“Hey did you hear that Warwick was -8 deg C last night” – My Wife
On a day where we all scam each other with outrageous pranks and jokes I think it is only fitting that I launch this blog officially. My wife upon hearing the above information and sharing it with me then realised today’s date, April 1st. The only day we really examine everything to determine if people are telling truth online or not. With the rise in scams we should be examine everything carefully to determine if what we are told is truthful or not.
Now before I go into the real scams that have caused harm to people in future posts I thought I would start of with some of the April fools jokes we can all laugh about. Just understand that these jokes use similar principles to those which cause us harm. One of those is activating trust. As humans we tend to develop trust in people or organisations which can then be used to exploit us.
Take the following examples:
Now how do you judge calls for a new product by a marketing test without generating the product (the scam, it does not exist beyond this image). April fools day is a great way to test concepts by marketing for new products without the concept testing and research to make sure the formula is just right. I personally would not buy beans with weetbix. However this next one is something I might try:
Now Mars have come out and said it was an April fools, that this does not exist. However I am thinking people will actually go out, buy both m&m’s and Skittles and try mixing them. I know I am certainly curious.
So there you have two examples of marketing products that do not exist, but put forward as the latest thing. They won’t hurt anyone with these, it is clear that they are April Fools Jokes. However if someone was fooled to check the supermarket for these products, then they might also be fooled by an online store where they will happily accept payment for a product that does not exist. Here are a few things you can use to check if the product is real:
- Does the manufacturer have a website listing the product? (Do you trust the manufacturer?)
- Does the manufacturer have a list of authorised stockists? (Is the store on that list?)
- Is there independent product reviews for the product?
Verify the product is legitimate before buying the product and always check the returns / money back policy as well as the country the store trades from. Some countries do not have consumer protection laws in case of faulty goods or goods not suitable for purpose.
Hope these tips help you and welcome to this blog. More to come.