Dogs Train Their Owners to Stop Driving Distracted in Geico's Amusing New Campaign

'Smartdogs' won't work, but something else will

Humans are usually the ones training dogs. But let's face it. They're so much better than we are in so many ways—they could teach us a thing or two. 

Perhaps not about distracted driving, but that's the theme of The Martin Agency's new campaign for Geico regardless. Check out the amusing spot below, in which a team of "Smartdogs" receive some serious training to knock smartphones out of people's hands when they're behind the wheel. 

Introducing Smartdogs - GEICO Insurance

The ad is timed Distracted Driving Awareness Month and is aimed at curbing a despressing statistic—that nine people die every single day in the U.S. because of distracted driving. 

"We're clearly not listening to people giving us the shaking finger of shame for driving distracted," Martin art director Rushil Nadkarni tells Muse. "That led us to the insight: We need to get to people through a spokesperson who's not a person at all. Something so lovable you can't ignore it. The Smartdogs program isn't real, of course, but hopefully it gets people to pay attention to Geico's simple tip: Turn on the 'Do Not Disturb While Driving' mode on your smartphone." 

"We decided to stay away from fear. And we're promoting something that's actionable," adds creative director Neel Williams. "There's finally a simple step you can take to curb distracted driving. The majority of phones have a 'Do Not Disturb While Driving' mode, but relatively few people know about it—and fewer actively use it. If even a small percentage of drivers start activating it as a result, it could make a huge impact toward saving lives."

The spot was directed by Park Pictures directing duo Terri Timely, who also did Geico's famous "Unskippable" spots a few years back. The campaign points viewers to geico.com/distracted.

CREDITS

Client: Geico
Joe Pusateri: Vice President, Marketing 
Amy Furman: Assistant Vice President, Marketing 
Gary Aurand: Brand Team Manager 
Tom Perlozzo: Brand Team Senior Supervisor 
Brighid Griffin: Brand Team Planner 
Olivia Ashby: Brand Team Planner 
Tim Ware: Brand Team Planner
Catherine Hefferan: Brand Team Buyer 

Agency: The Martin Agency
Chief Creative Officer: Karen Costello
Executive Creative Director: Jerry Hoak
SVP, Group Creative Director:: Steve Bassett
VP, Creative Director: Neel Williams
VP, Creative Director: Justin Harris
Senior Copywriter: Dave Ashton
Art Director: Rushil Nadkarni
Planning Director: Lauren Prociv
SVP, Executive Producer: Kerry Ayers
Senior Content Producer: Brian Fox
Senior Content Producer: Heather Collier
Business Affairs Supervisor: Suzanne Wieringo 
Senior Financial Affairs Manager: Amy Trenz
SVP, Group Account Director: Matt Mattox
Account Supervisor: Jon Glomb
Account Executive: Allie Waller
Account Coordinator: Abbey Reddington
Account Coordinator: Yoon Ko
Project Manager: Stephanie Ashworth
Financial Account Supervisor: Monica Cox
Head of Integrated Production: Tasha Dean 

Production Company: Park Pictures
Director: Terri Timely
Director of Photography: Donavan Sell
Exec. Producer: Jackie Kelman Bisbee
Exec. Producer: Dinah Rodriguez
Head of Production: Anne Bobroff
Line Producer: David Lambert

Editorial Company: Cut + Run
Editor: Frank Effron
Assistant Editor: Kelly Henson
Executive Producer: Amburr Farls
Producer: Brian Mulvey

Color & Finishing
VFX & Finishing: ARTJAIL
Head of Production: John Skeffington
Producer: Perry Tate
Colorist: Clinton Homuth

Sound
Audio Post Facility: Heard City
Executive Producer: Jackie James
Sound Designer and Mixer: Mike Vitacco

Music
Music: Butter Music & Sound
Executive Producer: Ian Jeffreys
Producer: Kristin Kuraishi

Tim Nudd
Tim Nudd is editor in chief of the Clio Awards.