Just When You Thought Branding Was Easy!

Here’s a fun read that outlines the challenges of creating a name for a product that transcends language.

Quaker Oats was lucky. The United States company, with its distinctive Quaker man logo, ventured into China without planning a Chinese brand. Local consumers found the Quaker man logo rather amusing and coined the nickname, ‘lao ren pai’ (literally: ‘Old Man Brand’).

But Polo Ralph Lauren, the fashionable clothing company whose logo is a mounted polo player, might not have been so fortunate. The Chinese christened the mark ‘san jiao ma’ (Three-legged Horse). There is a world of difference between the image of a deformed horse and upmarket polo!

Branding lost (and found) in translation – MARCH 13, 2004

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