Short History of the company
To get a lesson on niche marketing and working hard through challenges such as wars and depressions, following the chronology of two law school students, is the right place to start. Joseph Lewis and Jack Green got together and founded Progressive Mutual Insurance Company on March 10, 1937. Tasked by Ohio’s Attorney General, they had been investigating some seemingly shady salesmen might be scamming the public with an automobile service contract. While investigating them they actually found that they liked their ‘scheme’ and the salesmen. Their idea was based on selling insurance to the average driver. At the time only wealthy drivers were able to afford auto insurance. The target market of the two young lawyers with a dream was to make their product affordable to anyone at a price anyone could afford.
They were able to put the shady company out of business and run with the idea on a gift of faith of $10,000 from Joseph Lewis’ mother in law. This bought them the license to do business. Things were going well during the Great Depression as the need and the low prices appealed to an economy of careful drivers who were pinching their pennies. Due to poor business practices the start up capital had dwindled to $1000. Legend has it that Joe and Jack headed south to shoot some craps in Covington, Kentucky and was able to win back their start up funds. They promised themselves never to gamble on the company financials again.
One of the innovations crafted by Progressive was their insurance that allowed premiums to be paid in installments. Progressive was also the first auto insurance company to offer drive in claims service. It was ideas such as these the propelled Progressive Mutual Insurance to grow an average of 17% each year with a net worth of $14 billion dollars.
Pros of the Company
The company offers rates lower than many other insurance companies. One customer was very satisfied with the company since she switched from Nationwide and was able to save more than $1000 on her insurance bills for auto and home.
Cons of Company
Since the early days, Joe and Jack understood that selling policies to good drivers and not having to pay out claims was the way to the company’s success. Claimants feel that these claims agents are slow and unresponsive to anyone trying to make a claim. One consumer filing against a Progressive client spent 4 months making many phone calls to the claims department. She finally had to have her lawyer take over to get the claim settled.
Special Services offered
Installment driven cheap custom policies and Concierge claim service.
All states are covered by Progressive Auto insurance with some limitations based on the state.
Overall rating and satisfaction by consumers
Customer had more positive review for Progressive by 81% over the negative reviews of 19%. Customers love to save money and were generally happy with the customer service offered as well.