Fortis Bows Corporate Push

Avrett, Free & Ginsberg breaks a gritty corporate image effort next month which showcases the community spirit that inspires financial-services firm Fortis.
Unlike the last campaign, which used the client’s former castle-like logo to convey strength, “Now we are taking a more emotional approach,” said John Stanyon, vice president of advertising at the client. “In the financial services category, strength and stability are [merely] the point of entry.”
Shot in black and white by photographer Leonard Freed, an image of a devastated Sylvan Springs, Ala., appears in one ad. The caption reads, “Strangers become neighbors when the community comes together to rebuild after their town is hit hard by tornadoes.”
Wreckage fills the background as people clear the debris. The ads do not tout specific services. For example, Fortis does not offer disaster insurance, said Stanyon.
A second ad shows students pushing a stalled school bus; a third depicts the start of a race at the Senior Olympics. The tagline: “Solid partners, flexible solutions.” The previous line was, “Solid answers for a changing world.”
The $7-8 million campaign also introduces the company’s new logo–a stylized overhead view of a community. AF&G here also handles placement of the ads, which will break in September editions of Forbes, Fortune and Business Week, among others, and run through 1999.
Fortis provides insurance, employee benefit and investment products.