Even the biggest brands can make mistakes when bringing their brand to new markets. A company should always carefully research and identify any cultural differences, or language translations, when expanding their business. You want to catch any possible missteps before they happen. Here are some epic fails for a good laugh.
When first launched in China, the brand name was translated as “bite the wax tadpole” or “female horse stuffed with wax,” depending on dialect. We’re pretty sure that’s not what Mr. Miyagi was talking about when he said, “Wax on…”
While marketing the Ford Pinto in Brazil, they discovered “Pinto” means “tiny male genitals.” In Belgium, their slogan “Every Car Has a High-Quality Body” was translated to “Every car has a high-quality corpse.” Redefining the acronym: Found On the Road Dead”!
Their slogan “Pepsi Brings You Back to Life” was translated to “Pepsi brings your ancestors back from the grave,” in China. Not only did it not make any sense, it was considered disrespectful. Clearly, they were able to resuscitate their brand after such an epic mistake.
The Mitsubishi Montero was originally called the “Pajero.” “Pajero” means “jerk” in Spanish, and they did not do well in Spanish speaking markets. No bueno.
In German, the letter “v” is pronounced as an “f”. When expanding to the German market, their brand name was suddenly German slang for sexual intercourse. We hope Vicks Vaporub didn’t end up in any odd places.
Their slogan “Turn it Loose” is slang for having diarrhea in Spanish. That’s not exactly what you want, after consuming a beverage. After all, you’re supposed to be able to drink the beer, not the water, right?
In Beijing, their slogan “Finger-Lickin’ Good” was originally translated to “eat your fingers off.” What!?! Is that why we have chicken fingers?
When expanding their advertising to Japan, they used the stork-bringing-babies image that is practically ubiquitous in western countries. However, this had no value to Japanese audiences. As a result, a lot of marketing dollars were wasted on a culturally irrelevant ad campaign.
The Importance of a Social Media Presence
Social media has become an integral part of our lives, with billions of people across the globe using these platforms to connect, engage, and share content. For businesses, social media provides a powerful opportunity to build brand awareness, connect with customers, and drive growth. In today’s competitive marketplace, having a social media presence is no…
Plan it, make it, stretch it, wrap it, ink it, spin it, long print run it : Flexographic
Flexographic printing is a form of direct relief printing that is characterized by the use of flexible printing plates. In the past, these printing plates were always made of rubber, whereas today, flexible photopolymer printing plates might also be used. These plates have a slightly raised image of the content on them, they’re inked, and…
Typefaces & Fonts Do More Than Transmit Words
Do the typefaces and fonts you choose for your brand materials matter? As long as it’s in a language the audience understands, they’ll get the intended message, right? Wrong. Typefaces and fonts are essentially the shapes of the letters. Shapes are multi-sensory, meaning they affect more than one of your senses and can easily elicit…
6 Reasons why a Strong Brand is Important for your Small Business
Building a strong brand is a critical component of any successful business. A well-crafted brand strategy not only helps businesses establish recognition and build trust with their customers, but also supports advertising efforts and inspires employees. Furthermore, strong branding can increase a business’s financial value and generate new business opportunities through word-of-mouth referrals. As the…
A Brand Refresh fit for a (Burger) King
Not too long ago, Burger King underwent a major brand refresh not too long ago! They hadn’t rebranded since 1999, and this new rebrand feels super fresh and juicy. At first glance, some may think they simply returned to their most successful old logos, of which appeared in 1969 and 1994 – but it’s so…
Advertising, Marketing, or Branding Agency?
Choosing an agency to help with your advertising, marketing, or branding needs can seem overwhelming. The agency you choose will play an important role in determining how your potential clients view your company. Which one do you need? If you imagine agencies in healthcare terms – marketing agencies are generalists (the basic needs), advertising agencies…
How Good Branding Saves Your Company Money
Many businesses make the mistake of throwing money at marketing without thinking enough about their brand, as a whole. Paid media campaigns might garner attention, but they can’t necessarily retain it and convert as many customers without solid branding. A company with a consistent, strong perception amongst audiences will always outperform competitors with the same…
What is Brand Consistency and Why is it Important?
Brand consistency means always delivering messages aligned with the core brand values in the same tone, presenting the brand’s visual language in a consistent way, and repeating the same colors throughout the cohesive brand experience. Over time, these elements become ingrained in the minds of consumers, and they’re more likely to remember your brand. Brand…