A Must-Learn Move for April Fool’s Day: As an Good Opportunity to Play Tricks and to Promote New Products

We all know that April Fool’s day is a great opportunity for brands to pull off some “entertainment”.  On this day, customers tend to just laugh at the silly or goofy things done or tricks pulled off by the suppliers after they find out the truth. However, to imagine that if a brand seriously launched an unbelievable product on April Fool’s day, and it wasn’t meant to be a joke, what would you think?

Burger King’s Whopper Goes Meatless!?

What if someone told you that Burger King’s Whopper doesn’t really a beef-contained burger but a vegetarian burger, and you are considered to fail about the truth, wouldn’t you think it’s just some kind of April Fool’s day joke?

We’re talking about Burger King’s new product: they go all out to launch the meatless burger, the Impossible Whopper, on April Fool’s day without hesitation. Not only the self-proclaimed die-hard fans of Burger King’s who visit everyday couldn’t notice the difference, but also refused to believe that the “beef” in the new Whopper was not a real meat but a 100% plant-based compound. (See video below). Their reactions were the best promotion to the product!

Burger King declared, “This is not a joke. It’s all real.” (However, Burger King doesn’t necessarily have a good record in this regards. Making a joke has already been part of its brand image. XD)

The Plant-based Substitute Meat

This has been a collaboration between Burger King and “Impossible Foods”, which is a company known for its plant-based vegetarian meat and dairy products. The new Whopper is identical to the old version, except that the meat is vegetarian (Let’s just use “substitute meat” to represent it here).

According to a report by the New York Times, the new Whopper would first be launched in the 59 branches in Saint Louis, US. If it was well-received, Burger King planned to sell it all across the US. Not only does this new burger have no beef, it even costs 1 US dollar more. Guess what the market reaction has been? According to a report by CNBC, these 59 branches saw an increase of customer flows by 18.5% compared to other branches, a 1.75% decrease! In mid-May Burger King announced it would begin a trial sale in three more cities. It is scheduled that customers will be able to buy the Impossible Whopper in all 7200 Burger Kings in the US by the end of year.

Whether Eating a Real Meat or not is a Choice

This type of products targets vegetarians who don’t consume meat out of specific reasons: they find meat production inefficient and environmental unfriendly, not to mention that this is a gospel for them. In the past, to get meat, we required large patches of lands to plant foods for feeding animals. We feed the animals for quite a while until they grow big enough to eat their meat. This is not only a slow and inefficient process, but also a burden to the earth; in addition, killing animals just to satisfy human’s appetite is immoral… These reasons above led to the advent of substitute meat consisting of plants that is mimic to real meat. The plant-based ingredients are added water and reconstituted according to animal meat’s structure (amino acids, fats, minerals, vitamins), creating the so called “meat” that we know. The vegetarian meat not only doesn’t have the drawbacks of traditional meat, but  even have the same nutritional values as them. Even I, a meat eater, am keen to try it!    

▲The substitute meat is found in Taiwan now. 《V Burger》@ Breeze

Seriously launching “real” products that seem unbelievable on April Fool’s would sure stir up discussions, comparisons and unboxing on social media. If you search the key words “impossible whopper taste”, you will see a loads of positive reviews. The foodies either couldn’t tell that the burger meat was a substitute or thought that it tasted very similar to the real meat. In any case, most reviews say it’s “really worth trying”. So, how popular has the service become? To answer this question, let’s look at one other substitute meat company, “Beyond Meat”. It became listed recently (June, 2019) and its share price has risen by 600%. The number speaks for itself.

Burger King was clever for choosing to release this incredible new product on April Fool’s day. The ambiguity between truth and lies has pushed the popularity to another level. Unbelievable!

Told you, there’s more to do on April Fool’s than playing tricks. If you have brand image awareness, the marketing campaign you do will not only “entertain people” but also promote new products!

You’ve got to learn this move.

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