CSAA Insurance Group modernizes the Rickroll
Rickrolling—or disguising the link to the music video for Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” as a more desirable piece of online content—is a classic element of internet culture. But this August, CSAA Insurance Group brought the online prank to 17 cities across the U.S. with a series of billboards and other out-of-home ads featuring only a QR code topped with an illustration of Astley’s hair. The code brought consumers to a remake of the music video at the core of Rickrolling, with Astley dressed in the same outfit as the original. This new version, however, incorporates CSAA Insurance representatives and heavily features the company’s logo. The video garnered a million views on YouTube in only two days, and currently has 5.3 million views.
Although the ad is meant to be playful, Linda Goldstein, executive VP of customer experience and marketing at CSAA Insurance Group, emphasized that the video also aimed to tie the song’s messages of devotion and reliability to the quality of the service the company provides.