Esurance Is No April Fool When It Comes to Free Publicity

By | April 1, 2016

Allstate’s Esurance has used the convergence of a volatile and unpredictable election year and April Fools’ Day to have a little fun.

The fun is Esurance’s Election Insurance homeowners policy, designed to protect abandoned homes for the next four years after their owners flee the United States following a presidential election.

It’s not really true, of course, but Esurance, an online auto and home insurance provider was all in, in time for April 1. The insurers even created a YouTube commercial narrated by Esurance’s usual spokesperson, the actor John Krasinski. Esurance also issued a press release, complete with quotes.

“Every four years, we hear from countless dissatisfied Americans who threaten to leave the country if the ‘wrong’ candidate is elected into office,” Alan Gellman, Esurance’s chief marketing officer, said in his prepared statement. “This year, we’re pleased to announce our newest innovation – Election Insurance. If your preferred candidate loses the election, Esurance will protect your home so you can move out of the country worry free.”

The video plays like a regular commercial, highlighting policy options that include weekly home maintenance, and also premium options such as the “holiday overachiever,” which allows for home and yard decoration to “give you piece of mind.” There’s even a platinum option, Esurance said, where a teen simulates a breakup out on the front lawn “to give your home an authentic lived-in feel.”

Esurance is known for marketing to a younger audience, and so its April Fools’ Day stunt is in tandem with its broader brand. It also offers a cheeky way to advertise what Esurance really sells.

“We just want to celebrate April Fools’ Day in an unexpected, lighthearted way to further engage people and connect them to the Esurance brand,” spokesperson Dolleen Cross explained to Carrier Management via email. “We also wanted to let people know that if they are interested, we have a real homeowner’s product they should check out.”

"Woodsy" Patriot moving to Canada in Esurance Election Insurance Ad
“Woodsy” patriot moving to Canada in Esurance Election Insurance ad

Some in the conservative insurance industry might wonder whether an April Fools’ Day prank focused on the 2016 U.S. election, with candidates including Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton causing plenty of intense debate, is the best way to go.

Cross said it was a sound choice because “Esurance is a brand that understands the kind of social conversations people are having today.”

“Whether it’s through events like the Super Bowl or even a popular ‘holiday’ like April Fools’ Day, we recognize the value of participating in relevant, timely conversations and cultural moments,” Cross said.

She added that Esurance sees its April Fools’ Day election ad as not taking sides or making fun of the electoral process.

“Esurance is a neutral observer,” Cross said. “Every election we hear thousands of Americans threaten to leave the country if the ‘wrong’ candidate wins, so we decided to have a little fun and created a smart policy designed for those choosing to leave their homes to wait out the presidential term abroad.”

Hollmer is editor of’s Daily Headlines.

About Mark Hollmer

Hollmer is a veteran business journalist and editor of's daily e-newsletter for the property/casualty insurance industry C-suite. He may be reached at More from Mark Hollmer

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