In his INC.com article, “20 Epic Fails in Global Branding,” Geoffrey James lists several brand marketing mistakes that did not translate well, and thus did not send the correct message to the consumer. His entire list can be found here, but here are a couple that I found amusing.
First on the list is Braniff International. The airline had a slogan, designed to promote their comfy leather seats, which read “Fly in Leather” in English. Harmless, until you translate it into Spanish and it becomes, “Fly Naked.” I’m pretty sure this is not the meaning that the company wanted to transmit to their Spanish customers! The second one I found funny was farther down on his list. Our friendly Colonel Sanders’ “finger licking good” slogan turned heads in China when it translated to “eat your fingers off!”