A content marketing strategy is essential for companies breaking into new markets. Even the most expertly translated content and marketing collateral can fall flat without the right marketing support. As a marketer, understanding the needs of specific foreign language markets, working off solid audience profiles, and having strong local support for translation and design is essential to avoid missteps. The following is a closer look at three examples of content that failed to hit the mark and how your company can avoid similar issues:
Choose Direct Language
A global content marketing strategy starts with a clear understanding of your high-level messaging. Your team can then adapt it to each local market, focusing on the nuances of that country and language while staying true to core guidelines. A major retail banker with the slogan “Assume nothing” found that this phrase was difficult to translate conceptually in many markets. When the team reevaluated and adopted the slogan, “The world’s private banker,” its service offerings, market positioning, and core value proposition became clear. Choosing taglines and other language that is direct, focused on benefits, and avoids being too “clever” makes it easier to adapt your content strategy to different markets.
Distinguish Between Translation and Localization
The mobile games sector is constantly pushing to localize and break into new markets, with the Wall Street Journal estimating that the space will be worth almost $30 billion by 2017. One major game developer had a series of gaffes until it realized that translation was not enough. In fact, the company had to go deeper and adapt the game content for each market’s cultural context. As a marketer, you should look at whether graphics, images, stories, expert sources, and other components resonate with local consumers. Small tweaks can lead to big results when they’re done with the market’s needs in mind.
Consult Local Experts
Translation requires insight into local slang and turns of phrase. For instance, though one airline’s tagline “Fly in leather” worked in many Latin American markets, it translated to “Fly naked” in Mexico. This company’s experience underscores the importance of adapting to regional content strategies for each individual market. Translations should be vetted by both translation and marketing professionals in each target market to screen for these types of language variations. In markets like China, which have significant dialect differences by city or province, it may even be valuable to consult multiple experts for different opinions.
A content marketing strategy is essential for helping your translated content fuel global growth. Developing a strategy that is aware of and plans for the challenges of international communications will increase your chances of product success and help you avoid awkward mistakes. The process starts with an effective translation solution.
Image source: Bigstock