What is Marketing Translation?
Updated: Dec 15, 2022
Marketing translation, not only, requires the translation of one language to another, but it also involves delivering an accurate marketing message, while considering the cultural preferences, local sensitivities, customs and habits of the target market(s).
In addition to understanding the different aspects of marketing, a professional marketing translator should also have proficient skills in copywriting to appropriately promote products/services, and so on.
A marketing translator needs to be knowledgeable about different writing styles while considering the proper adaptation of the style and content to fit the specific culture.
Crafting a successful marketing translation requires various skills, beyond just translating.
A linguistic professional, not only, needs to fully understand the language, but they also need to be creative enough to produce a marketing message for the target market that conveys the same meaning, nuances and tone, without losing the impact of the original message.
The goal is to create a culturally sensitive copy that conveys the client’s message as if it were specifically crafted for the target audience.
At Language Concepts, we pair the target language with a native linguistic professional to keep our marketing translation services as accurate and culturally sensitive as possible.
Marketing Translation Services
International companies that sell their brand in various countries require marketing translation services to appropriately appeal to their foreign consumers.
All marketing content should be thoroughly translated, from social media posts to video scripts, product descriptions, advertisements, broadcasting materials and more.
Here are some factors to keep in mind during the translation of marketing materials:
Marketing Translation Varies from Direct Translations
Marketing translation services require more than direct translations because there are more cultural factors to consider, such as how the brand will be perceived to the new target audience.
While a marketing translation focuses on the target language, a marketing translator needs to have the ability to convey the same marketing message in the target language.
Marketing content is specially tailored to a brand, so it’s important to express the same message during a marketing translation, otherwise, the translation won’t properly resonate the same as it did to its original audience.
For example, American beer brand Coors launched its “Turn it loose” campaign in Spain, and quickly realized that the expression was interpreted as “Suffer from Diarrhea” when translated into Spanish.
While the expression means something playful in one language, it could mean something entirely different in another.
The Marketing Translation Should Have Local Appeal
It’s vital that a professional marketing translator lives in, or is from, the target county, so they fully understand the local culture.
A native translator can understand idiomatic expressions, slang and other linguistic and cultural nuances that a regular translator may not. This is because some languages use words that don’t have direct translations in other languages.
In addition, some expressions, advertising tactics, images, photos and so on, may not be acceptable to the target culture.
Marketing Humor is Different in Every Culture
Metaphors, idioms and humor are often used in advertising and marketing. Humor that’s accepted and understood by one audience may not translate well to another.
It’s important to find a translation company who specializes in marketing translation because they will consider all the cultural preferences to craft a compelling and appealing copy in the target language.
While the marketing translation may not exactly match the original text, the message will still be the same.
Slogans are Challenging in Different Markets
Slogans are carefully crafted to embody the significance of the product so the public will remember the brand.
While slogans are translatable in some markets, they’re challenging in others.
For example, Pepsi marketed their slogan “Come Alive! You’re in the Pepsi Generation” in the States. When China attempted to translate this, it read, “Pepsi Brings Your Ancestors Back from the Grave.”
This inaccurate translation caused Pepsi’s reputation to crash in China.
The voice and value of the brand should stay consistent throughout every market you’re advertising to.
At Language Concepts, we help clients assess brand names to avoid any negative connotations, difficulty of pronunciation, existing product or brand association, etc. in Latin American countries.
Consider Your Packaging Design
Selling a product requires marketing materials such as packaging and ad layouts with different colors, images and designs to enhance the brand’s appeal.
The packaging/design of a brand helps consumers identify with the brand. While some colors, images and designs resonate in one culture, they’re excused in another.
For example, in Africa, it’s normal for people to believe that the image on the product label is what’s inside the packaging that they’re buying. Gerber began selling its baby food in Africa and wasn’t successful doing so, due to that cultural misunderstanding.
Product label colors can also affect marketing.
Be cautious using the color white while marketing in the Chinese culture, as it is typically associated with death and the color of choice at funerals. This is the opposite in the U.S., where the color white is recognized as a color of purity, innocence or a fresh start.
Translation of Marketing Materials
There are various aspects to consider during a marketing translation, but the most vital is conveying the same message from the original text.
A professional marketing translator should understand the cultural differences between the original language and target language to accurately translate the marketing materials to the target market.
Language Concepts provides marketing translation services for Hispanic and Asian communities looking to expand their businesses to other markets.
Marketing documents we translate and/or adapt include but are not limited to:
Taglines, & More!
Contact us for any questions or inquiries on our marketing translating services, and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.