social media,marketing,web design,april 1,april fools,april fools prank

April Fools pranks you can use on your website and social media

april fools april 1 cartoon

April Fools’ Day pranks are so effective on business owners. Because they are always so busy, bosses often forget what day it is. 

If your target market includes busy entrepreneurs, this date gives you the license to be as creative as you can be to showcase your brand in a fun way.

This is the best day to get attention for your brand. Making your potential clients smile is one of the best emotions for brand recall. We always try to have fun, especially when we prank our own services.

April 1 is just around the corner, and it’s time to think about some practical jokes you can play on your website and social media visitors. As always, make sure not to hurt anyone (or any brand) in the process.

If you are teamed up with a professional designer, you can easily create these tweaks in your website and social media.

April Fools website pranks

YouTube

A massive stunt you can execute for your website is to feature a product that’s the total opposite of your services.

Like this campaign from YouTube where they offered The YouTube Collection which is a DVD compilation of all videos on the website plus a minute-by-minute delivery service!

Hulu

If a video campaign is too cumbersome for you to produce, you can have an overhaul of your website to look like it time traveled from the 90s like what Hulu did last 2011.

If you’ll notice, there is a blue banner to take the user back to the original modern website. This way, the prank doesn’t ruin the user experience. Consider having this exit option also when making an April fools version of your website.

April Fools Hulu

H&M and Mark Zuckerberg

For a bit more fun that can also have a positive impact on some of your clients, you can merge their brands and make a fake website about their collaboration just like this H&M and Mark Zuckerberg team-up.

Remember to get approval beforehand especially because you are going to use another company’s branding. To be on the safe (and more creative) side, you can have fake brands created and combine their campaigns instead.

April Fools social media pranks

Surprisingly, social media has a low posting but high engagement rate during April fools. There might be 2 reasons why companies don’t participate:

  1. Pranking doesn’t match the brand’s archetype.
  2. They don’t have a professional designer to execute their vision.

The first reason is acceptable. The second one is a lost opportunity. That’s why if you have a professional designer, grab the chance and have a bit of fun.

McDonald’s

The Food and Beverage Industry is the biggest prankster on social media. McDonald’s is no newcomer to the world of April Fool’s campaigns. Last 2019, they publicised a glow-in-the-dark burger.

Last year’s publicity stunt was my favourite. They launched a three fries portion to put an end to chip thievery. For a moment, I actually wished this option was true. 👧❤️🍟

April Fools McDonalds

Subway

With a bit of graphic design magic, you can create an outrageous product that compliments your current offerings.

Take this Helping Hand gadget for example, that allows users to scroll, swipe, and like online without spilling the contents of their Footlong Sub.

April Fools Subway

Burger King

Give in to your customer’s secret desires like that Burger King did last April 1, 2017. They introduced WHOPPER™ Toothpaste, the first toothpaste that keeps your mouth Whopper fresh.

April Fools Burger King

Advil

You don’t have to change your product or service for April Fools. Offer your clients some medication from too many April Fools pranks with one last mischief.

Advil did a simple tweak on their packaging and posted it on social media to jump on the trending hashtag.

April Fools Advil

Joke’s on them

Timing is of the essence when executing these April Fools campaigns.

Last April 2021, Volkswagen’s prank backfired. The company said that it would change its name to “Voltswagen” in order to showcase its new electric vehicle.

The April Fools’ gag was intended to advertise the company’s new electric vehicle for the US market.

However, the story was released two days before April 1, and because the company refused to dispute it, numerous outlets reported it as “truth,” and it ticked off a ton of news organizations.

Have fun with your vision

If you have to stress over refining the vision and then executing the design, where’s the fun in that? Subscribe to Deer Designer so we can give you options on how to best execute your graphic design tricks.

You’ll have a blast while also reaping significant marketing benefits. Make it a yearly tradition that can help keep your social media channels and website updated and light-hearted.

Here are things to consider if you’re planning an April Fool’s Day campaign.

  1. To tickle a few funny bones, keep the website changes and social media posts light-hearted.
  2. Run it through colleagues or some clients first to filter what can be potentially offensive.
  3. If you’re pulling a prank, make sure it’s well-planned.

Remember that you’re still working with brands and assets that bear a company’s reputation so it’s best to prepare and debrief the audience about it.

Tease your audience a few days prior to April Fool’s Day then follow it up with a post on the 1st of April to show that it was just a prank.

Have fun!