13 Great April Fool’s Day Campaigns
March 21, 2017 | Jessica Mehring
Every year on April 1, I get up in arms about something crazy some company is doing … only to find out it was an April Fools’ Day joke.
Raise your hand if you’re with me in this.
Brands from around the world participate in this prankster’s holiday with clever campaigns, fake websites, and videos of gag product announcements. I’ve pulled together 13 of my favorite to inspire your own April Fools’ Day campaigns. No joke – some of these will have you in stitches.
1. Google Paper
Google’s reputation as prankster is known far and wide. Yet every year, they seem to fool us. Since 2000, the technology giant has been pulling off some of the cleverest and most creative pranks. You can find a comprehensive history of Google April Fools’ jokes right here.
Their 2007 Gmail Paper campaign took the cake. Google changed the Gmail login page to announce a new service called Gmail Paper. It explained that users could now add emails to a “paper archive,” which Google would then print and snail-mail to the user.
2. Blue Moon Beer-infused Oranges
Blue Moon made an orange slice part of the beer-drinking experience. In 2015, they innovated yet again with the world’s first beer-infused oranges. Just kidding!
3. Planet Fitness
In 2015, the Planet Fitness gym chain announced the Reclino-Max. This recliner-slash-fitness-machine was a revolution for the lazy exerciser. Too bad it wasn’t real.
4. Scope Bacon Mouthwash
Mouthwash company Scope took April Fools to a whole new level with their 2013 bacon mouthwash campaign. The campaign included a website, social media, and even a professionally shot video. Believe it or not, people actually believed this one.
5. Tough Mudder Baby Mudder
Tough Mudder, the obstacle race organization that challenges the toughest of the tough, took on tikes in their April 1, 2015 joke campaign. Introducing Baby Mudder: the obstacle race for babies.
6. Toms + Uber = shuberX
Toms teamed up with Uber to create this hilarious shoe-meets-ridesharing campaign. If the video views on the Toms’ YouTube channel were any indication, this campaign was a runaway success.
7. LEGO® Glasses
It seems that 2015 was an excellent year for outstanding April Fools’ Day campaigns. LEGO joined in the fun with their LEGO Glasses announcement. The glasses were said to include “wearable assistive brick-sorting technology.”
8. Miz Mooz Selfie Shoes
Shoe retailer Miz Mooz jumped on the bandwagon in 2015, too, and captured the imagination of the selfie generation(s) with their Selfie Shoes campaign.
9. Reebok Swĕt
Athletic shoe-maker Reebok smelled success when they announced their new fragrance, Swĕt. I’d like to believe that people didn’t fall for this one – that people don’t actually want to smell like sweat. But who am I kidding? If I’d seen it, I’d have probably believed it.
10. Warby Parker Warby Barker
In 2012, revolutionary eyewear company Warby Parker fooled the world by launching its fake Warby Barker: Glasses for Dogs line. This clever campaign is still alive today in the form of the Warby Barker website.
11. Oreo Double Crunch
Oreo dreamed up a cookie for those opposed to Double Stuf. Look closely at the caption, here. They weren’t fooling anyone.
12. Honda Emoji License Plates
This 2016 April Fools’ Day prank was unique to the UK – but still got talked about plenty here in the U.S. Honda unveiled plans to introduce emoji license plates in the UK.
13. OpenTable Taste
OpenTable, an online restaurant reservation company with one of the most popular apps on the market, unveiled a tasty new feature in 2016. The company announced that new 4D Lickable Technology would let users try before they buy. How many people do you think actually licked their phone screens thanks to this clever campaign last year?
Looking to craft your own creative Spring campaign? This guide will help.