09:08 AM

State Farm selected as a marketer of the year.

Ad Age selects just 10 organizations for the honor each year.

State Farm® has been named a 2020 Marketer of the Year by Ad Age. The advertising publication said of the organizations honored, "The 10 brands that comprise Ad Age’s 2020 Marketers of the Year list didn’t just survive the pandemic, they thrived." 

And in 2020? What an accomplishment!

“In February, when we refreshed our brand and reintroduced Jake from State Farm, none of us could have imagined what was about to unfold,” said Rand Harbert, Executive Vice President and Chief Agency, Sales and Marketing Officer. “In this unique time, being a good neighbor is more important than ever, and we continue to find new and different ways to tell our story to consumers."

The Ad Age editorial board determines the nominees, so this recognition is especially meaningful because there is no application process in order to be considered. Read the full Ad Age story.

Excerpts from the Ad Age story:

  • In late January, weeks before the pandemic set in, State Farm made a move that would power the insurer through a turbulent year: It rekindled its iconic tagline, “Like a Good Neighbor, State Farm Is There.” The 49-year-old line is among the most recognizable phrases in advertising.
  • In 2020, the 98-year-old company did more than reclaim a piece of its past—it unleashed a modernization program that touched nearly every facet of its business, from overhauling its media investments and ad partnerships to bolstering its digital acumen. In an era when plenty of brands are playing lip service to “agility,” State Farm moved faster than most, getting coronavirus-response ads to air quickly while finding new ways to reach consumers, including moving beyond its normally sports-heavy strategy when leagues shut down earlier this year. The overhaul led to a record year of growth as it added 1.5 million auto policies through November.
  • ...consumers put a premium on brands they can trust. State Farm boosted its loyalty with its "Good Neighbor Relief Program," which has returned $4.2 billion to customers via rate reductions and dividend credits. The program, which began in the early days of the pandemic, was communicated with an ad filmed by State Farm associates from their homes that the insurer turned around within days. While competitors unveiled similar programs, State Farm’s earned a top “A” grade from the Consumer Federation of America. "In this time where people are looking for safety and resilience and some sense of comfort, their marketing has definitely exemplified that," Carney says.
  • State Farm also gained notice by sponsoring late-night talk-show host Jimmy Fallon’s "At Home" edition in April that included the late night talk show host plugging the insurer’s backing of a Red Cross donation program with a handwritten sign. Other sponsorships it struck on the fly included backing a special "Parks and Recreation" reunion on NBC and "The Disney Family Singalong" on

The Ad Age story also called out our ‘The Last Dance’ Deep Fake' commercial.

"State Farm, which typically makes big investments in sports marketing, also found a way to stay top of mind when pro leagues shut down in March and April. Its sponsorship of ESPN’s “Last Dance” Michael Jordan documentary drew major buzz—thanks to an ad from ESPN CreativeWorks that used deepfake technology for an ad showing Kenny Mayne sitting at 1998-era “SportsCenter” anchor desk talking about the Bulls documentary that will hit 22 years later."

'Last Dance Deep Fake' has also garnered other impressive accomplishments:

  • Adweek’s #Adnatomy, a new video series exploring how brands, agencies and production companies continue to make commercials during the pandemic, sat down with the team at ESPN to chat about their much-heralded “Deep Fake” spot with State Farm
  • Hashtag Sports Awards –  Winner, Most Engaging Advertisement – which celebrates the most engaging content, creators and campaigns in sports and entertainment.
  • 2020 Clio Sports Awards –  four Clios, two Gold, two Silver. Clio Sports honors the best in sports advertising and marketing around the world. Annually, the foremost sports business influencers — marketing executives, commissioners, broadcasters and athletes alike — convene to select and celebrate the breakthrough communications that propel the industry forward, inspire a competitive marketplace of ideas and foster meaningful connections within the creative community.
  • The Festival of Media North America Awards – several awards included: Campaign of the Year,  Best Sports/Entertainment, Best Collaboration, and Best Branded Content.. Festival of Media Awards programs have been showcasing the very best in media and marketing campaigns, while upholding and maintaining global industry benchmarks throughout the sector for more than 14 years. 


State Farm donates to the American Marketing Association

In honor of all Ad Age 2020 Marketers of the Year, State Farm donated $50,000 to the American Marketing Association Social Impact Scholarship Fund. It supports the future of the marketing industry community.

The scholarship program recognizes students creating positive change in the marketing profession and the world. The American Marketing Association is dedicated to transforming students into professionals by fostering socially-responsible practices in business and in life.

Jake from State Farm Good Neighbor of the Year People Ad

In the News:


Consumers will continue to hear from State Farm® in a fresh, updated voice and new direction. Visit our Commercials YouTube Channel.


About State Farm®:

For over 100 years, the mission of State Farm has been to help people manage the risks of everyday life, recover from the unexpected and realize their dreams. State Farm and its affiliates are the largest providers of auto and home insurance in the United States. Its more than 19,400 agents and 67,000 employees serve over 91 million policies and accounts – including auto, fire, lifehealth, commercial policies and financial services accounts. Commercial auto insurance, along with coverage for rentersbusiness ownersboats and motorcycles, is also available. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No. 44 on the 2023 Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit

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