Thursday, May 27, 2010

Some of these are very funny.

The Worst Slogan Translations Ever...

13) When Parker Pen marketed a ball-point pen in Mexico, its ads were supposed to have read, "It won't leak in your pocket and embarrass you." The company thought that the word "embarazar" (to impregnate) meant to embarrass, so the ad read: "It won't leak in your pocket and make you pregnant."

12) Scandinavian vacuum manufacturer Electrolux used the following in an American campaign: "Nothing Sucks like an Electrolux."

11) Clairol introduced the "Mist Stick," a curling iron, into Germany only to find out that "mist" is slang for manure. Not too many people had use for the "Manure Stick."

10) Coors put its slogan, "Turn It Loose," into Spanish, where it was read as "Suffer From Diarrhea."

9) Pepsi's "Come Alive With the Pepsi Generation" translated into "Pepsi Brings Your Ancestors Back From the Grave" in Chinese.

8) When Gerber started selling baby food in Africa, they used the same packaging as in the US, with the smiling baby on the label. Later they learned that in Africa, companies routinely put pictures on the labels of what's inside, since many people can't read.

7) Colgate introduced a toothpaste in France called Cue, the name of a notorious porno magazine.

6) Frank Perdue's chicken slogan, "It takes a strong man to make a tender chicken," was translated into Spanish as "it takes an aroused man to make a chicken affectionate."

5) When American Airlines wanted to advertise its new leather first class seats in the Mexican market, it translated its "Fly In Leather" campaign literally, which meant "Fly Naked" (vuela en cuero) in Spanish.

4) An American T-shirt maker in Miami printed shirts for the Spanish market which promoted the Pope's visit. Instead of "I saw the Pope" (el Papa), the shirts read "I Saw the Potato" (la papa).

3) The Dairy Association's huge success with the campaign "Got Milk?" prompted them to expand advertising to Mexico. It was soon brought to their attention the Spanish translation read "Are You Lactating?"

2) General Motors had a very famous fiasco in trying to market the Nova car in Central and South America. "No va" in Spanish means, "It Doesn't Go".

1) The Coca-Cola name in China was first read as "Kekoukela", meaning "Bite the Wax Tadpole" or "Female Horse Stuffed with Wax", depending on the dialect. Coke then researched 40,000 characters to find a phonetic equivalent "kokoukole", translating into "Happiness in the Mouth."


Merle said...

Dear Patty ~~ I hope Abe is doing well and the blood tests tomorrow are good. We do not heal as well as we did when we were young.
I am glad your weather has finally warmed up. Ours is cool or cold mostly.
Thank you again for the B'day card and good wishes. I have had a wonderful time this week and my son and d-i-l are coming tomorrow.
Take care dear friend.
Love, Merle.

Clytie said...

Some of these I knew about (Nova of course, and a few others). Most of them are new to me - and I love them! It shows how it pays to do your homework when marketing your goods in another language!

Wanda said...

Patty you are a breath of fresh funny air, in a world that has so many problems.

Thanks for our daily smile...we need it.

Continue to hold you and Abe in my heart, thoughts, and prayers. Love you tons.

I've had company this week, and haven't been visiting much.

Beth Niquette said...

I totally enjoyed each and every one of these--I used to own a 1976 special edition Nova--LOVED that car, laughed over the Spanish meaning of the name. (grin)

Thank you for sharing these--we've had a VERY hard week, and it is good to laugh.

Have you seen Clytie's blog? The pic you took of that gorgeous red flower is up this morning on Random Heart's Guest Heart Thursday. Gorgeous pic, I might add!

nituscorner said...

that was really interesting. the best one i liked was colgate's . lol.have taken note of it.

mommanator said...

good ones Patty

Margaret Cloud said...

Patty, these were so good. I liked the Nova one, since I use to own one but it ran good. It is amazing how one language translated into another is so different. Have a great Memorial day.