Thieman becomes face of Medical Mutual in NW OhioWritten by Duane Ramsey | | email@example.com
Gary Thieman has become the face of Medical Mutual in the company’s latest advertising campaign, launched to increase its brand awareness and business in Northwest Ohio.
“I really don’t covet my picture being in newspaper ads and my voice on radio but people really seem to like the campaign as we’ve had some positive comments about it,” Thieman said.
“We’ve had a pretty darn good year in 2011, one of the best we’ve ever had, and I’d like to think some of it is the result of the campaign,” he said.
Official year-end results for 2011 will not be available until later in January, said Thieman, senior vice president of sales and customer relations for the Northwest Ohio region for Medical Mutual.
After a strategic review of what Medical Mutual is in Northwest Ohio, the company began looking for a strong leader for the region, according to Jared Chaney, executive vice president and chief marketing and communications officer for Medical Mutual of Ohio.
“Gary is the one we found and we could not have made a better choice,” Chaney said.
The company had not done a lot of advertising previously and it wanted to establish Thieman as the face of Medical Mutual in the Northwest Ohio region, Chaney said.
The campaign was developed to distinguish Medical Mutual from its competitors as a company that takes a consultant’s approach to solve problems and meet the customers’ needs rather than just selling products.
“We decided to put Gary in a position where he’s having a conversation about what real businesspeople have on their mind about health insurance. Now, the conversation will change where Gary will be listening to a client,” Chaney said.
Medical Mutual sells health insurance directly to some businesses but much of it is sold through brokers and independent agents.
“The message is that we want to be helpful to them and their clients,” Thieman said.
About 60 percent of companies renew their contracts for insurance around the first of the year. Thieman reported that Medical Mutual has experienced good results with renewals for Jan. 1, 2012, when compared to previous years.
As one of four senior vice presidents in the sales and customer relations division, he is responsible for all sales regions in Ohio, Indiana, Georgia and South Carolina, small group business and expansion in other states.
Thieman’s insurance career began at Medical Mutual’s predecessor, Blue Cross of Northwest Ohio in 1971. He also worked for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kentucky, now Anthem BCBS, rising to executive vice president.
In 1989, Thieman joined Findley Davies Inc, a human resources consulting firm in Toledo, where he was employed for more than 20 years. He was a member of its board of directors and management committee, national health and group benefits consulting practice, and led its business development and marketing efforts.
Thieman said he consulted with large companies on health insurance and continued his relationship with Medical Mutual and businesspeople in Toledo during that time.
He returned to Medical Mutual and now has a new office in the distinctive building on Sylvania Avenue that was designed by the SSOE Group and built by Rudolph | Libbe.
“We’re still tweaking it,” said Thieman, who said they are creating a more welcoming entrance with a new first floor lobby designed by SSOE.
He is the immediate past president of the Toledo Regional Chamber of Commerce and currently serves on its executive committee.
He graduated from Start High School and the University of Toledo, where he met his wife Cheryl. Both born and raised in Toledo, they have been married for more than 40 years, have three children and six grandchildren.