“Translation is not a matter of words only; it is a matter of making a whole culture intelligible” – Anthony Burgess

Is Translation a Big Deal?

Translation is not a literal word-to-word project; it is so much more than that. Businesses are now realizing the value of taking their marketing and sales activities to a whole new level by offering their products in their target market’s language. New international markets come with great opportunity, as well as challenges of language and cultural barriers that need to be broken down. An ideal marketing campaign translation is one that not only focuses on the translation of the words themselves, but that also ensures that the message is communicated correctly and in a culturally accepted way for the target audience.

When a company goes global, one of the most challenging issues that it needs to over come is the communication barrier. The marketing content needs to be translated from the source language into the target language for the local audience in order to ensure the understanding necessary for the product or service to gain mass appeal. Deploying an effective translation strategy is a critical step for companies to gain a competitive edge in foreign markets.

History has shown a number of marketing campaigns fail miserably due to poor translation. When a translation fails to match cultural context and integrate effectively with the target demographic, it can not only create a failure for the product but irreparably damage the brand in the eyes of the local market.


Lost in Translation

Here are just a few marketing fails that could have been avoided by accurate translation services:

  • While advertising in China, KFC attempted to translate its slogan “Finger Lickin’ Good” into Chinese. The final product became the zombie apocalypse friendly “Eat your fingers off”.
  • When Pepsi planned to enter the Chinese market, the company decided to go on with its English language marketing slogan “Pepsi gives you zest for life”. The translated version, “Pepsi brings your ancestors back from the grave” wasn’t exactly a hit with the locals.
  • Parker Pens’ famous tagline “It won’t leak in your pockets and embarrass you” didn’t have a smooth translation in Spanish for their Mexican markets. Locals were greeted with Parker Pens: “It won’t leak in your pocket and make you pregnant”. Good to know, although not exactly the selling point they were hoping for.

Whenever you plan to compete on a global platform and market your products internationally, take the necessary steps to ensure your marketing campaign is translated and localized with the utmost care and attention to detail.

Need Skilled Translators for your Marketing Campaign?

Niki’s Int’l Ltd. is an international interpretation, translation, and translation agency with nearly 20 years of experience across various industries worldwide. Our purpose is to provide clear and concise communication between you and your clients within any medium. Our courteous and professional staff is available 24/7 to help your business.

Visit today! Or call us at 1-877-567-8449 to speak with a specialist today.

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