Prague Signage – Subliminal Advertising
I’m English in a foreign land so my eyes are constantly scanning for English Language information even without me knowing it. And then it happens – click – like a mental deja vu I’m suddenly aware that I’ve just noted something not quite the full shilling. Now it’s just a question of the detail. How horrendous is the mistake and is it funny. When I worked in China I collected many signage examples but these were clearly attempts at using some English translator circa 1994. In Prague it’s much more subtle and can be funny in an awkward kind of way.
So I was looking through my old pictures to find a few examples when it suddenly struck me that I had been affected, I had become a victim of subliminal marketing.
You know when you walk past the same sign everyday that you don’t even read what it says anymore. They can change the colour, the font, background but the text is the same. But put in a wrong letter or miss a letter and suddenly it’s got my full attention.
Prague Signage Coffee
Lets take for example my example of a local coffee shop in Prague. The first time I saw “Fresh Coffe” I laughed and felt pity for people that did not apparently know how to spellcheck. As I walked past it on my way to work my eyes would be drawn to it like a magnet. How did it come to get spelled like that? How much did they spend on it? Is there a refund possible? Has anybody ever said that Coffee has two “E”s? I Googled it just to make sure I wasn’t missing anything. And eventually for my sanity I went in and asked about the sign. The response Ja Vim (I know). But the strange thing was that thinking about this error actually caused me to miss the fact that another cafe had opened just down the street. I suspected that miss-spelling was actually a new marketing ploy.
Prague Signage Garnet
My second example again is a word with a missing letter, this time “Czech Garnet” describing it’s products as “Beutiful” at Prague airport terminal 1. Again I’m thinking someone didn’t do the degree in spellcheck. Lovely sign and obviously pricey I just wandered over and had to take a picture then somebody else wandered over and took a picture followed by a third. Now I’ve read about marketing to shoppers and if you can’t get them in the shop at least get a crowd outside to make it look interesting. Within 2 minutes, additional people plus some of the “crowd” had entered the shop for a look. Now call me crazy but did me noticing a spelling mistake start that little flow of customers.
I don’t know but as I’m now writing about these two places I think somebody somewhere has done a good subliminal job on me.