Corporate Eye

Brands Play April Fools Jokes Too

Even brands are not immune to the fun of April Fool’s Day.  A trip around the Web on April 1st can cause confusion, concern, and laughs, which more companies join each year. This year, I stumbled across several branded April Fool’s jokes that either made me do a double-take or crack a smile. Several are described below:

1. Google changes its name to Topeka
In a hat tip to the mayor of Topeka, Kansas who recently said he was changing the name of his city to Google, visitors to Google’s Web site today were greeted with a new name and logo.  I saw this one first thing this morning when I logged into my computer and while I noticed it, I just kept on going.  Since Google changes its logo frequently to match the current holiday, I’d imagine most Google users didn’t think much of this change.


2. Gmail loses its vowels

If you logged into Gmail at one point today, you would have noticed that all of the vowels on the page were missing.  I saw it and paused for a moment before realizing it had to be an April Fool’s joke!


3. Starbucks introduces new sizes

Starbucks introduced two new sizes for April Fool’s Day — the micra and the plenta, which could also be called the Dixie Cup size and the Bucket size.


Kodak announces Aromatography
Scratch ‘n sniff photographs are finally here … April Fool’s!


Did you see any funny, surprising, or even annoying branded April Fool’s jokes this year?  Leave a comment and share your story.

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.