Cultural Pitfalls Tarnish Some Chinese Advertising

Cultural Pitfalls Tarnish Some Chinese Advertising -...

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January 19, 2004 ASIAN BUSINESS NEWS ON THE ROAD Visit the Auto Industry Page 1 , offering the latest consumer and business news about cars, trucks and the companies that make them. Cultural Pitfalls Tarnish Some Chinese Advertising By GEOFFREY A. FOWLER Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL Striking a patriotic chord might not help you win customers in China, but offending national pride is a surefire way to lose them. It is a lesson that Toyota Motor Corp. of Japan learned the hard way. In December, the auto maker had to pull and formally apologize for 30 magazine and newspaper advertisements depicting stone lions -- a traditional sign of Chinese power -- saluting and bowing to a Prado Land Cruiser sport-utility vehicle. "These ads were intended to reflect Prado's imposing presence when driving in the city," says Julie Du, account manager with Publicis Groupe "You cannot but respect the Prado," the ad says. But Chinese words often hold multiple meanings. Prado translates into Chinese as badao, which also means "rule by force" or "overbearing." Consumer critics who called Toyota and posted scathing messages in Internet discussion groups said the lions resembled those flanking the Marco Polo Bridge, the site near Beijing of the opening battle in Japan's 1937 invasion of China. DOW JONES REPRINTS
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This note was uploaded on 10/18/2011 for the course BUSINESS Bus 302 taught by Professor Pendergast during the Winter '11 term at Cal Poly.

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Cultural Pitfalls Tarnish Some Chinese Advertising -...

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