Money & Politics

April 2, 2013

Google’s April Fools Videos – A Lesson in Branding

Every year around February I get pretty excited – it’s time for the Superbowl. Growing up in India, we called it American Football since the word ‘football’ was strictly reserved for the beautiful game of kicking a ball around. Now I’m not a big NFL fan, but what does get me excited about the Superbowl are the high quality Superbowl Ads that are made specifically for the day. I’m probably not the only one; the ads have a big enough reputation that websites such as Brandbowl use Twitter analytics to rank the most talked about ads. They shoot up to millions of views online within a day of being posted, showing the level of interest, lopsided to North America as it might be.

This brings us to April 1st.

With the rise of social media, brands are finally utilizing the internet to engage with their customers. April Fools has become a good reason to make an announcement through pranking your audience, while also raising your brand profile.

One company that has used the digital realm as a stage to attract attention each year is the tech behemoth, Google. If you’re on this page, then you probably use the internet and caught at least one of Google’s many April Fools’ pranks (full list)! Each year, Google pranks its viewers with April Fools’ jokes that are quite obvious but still get you giggling and smiling fondly. It is a great way for them to reach out to their audience and also subtly remind us of their importance in the age of the internet.

In case you didn’t catch the good ones, here’s a list of my favourite Google April Fools Videos below:

Google Nose

Google decided that it would prank their search engine users (a.k.a the whole internet) by opening up the use of another one of our senses to search! It was obvious they were kidding, but I’m sure many of us who watched the video sniggered inside.

Google Treasure Maps

Their mapping platform also had some interesting changes for the explorers among us. Take a minute to appreciate how, in each video, the narrators and actors maintain a serious face.

Youtube Shuts Down

This has to be my personal favourite, I actually tricked a few of my friends using it (sorry!). I love how they bought some of YouTube’s most memorable faces to play along. It was hilarious how the main speaker keeps in character while announcing that the intended prize is an mp3 player!

Gmail Blue

Only people who are computer illiterate would really have fallen for this one. The great part of Gmail Blue is how they pass it off as an innovative move. Also, anyone else think they were poking Facebook? (pun not intended).

Google Calendar – Levity Algorithm 

For fans of AMC’s The Walking Dead this would have been overjoyed to see Steve Yeun (Glen) impersonating a Google employee. The Levity Algorithm would probably do wonders for your stress levels; now if only my professors agreed…

With the negative backlash that Google received when it closed Google Reader, Google needed to go big to win back the fickle heart of the internet – and they did so in style. It played out perfectly except for one glitch: the popular SEO software, SEOmoz, decided to play their own April Fools prank

About the Author

Recultured Team
Recultured Team
This is where you'll find the blog posts that the team has contributed to collectively! What team? Wildcats! -Nope, wrong team. Recultured!

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