Prankvertising – Cheap Lols or a Genuine Strategy?

A couple of episodes ago, the panel at Gruen Planet looked at the phenomenon of ‘prankvertising’ – advertising and PR stunts based on a prank or trick in an attempt to generate publicity.

Chances are you’ve seen prankvertising pop up on your Facebook feed.

Like this one:

And it wouldn’t be a blog on prankvertising without mentioning this one:

The content is created to shock, entertain and, when done successfully, generate publicity for the brand/cause/product. The above videos have both hit well over the ‘one million view’ mark, creating a viral river of shares, likes and comments behind them.

Additionally, the content allows brands to focus on generating exposure on digital platforms, steering spend away from traditional advertising and PR.

Are these videos strategic in that the content has resulted in huge brand exposure and millions of people talking about their video? Or do the videos miss the mark – providing viewers with a good laugh, and not much else?

To put it simply, does the LG ad make you want to buy the TV? Did the Carrie coffee shop prank convince you to head to the movies?

When done strategically, prankvertising can generate talk for all of the right reasons.

Like the following piece by Leo Burnett London:

Didn’t see that coming did you? The clip leaves you thinking, which is exactly the aim of the piece – to leave the viewer with a message (don’t drink and drive), as opposed to selling a product. This is prankvertising done well.

But it doesn’t always have to be shocking. Take it from our friends in New Zealand, who decided to fill an unsuspecting mates plumbing with Tui beer:

A successful prankvertising piece thinks of the target market audience and crafts a clever enough prank that will have the ‘viral effect’ among the intended audience. For Tui Beer, they hit the nail on the head.

What do you think? Is prankvertising the ‘cheap laughs’ of the digital advertising world? Or when done well, can it generate greater brand publicity than traditional advertising and PR?


Hollie Azzopardi, Account Manager for Stolen Quotes.

Events 101

We recently hosted the second annual Christmas In July event for Michael Field Pty Ltd with great success. Our secret to hosting a show stopping event starts with the four ‘P’s of event management:

1. The Plan

The first key step is to determine the objective of your event. What do you want to achieve? Are you after brand exposure? Enquiry generation? Networking? With this in mind, formulate a plan for how to achieve it. It’s important to have a clear purpose – without a well-defined objective, you may end up paying a hefty sum for no real reason. Even Jay Gatsby had a reason for all of those grand, lavish parties he held seemingly meaninglessly.

2. The People

This might seem like an obvious statement, but make sure you know everyone that will be involved, from your own staff to attendees. Make sure your team knows exactly what they are doing, when they are doing it, where it’s being done and who they are working with. Also ensure your invite list is succinct and appropriate for your event – you wouldn’t want to invite a brand ambassador for PETA to the launch event for your steakhouse.

3. The Place

We aren’t selling property, but the importance we place on the event location might fool you enough to think so. Select a venue that’s the right size and that will provide the right environment and ambience for the type of event you want to hold. Make sure it’s easy to locate and close to various forms of transportation. If everyone feels comfortable and welcome, you’ve made a home for these people for the night, and they will be extremely grateful.

4. The Provisions

An attendee who is well fed, well watered and well gifted is an attendee who will have nothing but raving reviews about your event, your team and your company. Ensure you cater for all different dietary requirements, that everybody’s glass is always full and that guests leave with a handful of ‘remember-me-by’s.

Of course, these four ‘P’s are just the beginning of a successful event. If you’d like to learn more, feel free to get in touch to find out how we can help you out with the rest.


Jason Gieng, Designer for Stolen Quotes.