Missouri State students love the Campus Hawk, whether it’s soaring through the sky or controlling squirrel populations. Students love the John Q. Hammons Fountain even more.
Why not blend the two campus icons into one April Fools’ Day prank?
What we did
The offices of web and new media, university communications, and photographic services developed content for the prank. It lived on the Missouri State homepage April 1, 2017.
- Web designer Chris Austin used Photoshop to place a Boomer Bear cardboard cutout, a caution sign, a hawk and a nest in a real photo of the fountain. The team used this image on the homepage and within the linked content.
- New media specialist Kevin Agee wrote a story on Missouri State’s redesigned news website. The story included Austin’s graphic and another photo of Leonard Haymans (the Fountain Guy). Staff photographer Jesse Scheve took the images in the story.
The story revealed the April Fools’ Day prank in the last sentence. Astute readers also noticed the first letters of each paragraph spelled out “April Fools.”
The content generated almost 4,000 page views April 1, which represented an all-time high for the new news website. Web and new media shared the story on Facebook and Twitter.
- 45,000 reach
- 152 shares
- 2,500 link clicks
- 10,720 impressions
- 65 retweets
- 368 link clicks
— #CitizenBear (@MissouriState) April 1, 2017