Reasons why your email marketing strategy needs translation

One of the biggest challenges of running a business today is developing an effective marketing strategy. Given the fierce market competition in most sectors, figuring out how to best utilize the different marketing tools at your disposal is key. While content marketing, affiliations, and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) are all essential components of any successful marketing strategy, none of them can offer the returns of effective email marketing. According to statistics from leading brands and marketing pioneers, email marketing offers a higher marketing return on investment (ROI) than other marketing channels. (more…)

The role of translation in Italian industry

Italian Industry Translation

Since its industrialization after World War II, Italy has become the world’s eighth-largest industrial economy. One of the country’s strengths is manufacturing, primarily in small and medium-sized, often family-owned, businesses. Italy’s main industries include tourism, machinery, clothing and textiles, iron and steel, motor vehicles, chemicals, footwear, food processing, and ceramics. We’re going to take a look at three of Italy’s most thriving industries and the role that professional Italian translation plays in each sector (more…)

How marketing translation can make or break your brand

Advertising and marketing are key in creating brand identity and many companies will spare no expense in hiring top professionals to ensure their brand attracts its target market. The same attention is not always paid to the translation of their marketing materials, however, which can lead to misrepresentation of their company, and even some costly blunders.

The importance of professional marketing translation should not be underestimated, but it’s also worth noting some of the specific challenges this field can have, and why it’s vital to employ a skilled translation service that specializes in the sector. Translating advertising copy requires a deep understanding of the nuances of the target audience culture and being able to replicate in a new country the impact a brand has at home.

Translating humor is no laughing matter

So much of marketing is based on humor, which varies greatly from language to language and culture to culture. Things can get particularly tricky when the humor is based on wordplay, such as puns or idioms. When this kind of copy is translated literally at best it can be nonsensical and, at worst, offensive. Take the classic example of KFC’s first restaurant in Beijing in 1987, where their famous slogan ‘Finger-lickin’ good’ was translated as ‘We’ll eat your fingers off’!

When attempting to render this kind of copy in another language, it’s highly recommended that you consider transcreation, rather than simple translation. This process takes onboard cultural differences and idiomatic language and creates a translation that works in the same way the original does for the new audience, though it might literally vary greatly from the original.

Repetition, alliteration, and rhyme

A lot of advertising language makes use of repetition, alliteration or rhyme to creative catchy taglines or slogans that are easy to remember. Think of KitKat’s ‘Have a break, have a KitKat’, Panasonic’s ‘A better life, a better world’, or Pringle’s ‘Once you pop, you can’t stop’. These kinds of literary devices can be notoriously difficult to translate; a literal translation in these instances could lose both meaning and the catchy sounds. Again, this is where transcreation comes into play.

A picture speaks a thousand words

When it comes to advertising, words aren’t everything. A brand’s logo, color scheme, and taglines all come together to create a brand identity and should all be considered when translating that identity for an overseas market. An image that is perfectly OK in one country could be confusing or insulting in another. Take the diaper brand Pampers, who found that their image of a stork delivering a baby confused consumers in Japan, where folklore says that new-borns arrive floating down a river in a giant peach. Or Gerber baby food who launched their product in the African market with a picture of a baby on the label. This horrified local customers as in many African countries the ingredients are displayed on the label in picture form, leading many to question if the baby food actually contained babies!

Color is also an important consideration, as the meanings of colors vary from culture to culture. In the US orange, for instance, is associated with fall, harvest, and Thanksgiving; in the Middle East, it is linked to mourning and loss. Knowledge of the symbolism of color and imagery in the target culture can be used to boost the brand image. Consider Red Bull who in China produces their drink can in gold with a red bull as these colors are considered to be lucky in Chinese culture.

As you can see, there’s a lot more to marketing translation than might be expected. Investing in a qualified marketing translation service could make or break your company in their new overseas markets.

Is your company planning to expand internationally? Get in touch with specialized marketing translator’s BeTranslation for more information or for a free quote today.

How to be more professional as a freelancer

how to be more professional as a freelancer

Operating as a sole trader or freelancer gives you a lot of freedom, but it also means taking on many roles all at once. You need to do more than be a talented translator: you must be a keen business person, IT specialist, accountant, HR department, and marketer. You have to wear all these hats as a freelancer, and if you don’t juggle them successfully, then you run the risk of looking unprofessional and losing clients.

Managing such a professional image and customer service is a challenge, and many don’t know where to start. With this guide, you’ll learn the key areas to focus on in order to become more professional as a freelancer:


Business writing: how to improve your translation skills

Business writing and translation

Business culture has changed, with more business than ever being conducted in writing, rather than in person. A decade or two ago to talk with colleagues you would have just walked down the hall or held a face to face meeting, but today you are more likely to send an email. Effective business writing skills are, therefore, more important than ever.