Every company knows how crucial communication is for its marketing strategy. And when a company decides to expand globally, even its brand needs to be globalized. The whole company’s image has to be translated and adapted for different markets and cultures in order to appeal to local customers.
Such a deep and specialized translation is often called transcreation. The term itself, the combination of translation and creation, suggests the level of creativity involved in the process. The aim of transcreation is to recreate the emotional intent of the original content while making it appropriate for the target locale. The translated marketing message will be tailored for the intended audience and resonate well in the different cultural context.
The challenges of transcreation
Every translation involves creativity; however, in general, the focus is on faithfulness to the source material. In contrast, a persuasive marketing message requires some boldness and the translator is encouraged to adopt a more creative approach. The translator should also have a thorough knowledge of the cultural background of the source and the target languages, in order to understand why the advertising message works and how to reproduce its effect.
The transcreation of an advertising message is a complex process because marketing strategies adopt various media:
- Audio and video announcements
- Social networks
Each one poses specific problems during localization. For example, texts are often embedded in images or framed in fixed layouts with little room for adjustments. The number of words is limited, and they have to be chosen with extreme care.
Machine translation and its risks
Taking into consideration this wide variety of contents, in the best-case scenario, a machine-translated text will reproduce the literal meaning of the original. When you globalize though, words and images may have new implications for other cultures. A machine cannot recognize the emotions that the original message conveyed to the audience, and therefore the emotional connection with the audience can slip away. Moreover, marketing texts rely on slogans, puns, wordplay, and idioms: all these elements are impossible to translate literally. There is the risk of completely losing the effectiveness of the localized marketing campaign.
How can you attract customers all around the world?
Entrust your marketing translations to professional linguists.
Only linguists with a certain degree of conceptual dexterity can create texts that will be perceived the same way in each language. And only professional human translators immersed in their native cultures can take into consideration the social and cultural aspects of a marketing strategy. A persuasive marketing message will not only describe a product, but also intrigue, persuade, and ultimately make people trust the company.
The key to success: collaboration
A successful transcreation process requires communication. Clients should define exactly what kind of image the company wants to have worldwide. Transcreators can help provide cultural advice; for example, they can warn the client if the target audience might consider a particular image or concept offensive. Any perceived lack of respect for local values and beliefs may damage the company’s brand. It is important to maintain ongoing collaboration to detect possible issues before they transform into real problems.
The result of a successful transcreation is not the same content translated in various languages. The goal is to realize contents that will stimulate the same reaction in each local audience. The localized materials can and most likely will be very different, but what really matters is that the marketing message is respected and it resonates with the target audience in the same way the original did.
ICanLocalize is a leading translation service provider that works with the best native professional translators and offers translations in more than 45 languages. We are experts at mobile app localization (including iPhone and Android localization), website localization, and software localization. Find out more about our amazing rates and quality of work here: www.icanlocalize.com. You are welcome to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Skype (icanlocalize).