A business guru once said, ‘the world is your oyster, go out there and win hearts and business.’ But this saying comes with a caveat.
Your sphere of influence is restricted to the linguistic demography of your target audience. What this means is that it’s difficult to convert non-English speakers if your videos are in English.
Businesses need not be disheartened by the limited reach of the videos. Particularly when so much effort has gone into their making.
Video translation and localization can remove language barriers to reach a wider audience. If you’re not sure why and how to use video translation, then this is the article for you.
Reasons to use video translation
We live in exciting times. Until a couple of decades ago, only big businesses had the budget to create marketing videos to target people in different regions of the world. Now, technical resources such as stock videos, Premiere Pro presets, voice-over actors, etc. are readily available to all businesses regardless of their size or marketing budget. Even with easy access to technical resources, we don’t see many businesses using video translation. What they need is some level of convincing, which we hope the points below will achieve.
Translation improves organic reach
Traffic through organic search still generates more leads than any other source. On average, businesses can expect around 53% of all traffic from organic search. This means you should take organic search marketing seriously and pursue any strategy that promises to boost your organic reach. The world’s biggest search engine, Google, is including more and more videos to its search pages.
By translating videos, you increase the chances of appearing in more pages of the Google search engine results for queries in multiple languages.
Increases engagement with the audience
Last week, I watched a heart-touching Thai commercial that made my day. I wouldn’t have understood it without the English subtitles on the video. This shows the incredible power of subtitles to boost engagement.
According to research, the viewing time goes up by 40% by the inclusion of subtitles. Hence, in addition to taking your video content to a new audience, translation also improves engagement with the audience.
Translation Boosts ROI
We may rejoice in the fact that the cost of video production has drastically decreased. Even so, well-made videos cost a pretty penny. Including translation in your video marketing strategy will increase your ROI and reduce your overall marketing cost. With a few minor changes (such as customization, subtitles, voice translation, etc.) you could use the same video to target different regions of the world. Within your target audience, look for groups with the highest video consumption, translating videos for these groups will improve reach, engagement, and ROI.
Tips to reach a global audience with video translation
So far, we have discussed why you must use video translation. Now, we move to the interesting and exciting part. You’ll find some of the best tips to reach a global audience with translation.
Develop a video translation strategy
Having a plan or strategy helps avoid indecision and mistakes. A translation strategy is vital if you’re to successfully reach a global audience with your fixed budget. Analysis of your business plan, target audience, and marketing objectives will help you to arrive at the following conclusions:
- The languages you need to target with the translation.
- The type of translation you need to aim for (dubbing, voice-over, or subtitles).
- The nature or method of translation required (employing software or human talent to translate).
- The number of videos to translate.
Prepare a detailed folder with music tracks, voice, and a document that explains the context of the video. You need to do this for each video that requires translation. Send these technical details to the translator.
Certain video types, this includes how-to and instructional videos, can perform well even with software translation or automated subtitle creation. The results that the software produces are good enough to convey the message to the viewers. For a professional touch (in the case of SEO-friendly multilingual websites) you can hire a human translator to edit the software outcome.
Hire a professional to translate the videos
The professional translator will be a constant companion, assisting and guiding, throughout the process. The translator’s inputs are required to convey the message that you intend.
Sometimes, the translator could also help in video localization. He or she will help to tailor the video to suit the tastes and sensibilities of the local population.
As hinted in the previous section, if the videos are jargon rich/contain too many sophisticated words, you need the services of a professional translator.
Bear in mind the translator must be well-versed in local metaphors, stories, comments, and idioms.
Give viewers enough time to read subtitles
The voice-over and subtitles must be presented with the right speed for the viewers to clearly understand the message. Ideally, the average voice-over speed shouldn’t be more than 190 words per minute.
Although a little more than the average is also acceptable, the result should be that the viewer clearly understands the visuals, voice-over, and subtitles.
While creating the videos, keep the lower section of the video free to add the subtitle.
Texts, logos, or objects relevant to the video in the bottom section would be hard to see with subtitles superimposing on them.
The transcript of the translated video must always be part of your content marketing tips.
It allows people to directly jump to the section of the content that matters to them. Businesses can include target keywords in the transcript to boost their organic reach.
Customize the video to add local flavor
B-roll clips, color presets, transitions, and stock videos would be vital in adding local flavor to the content.
Cultural localization is more important in video content than in text. While translating videos, make sure you leave nothing that would offend the non-English speaking target audience.
Neutral landscapes and images, although beautiful and suitable, won’t create the same impact as local or cultural images.
Some people get carried away and include too many changes. This could prove counterproductive.
To keep the video production cost in check and improve ROI, only add enough changes to create an impact on the local population or non-English speaking audience.
Create metadata and check content before releasing the video
The video is translated and transcribed. You have done everything possible to create visual content that would please your non-English speaking audience.
Now, provide metadata information so that search engine crawlers have no problem understanding your content.
Localizing the metadata will improve the visibility of your videos in local searches. Your translator would require the metadata (title, description, keywords, etc.) of the original videos for this purpose.
Once everything is in order, publish the translated video on landing pages and YouTube, post them on social media using marketing tools and send them to non-English speaking subscribers using newsletter software.
Video translation allows you to reach potential customers who speak a different language and live in a different country.
It will give your most engaging videos a wider exposure and help get higher ROI for your content.
Following the tips mentioned here will help take your solution to a wider audience, expand brand awareness, increase conversions, and boost your revenue.