Brand Names We Just Realized We've Been Mispronouncing

Over 5.8K Ranker voters have come together to rank this list of Brand Names We Just Realized We've Been Mispronouncing
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Vote up the brands you've been guilty of saying incorrectly.

It can be embarrassing to find out we're saying words incorrectly, but the sooner we change how we say them, the less awkward it will be. Many famous names are constantly mispronounced, including places, people, and products. Some popular brand names have pronunciations people struggle with the most.

So, here are some names we're saying wrong. Most have been mispronounced for so long that's it's difficult to say them right. Many of the brands are made in different countries, so the pronunciations depend on what language the founder spoke. If you've ever wondered how to say certain corporate names, now's the time to learn. 

If you've messed up these monikers for a long time, don't feel bad! Many of these are names almost everyone gets wrong.

  • 1
    2,924 VOTES

    Bayer is a German company (a very old one, founded in 1863), so those who don't know the language well usually pronounce it “BAY-er.” That's because American commercials for this pharmaceutical company say it that way. However, the correct pronunciation is “BY-er,” which is how it's pronounced in German commercials.

    2,924 votes
  • 2
    2,931 VOTES

    Most people in the US have been pronouncing this German automaker's name incorrectly, even if they own a Volkswagen. Americans usually say “Volks-WAH-gen" or “VOLKS-wah-gen." However, the correct German pronunciation is “FOL'KS-vahgn.” The “V” makes an “F” sound in German, and Germans do not linger on “A” sounds.

    2,931 votes
  • IKEA
    Photo: IKEA International Group / Wikimedia Commons / Public domain
    4,106 VOTES


    In October 2021, IKEA Singapore shared a post of fun facts related to the business. One tidbit revealed that most people have been pronouncing IKEA wrong all along. You're probably used to saying “ai-KEE-uh,” “ai-KAY-uh,” or even “EE-kia.” Al those guesses are incorrect. The company states that the correct way to say the name is “ee-KAY-uh.”

    4,106 votes
  • 4
    1,771 VOTES

    Even people proud to show off their TAG Heuer watch might not be confident enough to say the name. There's lots of controversy around how to pronounce it, starting with whether the first part is “tag,” “tog,” or “T.A.G.” For the second part, some people guessed it's pronounced “hee-wer,” “hew-er,” “hoyer,” “hyour,” or even “hor.” 

    The correct German pronunciation is actually “tag hoy-ah," with a silent "R."

    1,771 votes
  • Samsung
    Photo: Samsung / Facebook
    3,631 VOTES

    Americans pronounce this electronics brand exactly as it looks: “SAM-sung.” However, because it's a Korean brand, the vowels should be short and precise. The correct pronunciation would be “sum-sung” with short, simplified syllables. 

    3,631 votes
  • Hugo Boss
    Photo: HUGO / Facebook
    1,781 VOTES

    The name Hugo is commonly pronounced “hyoo-go,” but that's not the case for this fashion company. That's the American way to say the name, but this company is German. The correct version is “hoo-go baas,” as confirmed by the CEO in an interview. 

    1,781 votes