P&G's 'Bacon Mouthwash' Sounds Like an April Fool's Gag

Beware: It's That Time of Year When Marketers May Try and Pull Your Chain

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Procter & Gamble Co. has "launched" bacon-flavored Scope with a video from Publicis Kaplan Thaler, New York.

The question is, is it real? Well, it's got a hashtag, #ScopeBacon, and P&G has begun tweeting about it from its official @ScopeMouthwash account. It's also enlisted help from @Charmin, which has been taking a break from updates on the community managers' toileting activities to tout the new bacon-flavored variant today.

Trouble is (besides the fact that it sounds downright disgusting) the product has yet to show up on store shelves or in the search engines of online retailers, not even ThinkGeek.com, a leading purveyor of all things bacon-related. A spokesman for Scope declined to comment prior to 8 p.m. on April 1, if that provides any hints.

A spokeswoman from Scope's PR agency asked Ad Age to sign a non-disclosure agreement before talking (which we of course refused), signaling just how important this bacon initiative is. If this is, as suspected, an April Fool's prank, it's one of many that will be coming your way over the next few days. Brands have been using the day to blow off steam and get some earned media buzz for years.

Google, one of the masters of the form, has a history of hoaxes. As far back as 2000, the company created the "MentalPlex," which invites users to stare at a GIF while mentally projecting what they wanted to search for.

Here are a few more adland players that are getting in on the action. If you know of any more April Fool's pranks planned, tell us in the comments.

1. Chupa Chups BBH Asia Pacific launched this video on YouTube this week, for lollipop brand Chupa Chups. It features a "street artist" making weird and wonderful things using the suckers.

2. American Eagle Perhaps not exactly an April Fool's joke, since the retailer announced this last week, but a prank nonetheless. The brand introduced its new, limited edition "AEO Skinny Skinny Jeans," which are basically a couple of spray paint cans in different washes. If you go over to the site, you'll be told they're sold out.

3. Illuminati/Mother New York After 237 years with their unspecified current agency and an ad strategy limited to teasers on U.S. currency, the Illuminati has named Mother NY as its new agency of record -- or so a press release "embargoed" for Monday said.

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