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April Fools: Unwrapping The Best Brand Pranks

April Fools: Unwrapping The Best Brand Pranks




April Fools falls on April 1st every year, and it’s one day of the year when you can really think outside the box with your marketing plans. Every time we see a brand post on April Fools, it’s obvious that it’ll be a prank, it’s a day that’s slowly but surely been claimed by brands.

Some cynics might say, ‘What’s the point?’ if we know these campaigns aren’t serious, but it’s the one day where brands can test the water and try something new, and we’re all for it. 

To commemorate April Fools, we’ve picked out some of the top campaigns from this year and previous years! 


When Mob announced their new product, ‘The Mob Chopper’, we’ll admit we genuinely thought it was a good idea. Chopped salads with minimal effort? Sign us up. It was, however, a cunning prank, and when clicking through to the pre-order link, you got ‘rick-rolled’.

A Covid Themed Bar 

The opening of a new bar in Manchester really had people second-guessing if it was a joke or not. With the amount of themed bars cropping up in the city, a Covid-themed bar wouldn’t be completely unheard of. Conveniently named ’Pandemik’, the bar has Covid rules in place, such as adhering to social distancing, no more than 6 to a group can attend, masks must be worn at all times, and guests must buy a substantial meal.

Glitter Bottoms

Trixie Cosmetics took it upon themselves to release ‘Glitter Bottoms’, their ‘new’ product, which actually left their audience disappointed that it wasn’t a real product.

Piccadilly Water Park

Piccadilly Gardens has been somewhat of an eyesore for far too long. Every so often, CGI plans will outline the new and exciting improvements that are in place for the space, but these never actually come into existence. As an April Fools, The Manc revealed plans for a pop-up water park with a huge twisting water slide, sun loungers and an ice cream truck serving boozy sorbets.

McDonald’s - McFlurry Dips

McDonald’s April Fools campaign was directed right at the fries dipped in milkshake apologists. Honing the trend, the fast-food chain ‘released’ its milkshake sauce pots in four classic flavours: vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, and banana. And in our humble opinion, if these actually came into existence, we wouldn’t be mad about it.

Tinder - Height Verification

Within the online dating sphere, plenty of people have fallen victim to ‘height catfishing’. Many users on the app have been guilty of adding an inch (or several) to their height, and Tinder cleverly used this as the subject of their April Fools campaign. 

Their ‘height verification’ aimed to bring ‘truthfulness back to online dating’ and quickly gained attention across socials. 


Innocent Smoothie & Heinz - Smoup

Innocent Smoothie is known for its witty, out-of-the-box and funny social media presence. So when they launched their new product, ‘Smoup’, most people wouldn’t have even batted an eyelid. After all, a tomato is a fruit, right? Teaming up with Heinz for their campaign, Smoup does what it says on the tin (or bottle): a blend of smoothie and soup. Surprisingly, a lot of people weren’t against it, so maybe one day we’ll actually see this on the shelves. 

Spam Goes ‘Vegan’

Does anyone even really know what Spam is? If you told us on any old day that Spam has no actual meat content, we’d probably believe you.

But for April Fools, design agency Robot Food (with no affiliation with the Spam brand) decided to pose as the mystery meat brand, releasing a campaign that promoted a new product, ‘Vegan Spam’. Despite not coming from Spam as a brand, the digital mock-ups quickly spread across socials. Although many clocked on early that it was nothing more than a prank, many users were intrigued about actually trying it.

Babybel Turns Square 

Babybel took to socials to announce their new and more mature image, it’s hip to be square, apparently. The cheese brand announced its plans to shapeshift with ‘square’ snacks instead of their signature circular cheese to cater to a more serious audience.

PayPal - Print Money From Your Phone 

As we’re in the era of cashless shopping, it’s rare to pay for anything without a bank card these days. Going to the cash machine has become more of an effort, so PayPal decided to use this for their campaign. 

They posted on socials about their new ‘update’ which allowed users to print money straight from their phone. Clearly an April Fools, but there’s no denying how much easier life would be with it.

Waitrose - Merlonay

For April Fools, Waitrose appealed to wine connoisseurs who can never choose between white, red and rosé. Introducing ‘Merlonay’, the ‘mix your own wine’ that appeals to all wine lovers by letting you blend your own rosé so you can enjoy it as pale or dark as you like. 

LEGO - Smart Bricks

Stepping on LEGO is a pain everyone knows all too well. Those pesky little bricks are almost impossible to avoid. Hopping on the bandwagon, LEGO announced their upcoming ‘Smart Blocks’, a new product that automatically moves out of the way whenever a foot gets too close.

Although LEGO never confirmed whether the product was a joke, they did hint at it. If it ever did come into existence, no doubt it’s be a bestseller in no time. 

Thinking about trialling your own April Fools campaign? The main takeaway is to have fun with it and not overthink it! The sillier, the better we say. 

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