Typos In Uber’s Full-Page Ads Leave Twitter Flummoxed

When you buy a front page ad in a national newspaper, you are guaranteed some attention. But this isn’t the sort of attention that Uber would’ve bargained for after its splurged on some ads in India’s leading dailies.

Twitter users have been mocking the typos in Uber’s latest ad campaign, which was splashed across newspapers over the weekend. In Hindustan Times’ Delhi edition, Uber carried a huge message asking readers if they’d like to “head out of the Delhi.” The “the” in the sentence was clearly extraneous, and eagle-eyed readers were quick to spot it. “Is advertising dead? Not yet. It’s just recalibrating itself to new standards. Here is a global client and a MNC ad. agency getting together to spend millions on a full page print ad. with a glaring error in the headline,” wrote a Twitter user.

“Unbelievable. I see this at work and outside every day. People with very high qualifications on paper cannot write basic sentences without grammatical errors. Astonished that Uber let this get published as a front page ad,” wrote another user.

To make matters worse for Uber, the Delhi edition wasn’t the only ad that it had messed up on. The Mumbai ad had a typo on the front page too, with Uber telling users that they could take an Uber “at anytime”, instead of “at any time.” 

More interestingly, Uber managed to invent a whole new city for its Mumbai ad, writing Bhimashankari when it presumably meant the town of Bhimashankar. “My dear Uber… please tell me where is “Bhimashankari” located? Probably the copywriter is from Bengaluru and thought the jyotirling of Bhimashankar must be a goddess like Bhimashankari,” a Twitter user joked.

And Uber’s misery didn’t end there. People in Karnataka claimed that its ads in Bangalore had “bad translations.”

Front-page ads in leading dailies can cost a bomb — a single ad can easily cost in the tens of lakhs, and go up a crore. The money is thought to be well worth it, because these ads can attract lots of eyeballs. Uber did get eyeballs all right — just not in the way that it would’ve hoped.