Did you know that only around 25% of the world’s internet population uses English? There are billions of international internet users and potential customers that are out of reach for you because your content is not able to communicate with them.
But translating marketing content is not as simple as copying and pasting it into Google translate. There are a lot of intricacies within languages and to effectively communicate, your marketing content needs to take them into account.
In this post, we will look at how you can effectively translate your marketing content for global audiences.
Why Is It Hard to Translate Marketing Content
If translating marketing content was easy every business would do it – but it's not. One of the major reasons it is not is that translators aren’t copywriters.
Translators don’t work in marketing, they work in translation. Their aim is often to produce text that reads like it was originally written but in a new language. However, writing content for marketing requires a bit more finesse. There is a craft to marketing copy. Translation from a translator alone will often not do the job. There also needs to be a copyediting step in your process.
Translators only have the information that you give them to go on. The original text and your instructions are often the only information they have. You have to ensure that your instructions are clear and that your translator understands what parts of the copy are essential to your message.
There is the additional issue that across languages slangs, colloquialisms, and sayings are often not translatable. Words and sayings can have certain cultural significances that are hard to translate into another language. Your copy needs to be adapted to think about how you will translate any of this type of language. You can also think about how you can incorporate idioms and slang in your translated language to communicate more authentically with your audience.
To achieve great results in foreign markets there are some key steps you need to take in translating your marketing copy. Here is a quick guide to get you started.
Do your research. Before translating marketing content you first need to know that you will be able to successfully market your product in a new international market.
A call to action that sounds perfect in English might translate horribly. Before giving your marketing copy to a translator, you may need to adapt it to remove sayings that don’t translate or cultural references.
Keep your sentences short and simple so your message gets straight to the point and is easy to understand.
A translator will only do some of the job, you will also need to hire a copy editor.
Don't simply give a translator the text and expect them to create a perfect translation. You need to provide them with context, help them understand your audience and give them examples of your brand's tone of voice.
Understand the culture you are translating for. What is acceptable in one culture may not be in another and you may have to adapt your copy accordingly.
There will be elements of your copy that require localisation. Things such as currency symbols and units of measure will need to be translated and this needs to be clearly communicated to your translator.
Billions of internet users don’t use English as their primary language. By translating your marketing you can reach new audiences but to translate successfully you have to go beyond translating word for word. You need to take into consideration cultural differences and sayings you use in your language that will not translate.
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