Translation Isn't Blind: We translate because...

Conventional wisdom tells us that translation expands reach; and reach drives revenue. During this episode, we cover how to reframe how you talk about translation internally through untold stories about why other businesses translate.


Translation Isn't Blind: We translate because... from Smartling on Vimeo.

Can’t commit? Jump to the hot topics in a jiffy:

  • [2:16] - The LOC Show debut and overview
  • [4:33] - Appcues + Smartling webinar
  • [5:42] - How to optimize resources: Smartling + Figma
  • [6:00] - Free comedy show: Smartling + NY’s Comedy Cellar
  • [9:12] - What excites Adrian about translation
  • [9:58] - Communicating translation value to management teaser
  • [11:55] - Overview of why businesses should translate
  • [16:44] - Kate’s overview of the reasons why companies are translating
  • [23:43] - The conventional reasons why businesses use translation services
  • [27:40] Linking value to translation
  • [45:59] - Kate on efficiencies to build in additional languages when going to market
  • [49:05] - Localization Maturity Model baseline for growth in localization projects
  • [52:55] - Teaser for our 6/30 season finale “How to Convince My Manager”

Q: Why do we translate?

A: How much time do you have?

This week’s Translation Isn’t Blind episode wades through both the conventional and the not-so-conventional rationale behind companies implementing translation and localization services.

Do we want to scream our mission from the rooftops and maximize and reach potential customers? A resounding yes.Translation and localization are key to expanding your brand into additional locales.

Why do we translate?

Two quick answers as we lay the foundation to answer this gigantic question:

1. Not all consumers speak English

If you want to operate as a global company, widen your pool of potential end users by weaving inclusive language into your outreach. We have been brainwashed to think every region speaks English, and that just isn’t the case!

Increase your relevance with meaningful messaging in your customer’s native language.

2. An ever changing world

It’s not news that COVID has touched every industry and subsequently required businesses to pivot their offerings to the digital space in the last few months.

Lockdown has been hard on brick and mortar businesses like retailers and service providers. What was once a customer-facing exchange has morphed into digital-only transactions in order to access customers (usually via mobile). While this has been a challenge, COVID has also been an opportunity to get creative with content.

A major component to success is the ability to share our offerings and be heard. Localization is a useful tool for companies to do just that.

The conventional reasons we translate

These should all sound familiar and strike a chord with your existing strategy!

Maximize market expansion

Smartling has worked alongside companies like Eurail and Hootsuite to explore international opportunities to reach as many potential customers as possible.

Scale your content with your brand

Is growth just in your brand's DNA? Is your product always evolving, and you're always looking for new ways to attract new users? Translation is your key to reaching a new audience, and a necessary element of global growth.

Increase your brand's presence

Who doesn’t want additional eyeballs on their goods and services? By localizing content and improving your multilingual SEO will boost your visibility and pump up your site’s traffic.

Improve your customer’s experience

Customers are searching for an authentic experience. They want to be heard, and what better way to that than by speaking their language? Provide a native, authentic and frictionless experience by localizing your

Get ahead of the competition

There's a huge benefit to being a first-mover. Entering a new market with a new solution, tailored to that region, before any competition even arrives will give your brand a huge head start.

“Information in the wrong language is useless.”

The unconventional reasons we translation

And now, for those more nuanced cases where translation is either an advantage, or even a necessity.

Cover your legal and regulatory bases

It may seem like a niche consideration, but bringing legal translation into your workflow can help prevent potential missteps (read: legal contracts) while meeting monumental goals. Smartling helped Butterfly Network expand its product into 13 markets in six months!

Contribute to global literacy

Smartling’s work with Translators without Borders, a nonprofit dedicated to raising awareness of language barriers and providing access to vital information in an audience’s native language, was eye-opening.

Companies who want to make significant strides to eradicate language barriers can do their part by translating and localizing content to empower all of the world’s citizens.

Democratize the economy and empower people

Being able to help allow for people to experience things they typically would not be able to (typically cost-conscious) is a way to share your business’ value while providing attainable services to everyone.

Translation Isn't Blind

We're bringing translation into focus during our new mini webinar series, Translation Isn't Blind. Conventional wisdom tells us that translation expands reach; and reach drives revenue. During this episode, we cover how to reframe how you talk about translation internally through untold stories about why other businesses translate.

Translation Isn't Blind has more in store! Check out our previous and upcoming episodes below. 👇

S1 E1: Navigating Global Crises

During the season premiere episode, Kate Fitzgerald and Adrian Cohn covered the tools and resources you need to respond to crises and evolving situations as the world responds to COVID-19. View the recording here.

S1 E2: Internal Review: Kill it or optimize?

We covered the in's and out's of internally reviewing translation: an “insurance policy” that is designed to minimize a company’s exposure to publishing low quality - or unacceptable - translations. So, what should you do: kill it, or optimize internal review? Yes, you can - you can do one, or the other, or a little bit of both. View the recording here.

S1 E3: Does quality even matter anymore?

It’s the provocative question we’ve been waiting to discuss in the translation space. Some say translation quality is paramount, while others may say speed is more important. Learn how you can do both during this episode of Translation Isn't Blind. View the recording here.

S1 E4: Your perspective matters.

Every business takes a different approach to manage translation quality. During this episode of Translation Isn't Blind, our attendees shared their translation quality success stories. We discussed the themes behind each success and learning moment. View the recording here.

S1 E6: Help me convince my manager

“Translation” lives in different places from one company to the next. Sometimes it’s managed by localization teams, and other times it’s managed by the product team. No matter how your organization decides who owns translation, it’s important that you reveal to your manager how and why translation adds value to the business - how translation isn’t blind. Register here.