Alarming New Study Finds You See More of Flo Than Your Mother


A new Zebra original survey finds that Americans get more face time with Progressive's perky spokesperson, Flo, than they do their own flesh and blood.

Flo Vs. Mom

By now it’s no secret that we have an active interest in all things car insurance here at Quoted, and perhaps no car insurance mascot is more easily recognizable than Progressive’s Flo. (Except maybe that cheeky gecko.)

So when it came time to brainstorm the Zebra’s most recent round of data and research, what came up in our round-table discussion surprised even us: We know that giant insurance companies spend untold sums of money on their advertising budgets—we’re talking in the Billions with a B—but we wondered what the true effect of all of that investment was in terms of consumer experience. Starting to work in car insurance can make you realize just how often you come face-to-face with a car insurance advertisement, and someone at the table said aloud: “I mean, I feel like I see more of Flo than I do my own Mom.”

An Experiment with Unlikely Results

The curiosity was killing us. And we like data here at The Zebra; data is what drives our comparison engine and allows us to compare more than 200 insurance companies, including all of the major ones (you know, the ones with the giant budgets.)

So we rolled up our sleeves and forked out our own funds to survey 1,600 adults. The results?

It turns out, you actually do spend more minutes each week viewing Progressive’s perky spokeswoman Flo, than you do getting face- or phone-time with your own mother. As outlined in our press release, the numbers break down as follows:

  • On average, even a family living under one roof spends just 30 minutes of quality time together each week. The Zebra-funded study found that grown children in this country—they surveyed 1600 adults between the ages of 21 and 45—call their mothers, it turns out, for just 6 minutes each week, on average.
  • But the average American adult, by contrast, spends 2.46 hours per day watching television. And GEICO, Progressive, and other giant insurance companies each air approximately 55,000 commercials every week. At an average 30-second spot, broken down hourly across seven days, that means that the average adult American sees 8.5 minutes of insurance company commercials each week—a full minute and a half more than they spend catching up with their blood relatives.

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What it Means

It’s not news that both advertising and screen time have saturated our culture and burrowed into the nooks and crannies of both our free time and everything we consume in it. But what is the cumulative effect of all of this exposure? And, maybe more importantly, what is the cumulative effect of the lack of quality time we afford those closest to us?

For more on the survey and the shocking results, check out the press release.