Americans for Secure Retirement

Broadening the Retirement Conversation

A group of prominent life insurance companies hired CLS Strategies to broaden the conversation about rebuilding retirement security in America and the role annuities could play.

Our first challenge was to overcome the conventional wisdom that viewed annuities as a marginal product, of value only to a small segment of retirees. Through in-depth polling, research and analysis, CLS Strategies created and developed a new way to frame annuities: as a steady “paycheck for life.” 

CLS Strategies then brought together a broad coalition of third parties to form Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR). Through the coalition of rural interests, minorities and small-business groups, we were able to drive home the “paycheck for life” message to the media, Capitol Hill, the administration and others who shape retirement policy.

CLS Strategies’ efforts changed the national conversation about annuities, which are today recognized by policymakers as a vital part of serious retirement security solutions. Before long bipartisan, bicameral legislation to promote annuities had emerged, and obtained the support of critical members of Congress from both the Senate Finance and House Ways and Means Committees.

Ultimately the coalition came to represent more than 70 organizations including rural interests, minorities, women, small businesses and the self-employed. Moreover, the broader education campaign successfully repositioned annuities and similar financial instruments as building blocks for managing lifetime income.