When Michelle met Verity

Up until the mid-noughties, any marketing professionals entering the insurance industry found themselves in a lonely world, with little support either inside or outside the business.

Until Michelle met Verity.

United by their interest in people and their ambition to do their best, they reached out to their contacts and brought insurance marketers together for the first time.

“We believed that a networking group, giving peers regular opportunities to meet and discuss topical issues would be useful. One of the fantastic aspects of the insurance market, particularly so in London, is the recognition of the value of face-to-face meetings, of learning as a market, and of collaboration.

We saw that our colleagues in underwriting and other core functions belonged to networking groups and we decided to fill that void for marketing and communications professionals.

The first Insurance Marketers Group in 2010 was attended by just a handful of people. Today, with over 200 members, our meetings fill up fast.

Our mission is to be the watering hole for insurance marketers, providing the time, space and stimulus to help our members connect and refresh their thinking.”

Become a member

The IMG has six aims

Promote the profile of marketing and communications departments within the industry.

Support the development of members at all stages of their career.

Collaborate with our members, to develop the IMG for better.

Help in the development of materials for use by members.

Learn from best practise, both within and outside the insurance market.

Help members stay up to date with the latest trends, products, agencies.

Verity Blair

Verity is Co-Founder of the Insurance Marketers Group. She has worked in many roles with a focus on supporting Marketing and Communications teams in the international insurance market. Verity started her career working for Insurance Day, where she enjoyed a broad exposure to an exciting marketplace, and eventually went on to work with the Marketing and Communications teams at Mitsui Sumitomo, and later MS Amlin.

“I’m passionate about development, networking, and the wonderful opportunities this unique marketplace offers for collaboration with peers, and how the IMG can offer that platform for marketers and communication professionals.”

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Michelle Leach

Michelle’s career in insurance started at a broking firm. Following roles in banking, communications then loss adjusting, she joined Mitsui Sumitomo insurance (now MS Amlin) in 2003 and in 2005 stepped into a junior marketing role. After meeting Verity, who introduced her to other marketers in the London market, she realised they all shared similar challenges, barriers and experiences. Since then, Michelle has worked at Liberty Specialty Markets, Amwins Global Risks and QBE Europe, whilst continuing to build and expand the IMG.

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In 2021, Michelle was recognised in the Women in Insurance awards and awarded Marketer of the Year.

Simon Johnston

Simon joined Markel in November 2019 as UK Marketing Director from his previous role as Head of Marketing at Travelers.

He began his marketing career at Weber Shandwick/ McCann and has worked in-house and agency-side in the US, Asia-Pacific and Europe with a range of brands including Shell, Honda and Allianz. Simon is a member of the Worshipful Company of Marketors and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

At Markel, Simon leads the UK marketing function with responsibility for insight, proposition development, brand, internal comms, PR and digital. He is a member of UK Executive team and the Markel International Diversity & Inclusion network.

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Cara McFadyen

Since joining the insurance industry in 2012, Cara has built a diverse career spanning award-winning start-ups, MGAs, Private Clients, Facultative Reinsurance, and Specialty Broking. She has also contributed her expertise to the London Board of The Chartered Institute of Marketing.

A member of the IMG since 2016, Cara values the connections she has made and the support of the members through various challenges in her career.

Driven by a strong desire to elevate the recognition of Marketing within the insurance C-Suite, she excels at guiding traditional businesses toward Marketing & Sales best practices through creative problem-solving and clear strategic articulation.

Advice for marketers in insurance; “Be curious”

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David Cawdeary MCIM

In an insurance career spanning over 20 years, David has held roles at several leading brokers and one of the UK’s largest MGA’s.

Starting life as a junior broker, David decided to change path and moved into his first marketing role whilst with Aon in 2007. Following roles at Towergate, Bluefin, Marsh and Pen Underwriting, he is now Director of Marketing (Europe) at Fortegra.

His wide-ranging experience has included leading teams, developing marketing programmes for various affinity groups and advising on brand strategy at an executive level.

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