The Martin Agency Makes ‘Unskippable’ Pre-Roll Ads for Geico

By Erik Oster 

The hardest thing about creating a pre-roll ad is attempting to find a way of getting people to not skip it after its first five seconds (during which time viewers unable to skip). As Adweek points out, according to some measures “94 percent of pre-roll gets skipped immediately after the first five seconds.” So, for its latest pre-roll ads for Geico, The Martin Agency decided to make ads that were “Unskippable.”

But how exactly do you accomplish that? In “Family” and “High Five,” The Martin Agency shows the “end” of the ad, followed by the message, “You can’t skip this Geico ad, because it’s already over.” In the aforementioned “Family” a mother says, “Don’t thank me, thank the savings” as the Geico logo comes onscreen, accompanied by the voiceover message. The family then attempts to sit perfectly still for the remainder of the 30 seconds, as their dog goes to town on their dinner.

The joke is kind of funny the first time around, but already feels a bit tired in “High Five.” It follows the same basic formula as its predecessor, only with two guys grilling and different shennanigans after the five second mark. While you have to give The Martin Agency some credit for finding a way to make “Unskippable” pre-roll ads, we have a feeling that, since this is Geico, the schtick is going to be milked for all it’s worth, until we can’t stand it anymore. We wouldn’t be surprised if this campaign spawns its share of imitators as well.


Client: Geico
Vice President, Marketing: Ted Ward
Mgr., Broadcast Production and Agency Relations: Amy Hooks
Marketing Buyer: Katherine Kalec
Marketing Buyer: Brighid Griffin
Marketing Coordinator: Thomas Perlozzo

Agency: The Martin Agency, Richmond, Va.
Chief Creative Officer: Joe Alexander
SVP/Group Creative Director: Steve Bassett
SVP/Group Creative Director: Wade Alger
VP/Associate Creative Director: Neel Williams
Associate Creative Director: Mauricio Mazzariol
VP/Executive Producer: Brett Alexander
Broadcast Producer: Liza Miller
Junior Broadcast Producer: Coleman Sweeney
Business Affairs Supervisor: Suzanne Wieringo
Sr. Integrated Production Business Manager: Amy Trenz
Financial Manager: Monica Cox
SVP/ Group Account Director: Brad Higdon
Account Supervisor: Josh Lybarger
Account Executive: Allison Hensley
Senior Project Manager: Karen McEwan

Production Company: Park Pictures
Director: Terri Timely
Executive Producer: Justin Pollock

Executive Producer: Jackie Kelman Bisbee
Line Producer: David Lambert

Editorial Company: Whitehouse Post
Editor: Caleb Hepler
Executive Producer: Kristin Branstetter
Producer: Jojo Sheer

Telecine: Co3
Colorist: Tim Mascik

Post Facility: Running with Scissors
Flame Artist: Chris Hagen
Executive Producer: Scott Friske
Senior Producer: Cheryl Lage

Music: APM

Audio Post Company: Rainmaker Studios
Engineer/Mixer: Jeff McManus