LOST IN THE TRANSLATION
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?"
Coors put its slogan, "Turn It Loose," into Spanish, where it was read as
"Suffer From Diarrhea."
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.
Pepsi's "Come Alive With the Pepsi Generation" translated into "Pepsi
Brings Your Ancestors Back From the Grave" in Chinese.
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 "kokou
kole", translating into "happiness in the mouth."
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