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Marketing

Showpo pulls April Fool’s Day prank

Pureplay e-commerce fashion and accessories company Showpo launched a much-anticipated menswear range last week called Showbro. But while fans of the brand commented “finally” on the Instagram announcement, they didn’t have long to enjoy the news.

Showpo co-founder and CEO Jane Lu revealed on Saturday that the announcement was part of an elaborate April Fool’s Day prank, posting on her personal Facebook account: “GOTCHA!! Happy April Fools ;)”

Lu is well-known for her social media savvy, and the prank is certainly in keeping with the company’s laid back approach to customer communication. But she said the joke was more about having fun than their marketing strategy.

The idea emerged last year, when the team at Freelancer made a mock website for Showbro and suggested . Showpo roped social media influencer Shaun Birley into the plan, naming his as their new face of menswear and posting images from a fake fashion shoot on Instagram.

The prank was all the more convincing, since fans of the fashion company have long wanted Showpo to expand into menswear.

“People are always saying ‘you should do menswear’, they always think that they’ve come up with a great idea that I haven’t already thought of. This is just literally a prank and get people off our back about menswear,” Lu told Business Insider.

Showpo is hardly the only retailer to have a bit of fun on April Fool’s Day, though some are more believable than others: Flat-pack furniture company Ikea announced a plan to expand into low-cost air travel, with the launch of its Flikea fleet of planes, and Amazon promoted an Alexa-like voice-activated speaker for pets.

Jane Lu was named to Internet Retailing’s 2017 Top 50 People in E-Commerce, which can be downloaded here.

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