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13 Unfortunate Translations That Harmed Brand Reputations

It is important for companies to do adequate preparation and research before introducing a product into the international marketplace. How easily even "experts" can sometimes fall victim when their in-house marketing department is not fully aware of the local culture. Sometimes hiring a professional marketeer in the country is probably the best option. Otherwise, slogal translations might end up being a total fiasco!

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."

You can read the rest of these funny translations at the always interesting The Thinking Blog.

Michelle
Featured Blogger
InventorSpot.com

Comments
Nov 7, 2007
by Gloria Campos
Gloria Campos's picture

Love translation mess ups

These always make me laugh because I know how easily one thing can mean something else in another language.