When do brands need creative translation for businesses?

Last Updated On: September 6, 2023

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Creative Translation for Businesses

An ordinary straightforward translation is a common way for a business to get its message across to an overseas audience. This is however not seen as the best way of attracting new customers but more importantly a business has to be a bit more creative and use transcreation instead. This is provided by a marketing translation service.

What precisely is transcreation?

Transcreation goes one step further than a direct translation as it completely recreates a business’s message in a different language, but using the business’s personalised style, concepts, intent and tone. A business wants to retain what is unique about its brand and the only way to achieve this is through a “creative translation” or “a marketing translation.”

In a direct translation, the translator substitutes words found in one language into words of the second language. This is not necessarily effective for a business if it wants to effectively market its products in a competitive environment. In order to really localise a product the source language is translated into the targeted language with the aim of making it appealing to and fitting in with the cultural preferences and norms of the targeted audience. This could mean that in the end the words used in a targeted text can be quite different from the language found in the source language as the translator tries to use words that most closely resemble the business’s message rather than concentrating on word for word translations.


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    What’s so important about creative translation?

    When introducing a new product a business might have invested in hundreds of hours of work in an effort to develop a specific brand identity with its unique voice. This is in order to capture a new audience. Once this desire to attract new customers becomes more intense it’s important to take into consideration the culture of the speaker of the new language.

    There are all sorts of subtle differences between cultures which include their view of colours and images. If a business translation doesn’t take these aspects into consideration the new product may be isolated as no one will be able to relate to it in their own context.

    There are a number of language structures that need to be considered if a business sees the need and importance of translation and wants it to be effective.

    1. Idioms

    A well-positioned and popular idiomatic construction which has been appropriately tweaked to match a new product makes a highly effective foundation for a new marketing slogan. The only problem that needs to be overcome is whether this new slogan can be translated well enough to be effective for a new audience. It will need a marketing translation service to help ensure this takes place.

    2. Metaphors

    These are constructions that compare one thing with another which may not be the literal meaning of the words. This makes translations very challenging and if directly translated may not be well accepted by a new audience. In order to undertake a reliable translation the human translator through experience will do his or her best to find just the right translation.

    3. Cultural influence on language

    Symbols and colours mean different things to different cultures and some cultures take these more seriously than others. Businesses may use certain colours and symbols on their brands which they market to their local customers but these might not be appropriate when dealing with an overseas audience. These sorts of things have to be thoroughly researched before a localisation campaign begins. Transcreation is the name given for this type of adaptation of language and symbols when marketing your product to new markets.

    Because of the importance of transcreation it’s necessary for a business to try to create a fully unified campaign that’s adapted to each new market and region. It might not be possible to go the full way due to cost and time constraints, but at least it is important not to get the symbolism wrong. This would inevitably send the wrong message to any customers you are trying to attract. If you get most of this right and you hire an efficient and proficient translator to do your translation work you will be a long way to transcreate your brand with an appropriate marketing message which will attract new customers and grow revenue for your business at a faster rate than you could ever imagine.


    The way a business markets a product today is far more complex than it’s ever been before. The arrival of the internet means that competition is far greater and businesses if they produce the right marketing message can attract business from customers who will normally buy local. This means not only does the local business have to create a more aggressive marketing campaign to keep its current customers but in order to grow it has to go further afield. This means translating its marketing message into the languages of its potential customers while ensuring it emphasizes the need and importance of translation, which involves far more than word for word translations but brings transcreation into the picture. This is preparing the marketing message that is culturally appropriate for any new market.

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