When most people think of content management systems (CMS), they think about content generation and content deployment, not necessarily content transformations. When it comes time to take your company global, will you be prepared? It’s better to plan ahead with a global content management system (GCMS) than to retroactively prepare your content and your workflows once you’re already in full swing. When you engage with an integrated platform, it turns your content management system into a global ecosystem.
When most clients ask for transcreation, what they really need is high-quality translation.
You should expect translated content to be idiomatic, fluid, and nuanced—to sound natural in the target locale. That’s what good translation looks and feels like. Within the context of a content localization management system, high-quality translation is the result of high-quality support technology. Style guides, terminology management procedures, and brand resources all contribute to making translation sound fully local and generate more leads.
Transcreation, on the other hand, is something entirely different—and you shouldn’t have to pay a premium for transcreation when excellent localization will do.
There are two main ways of managing software localization for global business:
→ You can organize your team’s workflow, make outlines of processes, hire language specialists, and create a system that will ensure high-quality, prompt localization for all software updates in all the markets you enter. It will be a herculean task that will occupy your complete attention—not just for a one-off project but for your product’s long life.
→ The alternative is to integrate with a system that is already operating and has been sharpened for maximum efficiency and transparency. Instead of thinking about flowcharts for years and hunting people down to QA your adapted product in various languages, you can take advantage of automated processes and leave the translations and quality management to the localization experts.
Localizing social media content is fairly straightforward. Each blurb, image, and video could easily be fed through a localization platform and translated into any number of languages. The challenge—for both established enterprises and startups that are just beginning to globalize—is to allocate resources efficiently so that social media localization doesn’t absorb all of your time and money.
So, you've got a killer website in English, and you're about ready to launch translated versions in a handful of markets around the world. You invested in a CMS that boasts handy automated solutions for multilingual versioning. But what you may not be anticipating is that the new pages with translated content will not be assigned a searchable URL. This is going to undermine the whole endeavor. It doesn't matter how great your site may be—even in translation. If there isn't a search-engine-optimized (SEO) way for people to find it, they won't. They can’t.
Many organizations reach a point in their development when they are ready to expand internationally but are hesitant to take the plunge. They may have little grasp of how to localize content for foreign markets—no idea where to start. Localization takes great time, money, and effort, and you’re right to proceed cautiously. Expert guidance can be a huge benefit as you become an international business, especially to tackle the intricacies of localization.
A startling number of translation companies advertise automation in their list of services. It’s perhaps the biggest buzzword in our industry right now. Language service providers (LSPs) of all sizes say that they’re applying AI to automate every step in the localization process—but few actually deliver on that promise. Automation is a layered and nuanced process that varies greatly from company to company.
There is a lot of confusion around what an automatic translation tool is and what we can reasonably expect it to accomplish. The most interesting question is not about machine translation engines such as Google Translate; the most interesting question is about what the latest localization tools can automate for the peak return on your investment and streamlining of time and resources.
Finding a good translation vendor is difficult for a number of reasons. For one, the language industry offers a wide array of services that aren’t differentiated very well in the way they’re advertised. Every company claims to provide exactly what you need. Yet, behind the scenes, they differ vastly in operational function, price, and quality. Without some insider knowledge, it’s difficult to determine which services you actually need.
If you’re translating a handful of web pages into a single target language, a basic SLV (single language vendor) might be enough. But if you’re translating software, a mobile app, or extensive elearning content, you’re actually looking for way more than a translation vendor.
Marketing can be a genuinely transformative experience, especially international marketing, as you face new demands and take new approaches to problem solving. Planning marketing strategies for international markets early in your campaign can save you immeasurable time, money, and effort by setting you on a sure course from the very beginning. Read more about these strategies that can help your company to know itself better, to be deliberate with localization, to be infinitely scalable, and to solidify expert support.
Globalization is the inevitable culmination of economic growth. Even though this phenomenon has been in full force for nearly five decades, there is no end in sight. According to data from the KOF globalization index, Switzerland, the Netherlands, and Belgium were the most globalized nations in the world as of December 2018. Meanwhile, the United States measured at #23—meaning there’s compelling room for expansion.
As businesses are becoming more global, content is becoming more digital. The compounding of these two unstoppable trends means that global content is in your company’s future—and in the future of almost every other business. We’re entering the Wild West of global content expansion.