“Are you lactating?” – Mexico
“You’ll definitely eat your fingers.” – China
“Pepsi bring your ancestors back from the dead!” – China
“Every car has a high quality corpse.” – Belgium
“Female horse stuffed with wax” or “Bite the wax tadpole.” – China
If you haven’t figured it out yet, these are advertisements gone horribly wrong through translation. Can you guess which U.S. marketing campaigns go with which?
Come alive with Pepsi!
Every car has a high quality body. (Ford)
Coca-cola. Sounds like “Ke-Kou-Ke-La” in Chinese, which translates to “mare” and nascent amphibian, depending on the dialect.
When you’re tackling international SEO, it’s a much larger task than simply translating the copy on a website. It’s as much a piece of marketing as any advertising campaign, and to do it right (and avoid embarrassing yourself and the brand you’re working for) you have to understand the culture, dialects and idioms of your target audience.