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Langpros’ Matteo Ippoliti emphasizes the need for top-quality translation services for businesses

By Matteo Ippoliti, Founder and CEO, Langpros

The importance of translating advertisement and marketing material

There’s no doubt that the pandemic has rocked the world. Nowhere is that more prevalent than in our economy. Many businesses are struggling just to keep their doors open, and some have been forced to shut down permanently because they simply can’t afford to stay afloat.

However, we don’t have to lose the economic battle to COVID-19. Through the use of translation and localization services, we can still keep our companies alive and prosperous, and continue to remain available for the community.

The current situation has produced an unseen peak in online content consumption across the globe, driving an increasing number of interactions from offline into the online realm. The internet has become a significant business delivery channel even for industries traditionally bound to physical presence.

We’ve also observed a  major shift in behavioural trends in these unprecedented times like the demand for e-commerce rising to new levels, remote working, and live-streamed events, just to name a few.

Some of these behaviour changes may be temporary, but many are likely to be permanent. So, it is crucial to understand user journeys and the related “lifecycle stages”.

Now more than ever it is essential to be present in local markets since customer’s needs are changing and many cultures are interacting remotely way more than in the past.

One of the most popular options for companies operating globally is content localization. This approach consists of adapting content for new markets, going beyond language and simple translation.

High-quality content localization is important for the success of any marketing campaign. In fact, poor localizations are not only ineffective but in the worst-case scenario, they could also jeopardize the reputation of the company.

Digital marketing through websites and social media content is becoming more and more popular among global companies. Giving social media users the best experience in terms of content can give a significant boost to your business.

While good translation could sometimes be the best way to create engagement depending on the target market, you might want to adapt the content and recreate it through localization, while retaining the original zing.

Risks and challenges

Just because the business has been hit by COVID-19, it doesn’t mean that the need for translation and localization has suddenly stopped being useful. In fact, there has been more demand now.

Marketing campaign standardization could be risky since the relevance of local cultures is still very substantial and the importance of socio-cultural components and politico-legal ones are essential factors to consider.

There are many different ethnicities, and as a result, there are also several different languages as well. As a growing business, you’ve most likely focused on building your work from a perspective that benefits English speakers (as would make sense, considering it could be the primary language) and had those with English as a second language try to work around it.

However, this method of thinking excludes those who do speak English as a second language or who don’t speak English at all and also makes your customer pool smaller as a result. With translation and localization services, you can completely change the game.

Localization and marketing campaign adaptation is a must to convey a message without risking to lose the spirit or the identity of the languages involved.

The aim is the good understanding of the advertising message on the targeted market embracing the customer’s needs of identification, complicity and empathy that is required in order to deal with this pandemic.

It may be difficult for someone to embrace this frame of mind in a situation where the globe is struggling against this mutual enemy and economic resources might be fewer but making the mistake of underestimating the importance of localization now could affect your business.

Brand name localization examples, campaigns adapted to different markets and epic fails

Marketing translation strongly differs from the translation of technical texts such as instruction manuals and pharmaceutical leaflets or financial and legal documents.

While translators strive to achieve the best results in terms of accuracy and consistency of terminology, marketing localization requires a strong dose of creativity and cultural awareness to be able to seize the concept behind the original advertisement and re-write it for the target market.

What challenges the translator is both linguistic and cultural aspects. Often advertising departments play with puns, idioms, and cultural references that would not make sense outside of their original context.

The translator has to be able to find another way to replicate the same idea without a mere word-to-word translation. Take the example of HSBC’s claim “Assume Nothing”, which was translated word-by-word in many countries as “Do Nothing”: the rebranding campaign cost the company $10 million.

Ads are also often culturally-specific, and what works in one culture might not be perceived as funny or engaging in another. This is especially true with markets that are very far apart both linguistically and culturally.

Translators have to avoid translating what may sound inappropriate for the target culture and replace it with something that works better. This also applies to the phonology of brands: for example, Pepsi advertises their soda in Argentina as “Pecsi”, adapting to the pronunciation of the locals.

Localizers might consider the different style of formatting text, but also the different consumer habits and shared traditions.

Solution

Nowadays translating words is not enough. Localization and Transcreation are two essential processes that can be applied to multilingual marketing content strategies.

Transcreation is how we call the merging of translation and marketing copywriting. With this method the translator analyses the source text and thanks to their creativity, they recreate the same emotions conveyed by the original in a different way, adapting to the cultural and linguistic context of the target market.

Transcreation is localization’s next step. As suggested by the term, it is the combining of translation and creative writing. This mode adds to the consistency of the message and the adaptation of content, the emotional element, working on local style, idioms, and phrasing.

The person in charge of transcreation works closely with the marketing team in order to understand the goals of the campaign, contributing to its success.

Transcreation is the best option for businesses wanting to create emotions that resonate with the local public, create engagement and are pleasant to read.

By investing in localization services, you automatically begin to open your doors up to a wider community of consumers, making your product or services available to more potential clients. Even with the presence of social distancing due to COVID-19, you can begin to create stronger bonds with the community around you and boost your online visibility as well, which will, in turn, create more sales during the pandemic.

The best part is that after the pandemic subsides, you’ll have these powerful tools already in your arsenal, so you will be well ahead of the game and generating strong business leads.

Langpros’ customers choose top-quality translation services to get ahead of the competition and make their business thrive. Since 2011, they appreciate top-quality interpreting, remote interpreting, translation, and copywriting services in over 100 languages. Some of the most prominent international organizations, such as Mazda, Luis Vuitton, UNICEF, and The Economist, have chosen our language services for their projects.

Professional interpreters and translators at Langpros have worked for hundreds of high-profile events, propagating the voice of global leaders and VIPs: from Pope Francis and H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum to football legend Cristiano Ronaldo, Italian Deputy Prime Minister Luigi Di Maio, and many others.

Our clients operate in every industry: from legal firms to hospitals and clinics, manufacturers, e-commerce websites, marketing agencies, oil & gas companies, or luxury and hospitality brands.

At Langpros, we do our utmost to offer only our best language services to our clients and make sure they continue to climb the ladder and get ahead of the competition.

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