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April Fool’s Day From Your Favorite Internet Businesses

This year saw some interesting April Fool’s pranks pulled by major businesses. With the hype about fake news buzzing around the biggest prank day of the year, many businesses went the very-obviously-a-prank route to avoid confusion. Here are some of the highlights:

Netflix Live

Appearing on the home page a few hours before April 1 started, Netflix Live featured Will Arnett commentating for 48 minutes about normal items like a toaster, pencil sharpener, and an office copier. Some people (like myself) were initially excited – is Netflix finally jumping on the bandwagon of streaming live TV? Further investigation proved no, just a silly prank, resulting in a quality 48 minutes of wasted time.

Netflix Live


Amazon’s Petlexa

An Amazon Alexa update that allows your beloved pets to interact with your Alexa home device just like you – but watch out, your cat can now order sushi all on its own.


Google Gnome

A spoof on Google Home, this friendly outdoor Smart Gnome promises to help you with your gardening, tell you the weather, turn on outdoor tools, but don’t you dare ask it to complete an “indoor request.”

Zappos Unstealable Boxes

Zappos takes it’s customer service to the next level by announcing their new invisible, unstealable boxes to combat parcel theft. “With one touch of a button, your delivery goes from timely to transparent.”


This is a fun way to generate buzz around your business, but it can very easily go wrong, so if you decide to pull an April Fool’s prank on your customers next year, proceed with caution!

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Zappos Pays Employees To Quit?

Few could argue that Zappos is not one of the giants of the shoe industry.  The company, the revenue of which was only $70 million five years ago (wait for it, there’s a comparison coming to put it into scale), expects to generate sales in excess of $1 billion this year.  The company has been successful to a large extent because of its innovative strategies and great customer care, putting a strong emphasis on establishing an “emotional connection” with customers.

One genius strategy employed by Zappos is paying its employees to quit, according to Harvard Business Review.  When Zappos hires new employees, it provides a four-week training period to “immerse them in the company’s strategy, culture, and obsession with customers.”  While employees are compensated for this training period, after a week of training they are given what Zappos calls “The Offer.”  This offer allows the employee-in-training to quit and take home pay for training, as well a $1,000 bonus.

The genius behind this idea is that Zappos is looking for a strong sense of commitment, so those who opt for the $1,000 obviously are not committed (about 10% do take the money and leave).  Many companies struggle to hire committed persons who make their company memorable.  Zappos has developed one unique strategy for meeting this need which, at first, goes against common sense.  However, Zappos’ hefty revenue attests to the success of their strategy.

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