PR Win: Google’s annual April Fools’ gags

google-gagsLessons from Google PR – how to tell your story and make it fun for people to tell others your story…the best method of travel being word of mouth!

There’s survival in being proactive in your PR.  When you are small, public relations is needed in order to compete and get better ROI (return on investment) for your marketing dollars.  When you get bigger, you still need to compete, but you also need to protect yourself.  It’s an unfortunate fact of human behavior that bigger companies and bigger entities get attacked.  Look at the tabloids if you don’t believe me.  And not all of those rumors are true.

That’s why you have to tell your  story..and you have to get others to tell your story – the good story, the story of goodwill and what you are doing that is helping others.  Otherwise all people see is that fact that you are doing well and they (those that are jealous, those that are haters) feel you need to be “brought down to size,” meaning their size (small).  So they attack you.

But the most insidious part of it is they get unsuspecting, good people to follow suit.  We’ve all done it – you’ve been told something by someone you trusted and later found out what they told you (whom they heard from someone else) was not true.  You may or may not have acted on that information – but it might have tainted your viewpoint of that person.

However, if you knew that person  and you guys stayed in close touch, you’d disregard the rumor – or at least pay attention to it a little less.  You might even protect that person and attack the rumormonger.  This also happens in business – but in business this can affect your sales, your revenues and your ability to compete.

Google-Nose-Smelling-PhoneHow Google Uses PR to Foster a Loyal Fan Base

That’s the beauty of PR – telling your story and getting others to tell your story.  When you do that you let people see who you really are and rumors are less likely to affect you negatively.  You’re in a much better position if you have a large and loyal fan base, so you have to create and foster that fan base.

In a recent blog post entitled “A roundup of Google’s 2013 April Fools’ gags,” written by By Jon Gold via NetworkWorld, you’ll find a dozen of Google’s gags over the years.  This was a brilliant post.  And as Gold aptly puts it, Google is pretty much the only way anybody does anything on the Internet anymore.  Every year Google does a big spoof of a funny April Fool’s Day joke.  Do they do it just because it’s fun?  Nope.  They do it in order to show us that yes, they’re a fun and easygoing bunch, but not at all evil.

Whether Google knows they are creating good public relations – they are.  Some companies do it instinctively, but either way its beneficial to learn from them.

Here’s a few years of Google’s gags.  Enjoy!

Google Nose


The Levity Algorithm


Introducing Gmail Blue


You Tube’s ready to select a winner


The Google Wallet ATM








Did this give you any ideas?  I hope so!  Find ways to tell your story and get others to tell your story. In addition to being an expert in your industry, you can also show a fun side.  Kick it up!

Here to your success,

Karla Jo Helms

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