TikToker Kyle Scheele admits viral Kum & Go meal stunt was actually staged - Dexerto
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TikToker Kyle Scheele admits viral Kum & Go meal stunt was actually staged

Published: 1/Dec/2021 0:08 Updated: 1/Dec/2021 0:18

by Virginia Glaze

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TikTok star Kyle Scheele went viral after claiming he’d scored a deal with a gas station chain over a prank… but it turns out his “prank” was completely staged.

Plenty of influencers and celebrities have scored their own signature meal deals with various fast food brands — just take a look at Charli D’Amelio’s Dunkin’ Donuts bev or Saweetie’s viral McDonald’s dinner.

However, no influencers had bagged a deal with a gas station… until author, motivational speaker, and TikToker Kyle Scheele serendipitously partnered with Kum & Go due to what he claimed was a harmless prank.

The “prank” saw the influencer create a cardboard cutout of himself advertising his very own ‘Kyle Scheele Meal’ at a local Kum & Go station. The cutout instantly became a viral hit, attracting enough visitors to form a line outside the establishment to take a selfie with the “fake” ad.

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@kylescheeleSome friends try to get you into an MLM, I try to get you into an RHC (reverse heist crew) ##heist ##cardboardcutout♬ original sound – kylescheele

Kyle Scheele admits viral Kum & Go brand deal was planned

Scheele’s TikTok explaining the situation garnered over 28 million views, and viewers were ecstatic to learn that his stunt had earned him a legitimate brand deal with Kum & Go… or so they thought.

On November 29, Scheele uploaded a TikTok explaining that the entire “fake ad” prank had actually been planned alongside Kum & Go, who had been in on the practical joke the entire time — as previously reported by AdWeek.

According to Scheele, Kum & Go had approached him for a potential partnership, and asked him to come up with the “craziest thing” he could imagine. This ended up being his very own celebrity meal.

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@kylescheele##ad I’ve never been more excited to be able to use ##sponsored. We did it, you guys! @kumandgo @Red Bull USA @No Kid Hungry♬ original sound – kylescheele

When it came to actually pulling off the stunt, though, Scheele said that it was not an “elaborate corporate marketing stunt” planned by execs. Instead, he claimed that he was given free reign to do as he pleased, resulting in the viral cardboard cutout.

“Kum & Go didn’t plan or orchestrate any of that,” he explained. “They just gave me permission to run wild.”

“That was a ton of fun, but even though they didn’t plan it or orchestrate it, they did know about it, and in retrospect, I should have just been upfront and told you about it.”

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@kylescheele#ad An update on the Kyle Scheele Meale, with an overdue apology. #sponsored @kumandgo @redbullusa♬ original sound – kylescheele

The overall response to Scheele’s apology video has been a negative one; many fans are upset with the TikToker for representing his partnership with the gas station as a prank that paid off, with some accusing the star of “emotional manipulation.”

Kyle Scheele TikTok response

Kyle Scheele TikTok response 2

Kum & Go’s director of brand marketing Matt Riezman also admitted to the plan in AdWeek’s article, leaving fans sad, confused, and angry over a seemingly wholesome influencer-brand interaction.