Can you hear me now? This phrase may sound familiar to many since it was the infamous tagline from a former Verizon Wireless campaign. Although the wireless retailer used the expression to showcase its superior cell phone reception, it has a much greater significance in the context of global business. Speech is crucial to the way businesses operate on a daily basis, and it’s a major part of our society and culture. Human voice recordings are heard everywhere, from online training modules and advertisements, to websites and message machines. As a result, international organizations must consider translating any and all spoken words when marketing and selling their products and services globally. This includes audio advertisements, products that involve speaking or spoken words, and vocal services, like over the phone customer service. Continue reading »
As the business realm becomes increasingly global, a company’s ability to maximize its reach is wholly dependent upon how well it handles languages barriers. Global communications means conducting business in languages other than English, as a recent report from The Economist explained that eight of the fifteen fast growing global markets do not speak English as their native language. Expanding globally does not require setting up in-country infrastructure but it does require establishing seamless digital platforms. The first step towards seamless digital platforms is an accurate website translation. Continue reading »
The quality of your translated content is crucial. You need to be positive that the materials your business sends to consumers convey messaging that aligns with your brand. In today’s global marketplace, you also need to ensure that your content has been accurately and appropriately translated into your target languages, and localized to be relevant in your target markets. In short, you need high-quality translations. But, when your business is approaching a translation project, how do you measure the quality of translation that different Language Service Providers (LSPs) have to offer? Many companies ask potential LSPs for sample translations, which may seem like an appropriate solution to this dilemma, but it’s actually not the best idea. Continue reading »
You operate a global business: the international clients you serve speak multiple languages, but are still able to use your products thanks to the translations supplied by your language service provider (LSP). Now, let’s say you’re releasing an updated version of one of your most popular products in Japan. In order to promote the product in the Japanese market, you’re going to have to tweak all your content related to the product, including your current marketing campaign, to reflect the new features that this product has to offer. Once you’ve developed the copy, you’ll have to send it out to your LSP and wait for them to translate all of this new material and review it with your in-country teams or have a 3rd party review the translation. Multiply this repetitive, time consuming cycle by the number of new markets you’re targeting, plus each and every market you already serve. That’s a lot of translating. But what if there was an easier way to get consistent, high-quality translations? Well, there is actually and it’s called Translation Memory (TM). Continue reading »
Today, one click of a mouse can take you halfway around the world without having to leave the room. We’ve grown accustomed to this information convenience, and have come to expect it from all businesses. Now, more than ever, website translation is vital for companies looking to thrive in the global marketplace. Having a website that supports multiple languages is essential because consumers of your information from every corner of the world are potential clients. With this recent shift to digital, everyone’s under increased pressure to deliver more ROI faster than ever before and with less resources. With more channels, devices and opportunity, it’s becoming increasingly important that your websites connect and convert in any language. Having a multilingual website enables your business to target international consumers effectively, since they are able to understand your message and make an informed purchase decision. But managing a multilingual website can be a painful task and involves multiple steps with plenty of room for error. Continue reading »
Have you ever wondered how a business prepares a product for the global marketplace? How does merchandise that was originally intended for customers in one world region transform into something that is fully functional for international users?
If you think that the answer is localization, you’re not wrong, but you’re missing a key step in this conversion process: internationalization. Before a product or service can be localized, it must undergo a specialized internationalization procedure that readies it for multiple language support without changing its core application.
What is Internationalization?
Internationalization (often symbolized as i18n due to the 18 letters that fall between the ‘I’ and ‘N’ in the word) is the process of readying products for international markets and ensuring that they can seamlessly be localized in the future. It involves redesigning and re-engineering a product to prepare it for localization services, so that it will eventually be ready for use by consumers from all over the world. Thus, it’s a practice you should give some serious consideration to if you’re thinking about taking a product to global markets. Continue reading »
As the translation industry continues to grow in 2013, so does the technology that drives it. Clients and developers select the tools easiest to use and most efficient to their production. Users will need to learn to embrace and sell these technologies with a new mindset, and developers are excited to dive in and elevate technology to the next level.
Augmented Reality (AR) is the term for a live view of a real-world environment whose elements are improved by computer-generated imagery. AR is a combination of a real scene and a virtual scene that takes a real object and uses technologies to add contextual data, deepening a user’s understanding of it. Continue reading »
Using Web localization to effectively reach your global audience
I know it, and you know it. Yet, it continues to be the giant elephant in the room. You need to have your finger on the pulse of your customers, and potential buyers. Without a firm understanding of their behavior patterns, interests and pain points, you cannot effectively market to them.
Who is doing web localization right?
Organizations are struggling with this challenge on a daily basis. Sure there are a multitude of different approaches; but we’ve found two travel and hospitality companies that are doing it particularly well.
I find Alan Pelz-Sharpe’s recent article extremely interesting, particularly the second trend he identifies: “Multilingual requirements will rise to the fore.” According to Pelz-Sharpe, “Of all the trends I have observed…that is the strongest by far.”
From a translation/localization service provider perspective, this is certainly good news! I run Lionbridge’s global marketing efforts, so I empathize with other marketers when I consider all the things under the marketing umbrella that we need to consider for translation. One example that comes to mind is this blog. There aren’t many multilingual blogs out there yet, but I believe this will be the year that many more global companies head this way. Lionbridge may be one of those companies, and we’re taking some time to be strategic, by considering the following 8 issues: Continue reading »