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5 April Fools' Day Marketing Triumphs

March 2012 



The Manitoba Tourism Education Council (MTEC) has some great training opportunities available for tourism, retail and business training. Visit their website at for more information.

The Original Pancake House has a delicious promotion running, "Cinnamon Celebrations!" Belgium cinnamon waffles, cinnamon raisin toast. Check it out at any of their three locations in Winnipeg!

Better Buildings Conference & Exhibition
takes place on April 24th at the Winnipeg Convention Center.
For more information visit their website.

Manitoba Quality Network (QNET) will host their annual conference and exhibition at the Winnipeg Convention Centre on May 3, 2012. Check their website for more info

Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Awards (WEYA) WEYA is celebrating 20 years! Join us at the gala on May 17th.  For more information and to purchase tickets visit

WEAAD World Elder Abuse Awareness Day
is June 15th. Stay tuned for more information on this important day!

Balmoral Hall is celebrating 110 years at a Gala Event being held at the Western Canada Aviation Museum on April 21.  For more information and to purchase tickets click here.


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-5 April Fools' Day Marketing Triumphs -  

April Fools' Day is a day filled with silly, crazy and some simply outlandish pranks. It's also a great day for marketers to get clever, have some fun AND cash in on the viral nature of our society. Here are 5 good-natured and memorable (a key to good marketing) April Fools' Day pranks. 


Burger King published a full page ad in the April 1st, 1998, edition of USA Today announcing they were introducing a "Left-Handed Whopper" to their menu. The new Burger sensation was specially designed for the 32 million left-handed Americans. According to the ad, the new whopper included the same ingredients as the original Whopper, but all the condiments were rotated 180 degrees for the benefit of their left-handed customers. The next day Burger King issued a follow-up release revealing that although the Left-Handed Whopper was a hoax, thousands of south paws had gone into restaurants to request the new burger. AND, "many others requested their own 'right handed' version."

Now that's a joke in good taste -- if you like burgers that is!

2. YouTube Celebrates 100 Years!
On March 31, 2011 YouTube sent out a news release to announce it was celebrating it's 100th Year Anniversary. It said, "It's hard to believe that just a century ago, YouTube was a fledgling video site for paupers and presidents alike. Today, we celebrate 100 years of YouTube, and we thought we would reflect on our inaugural year with a re-print of our first blog post from 1911. In honor of this milestone, today's homepage is a reproduction of how you might have viewed it 100 years ago."
Top 5 Viral Pictures of 1911
Top 5 Viral Pictures of 1911
Funny and clever! It looks like you can continue to add &vintage=1911 at the end of any YouTube url to turn the video into a silent old time film.

3. Google Announces Gmail Motion
March 30, 2011, Google got in on the April Fools' day band wagon with its announcement of Gmail Motion, an interesting technology that would allow you to control your email with your body.
Introducing Gmail Motion
Introducing Gmail Motion
A little silly but it got over 7 million views! hmmm, not bad.


4. Taco Bell Buys the Liberty Bell 

On April 1, 1996 the Taco Bell Corporation took out a full-page ad that appeared in six major newspapers. The ad announced Taco Bell had bought the Liberty Bell and was renaming it the Taco Liberty Bell. According to reports, Taco Bell "paid" $300,000 for the campaign. They quickly revealed the hoax after a ton of protests rolled in. The hoax resulted in an estimated $25 million in media exposure, and sales exceeding $1 million nationwide on April 1 and 2.   


That's a pretty good return on their $300,000 marketing investment!    



The Museum of Hoaxes ranked this one among their Top 100 April Fools' Day jokes and it has a good marketing moral to it. In March 2007 the website of the Lebanon Circle Magik Co. posted images of an 8-inch mummified creature resembling a fairy. They explained that the creature was found by a man walking his dog along an old roman road in rural Derbyshire. The website received tens of thousands of visitors as word spread over the internet and people speculated about whether fairies actually existed. At the end of April Fools' Day the owner of the site confessed that the fairy was a hoax. He had used his skills as a magician's prop-maker to create the creature.
A great way to get some hits on your website and to show your expertise as a prop-maker!

If you're thinking you'd like to cash in on April Fools' Day tomfoolery, proceed with caution. Some work, some don't. Light-hearted satire works best and will give your brand a boost. Anything that insults people's intelligence or is in bad taste will backfire and the joke will be on you!    

Dubyts Communications Inc.
201-301 Nassau St. North Winnipeg, MB R3L 2J5

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Dubyts Communications | 201-301 Nassau St. North | Winnipeg | Manitoba | R3L 2J5 | Canada