Saw some weird and unusual news or posts lately? Yup, last week was of course, April Fools’ Day!
Every year, many organizations in various industries make use of this one day to showcase their humorous and creative side. But other than giving people a good laugh, is there more to this April Fool’s tradition?
April Fools’ marketing when done right, can capture audiences’ attention, increase word-of-mouth, raise insightful discussions and most importantly, emphasize and enhance an organization’s offerings.
How, you ask? Take a look at this short April Fools’ video by Airbnb!
For those unfamiliar with Airbnb, Airbnb is an online platform where hosts can lease their properties to guests seeking for short-term accommodation. Airbnb focuses on connecting like-minded people, while providing a cozier experience than others do in the traditional hospitality industry.
As seen in their April Fools’ post this year, they sarcastically repeat several times how their new “humanless host is so life-like, you will completely forget they’re not human”. While this humanless concept may not be the funniest April Fools’ joke out there, it made me reflect on our reliance on technology and the lack of real connection in today’s society. In my opinion, I believe Airbnb did a great job emphasizing their organization’s core value – real human connection.
Now, obviously it’s all just fun and games when it comes to April Fools’ Day. But what happens when organizations take it too far?
Funeralbooker is a UK-based search and compare online platform for funeral related services. And for this year’s April Fools’, they introduced a home cremation service called “CremMate”. They labeled the service as economic and thoughtful because it can “save elderly relatives the stress of navigating to a new address by making your family home the centerpiece of the occasion.”
Personally, I think they have taken the joke way too far! While the idea of home cremation may actually appeal to some, the name “CremMate” and their comedic tone are just inappropriate for such a serious topic. Even though it may be obvious that it’s just a joke, it sends off a negative image of the organization and really push audiences to judge the organization’s values and expertise. All in all, it is crucial for all marketing communications to reflect their organizations’ values and beliefs in order for it to be effective.
Let me know if you agree with me! Feel free to share some of your favorite April Fools’ marketing pranks and why you love them! I’d love to hear them!