Lewis Hamilton is the biggest brand in Formula 1 at the moment, with the Brit driver having almost become synonymous with the sport all around the world.
Hamilton had always made it a point to have an image for himself outside of the race track as well, an identity that makes him sellable, an identity that makes him the brand that he is today.
And when you as a sportsperson want to become a massive brand in your sport, you need to interact with the fans and get that media attention to further enhance your fandom.
Lewis Hamilton has been successful in doing all of that all through his career, taking care of his image off the track and remaining accessible to fans all over the globe.
But sometimes things can go wrong when you don’t study your target audience well and that is exactly what happened with Hamilton yesterday, when he thanked Brazil in Spanish.
Brazilians speak Portuguese and while Spanish and Portuguese are pretty similar to each other, Brazilians don’t necessarily understand every word of Spanish.
And the fans weren’t quite impressed with Hamilton’s post, despite the fact the meant no harm.
— Joel Costa (@IamJoelCosta) November 12, 2018
Lol at Lewis Hamilton thinking we speak Spanish here, you’d think after taking part in this Grand Prix so many years he’d at least know our language 😂
— Thaís (@thais__ferrari) November 12, 2018
@LewisHamilton i appreciate your instagram story thanking us brazilians for the reception you had, but unfortunately we don’t speak spanish here and the half in english was probably the part most people here understood. anyway thanks come back soon gl
— manual-do-guerrilheiro-urbano.pdf (@jvmcarneiro) November 12, 2018
— The Drivealyzer (@drivealyzer) November 12, 2018
Aaaaaaaaa @LewisHamilton, we don’t speak Spanish at all!! Actually we don’t even speak a good portuguese. Why do you foreigners think we speak Spanish?
We are people from the 🇵🇹 crown, not the 🇪🇸 one. pic.twitter.com/8QIAzyzhnI
— Arthur Schaefer 🤡 #AumentoNão (@arthurrschaefer) November 12, 2018
Let me just say something, Brazilians speak Portuguese not Spanish smh 🤦🏻♂️ pic.twitter.com/Y39JtFV2bX
— PROCURADO (@LuizMarchiori1) November 12, 2018
— lightningstarr (@lightningstarr) November 12, 2018
Shoutout to Lewis Hamilton for thanking Brazil on Instagram… in Spanish. Whoops. 👀😂
— Dre (@Harrison101HD) November 12, 2018
— yzy (@thaizzus) November 12, 2018
Lewis Hamilton leaving a message in Spanish on his instagram for people in Brazil… You need a new pr team mate 🤦♂️ @LewisHamilton
— Mo-Mo (@ImaginaryCard) November 12, 2018
– Where are you from?
– Oh Brasil, beautiful. So you speak spanish, right?
– 🤦♂️ pic.twitter.com/Ll0FVvKdHL
— Estagiário da F1 (@EstagiariodaF1) November 12, 2018
Maybe Hamilton would want a word with his PR team after this.