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Beyond borders: Marketers’ linguistic blunders

Pepsi’s tagline “Come alive with the Pepsi Generation” This tagline in some translations reads “Pepsi brings your ancestors back from the grave.”

, ET Bureau|
Updated: Apr 29, 2013, 07.39 AM IST
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After extensive research that included evaluating the meaning of thousands of Chinese characters, Coca-Cola found a term that fits — ‘ko-kou-ko-le’ meaning “happiness in the mouth”
After extensive research that included evaluating the meaning of thousands of Chinese characters, Coca-Cola found a term that fits — ‘ko-kou-ko-le’ meaning “happiness in the mouth”
GERMANY

Clairol’s curling iron Mist Stick ‘Mist’ is a German slang word for manure.

Ikea’s children’s bed range Gutvik Gutvik sounds like “good f#@k” in German

Puffs Tissues Puffs is a colloquial German term for whorehouse

FRANCE

Colgates toothpaste Cue Cue is the name of a popular French pornographic magazine too. Also French slang for ‘butt’

Audi’s E-Tron The word E-tron sounds like ‘étron’, a French word for ‘turd’

US baby food brand Gerber Gerber sounds a lot like the French word for vomit

RUSSIA

Mondelez

Mondelez (pronounced “mohn-dah-LEEZ”) is a Russian slang for oral sex

SPAIN

Nokia Lumia Lumia means prostitute in some Spanish dialects

Coors ‘Turn It Loose’ slogan Beer brand Coors’ slogan ‘Turn It Loose’ in Spanish slang translates into “get loose bowels”

Chevy’s Nova “No va” in Spanish means “no go” or “it doesn’t go”

CHINA

Coca-Cola ‘Ke-kou-ke-la’ means “bite the wax tadpole”.

After extensive research that included evaluating the meaning of thousands of Chinese characters, Coca-Cola found a term that fits — ‘ko-kou-ko-le’ meaning “happiness in the mouth”

Pepsi’s tagline “Come alive with the Pepsi Generation” This tagline in some translations reads “Pepsi brings your ancestors back from the grave.”

THAILAND

Ikea’s plantpot range Jattebra Jattebra sounds like a Thai slang for sex

JAPAN

Apple’s Siri

It is similar to the Japanese word ‘shiri’, meaning buttocks or ass
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