UFO – or whose cars have been vandalised. It will have the strapline: “Esure. Championing your no claims discount”.

Esure brand manager Lee Crawley says the campaign marks a “departure” from its previous advertising, and focuses on the product benefits and customer service that Esure offers.

The ad will be shown across ITV, Channel 4, Five and digital channels. The call centre agent who appears within the spot will also feature on Esure’s ITV national weather sponsorship idents.

Winner, famous for his “Calm down, dear” catchphrase, was dropped from Esure’s advertising in favour of animated icon Mister Mouse in 2005 (MW May 26, 2005) but returned just 18 months later (MW November 23, 2006).

Winner began directing and starring in the Esure ads in 2002 after the insurer took its advertising in house. A company spokeswoman says: “We would never say never to working with Michael Winner.”

Esure was launched in 2001 as a joint venture with Halifax owner HBOS. Its brands also include Sheila’s Wheels and First Alternative.

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