3 popular ad campaigns that didn't translate overseas

Posted at 4:29 PM, Jul 24, 2017

They are your favorite ad campaigns for your favorite products, but what makes them popular here in the U.S. doesn't necessarily make sense in other languages. Kristina Guerrero has three ads that don't quite translate.

1. Pepsi

They came up with the "Come alive! You're in the Pepsi generation!” campaign to appeal to the youth of the ‘60s and it worked great in the U.S. It just didn’t do so well in China. It roughly translated to "Pepsi brings your ancestors back from the dead." Pepsi is good, but nothing is that good.

2. Ford Pinto

Gas shortages of the seventies made this small car a huge success in America and beyond, but sales were stalling in Brazil. It turns out that Pinto is the Portuguese word for male genitals. Ford ended up changing the name from Pinto to Corcel which means horse. Smart move!

3. Kentucky Fried Chicken

We're going back to China for this one. No matter who plays him, in Chinese "finger lickin' good" translates to "eat your fingers off.” Something tells us 11 herbs and spices can't make that taste good.

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