Unconventional Partnerships on April Fool’s Day
3 Minute Read
· April Fool’s Day allows brands to connect on a human level with consumers through humour and creativity.
· Brands that partner from two non-related categories create a unique juxtaposition that lure in consumers.
· Marketing for the sake of being current and humorous may not be on strategy for every brand and may be overlooked by well-rounded campaigns
April Fool’s Day allows brands to connect on a human level with consumers through humour and creativity. Brands pull out some of the most extreme content from full on product creation, to simple tweets that prank their followers. Within that spectrum, what types of marketing should brands invest in that will resonate best with consumers? Unconventional partnerships between two opposing brands are a common tactic on April 1st. MKTG explores two recent April Fool’s Day collaborations from this year that exemplify a successful contrast in brand categories.
Brands that partner from non-related categories create a unique juxtaposition that lure in consumers.
Arby’s + Warby Parker, 2018
Arby’s partnered with eyewear brand Warby Parker to create the Onion Ring Monocle. The two companies released the following spot on April Fools Day:
The spot was supported with food truck activations in New York City and a limited-edition retail line of shirts, hats and bags that feature the joint “WArby’s” branding. This unconventional partnership has drawn in high engagement on social media and a sold-out product line. Arby’s and Warby Parker play up the partnership of “two world’s colliding” with further posts on social channels such as:
Addressing the juxtaposition directly is not just a stunt – it’s a strategy to draw consumers to both brands. By having a more well-rounded approach by including retail, advertising and live experiences, it takes the campaign to the next level inviting consumers to immerse themselves within branded content (versus laughing behind a screen at a simple tweet, meme etc.) to find out more information with links to corporate sites and retail. Arby's and Warby Parker's gain benefits from this campaign as both brand identities become further highlighted as the contrast between the two brands is overtly obvious with this match-up.
Lexus + 23andMe, 2018
We see another unique April Fool’s Day partnership between leading personal genetics company, 23andMe and Lexus for the Genetic Select campaign. To promote how customizable Lexus vehicles are, they used the popular 23andMe genetic screening tool of “gathering a saliva sample” that will be analyzed with the result of providing the consumer with the perfect, handcrafted vehicle. How does one start their newly tailored Lexus? By licking the steering wheel.
With 23andMe, your genetic report is provided as a percentage breakdown by region in the world. Lexus leveraged the 23andMe report style to create an authentic feel to the partnership and campaign, tying the results back to high quality aspects of the car such as panoramic sunroofs and high-quality engines.
Aside from this being a humorous joke, the campaign has a direct purpose. The partnership allows attributes from both brands to be highlighted for consumers. From 23andMe, we see the power of science, a brand that is consumer focused, unique and detail oriented with the technique of analyzing the genetic makeup of the consumer. With Lexus, we see a wide range of high-quality products with an emphasis of personalization, quality and craftsmanship which are at the forefront of this April Fool’s Day campaign. Both “WArby’s” and “Genetic Select” campaigns are attention grabbing that allows consumers to be immersed in branded content as they are curious to see the outcome of an unconventional collaboration.
Although these examples have proven to work well in market this year, April’s Fools Day marketing will not work for every brand. Marketing for sake of being current and humorous may not be on strategy for every brand and may be overlooked by well-rounded campaigns.