Enterprise translation: a checklist for going global

By Acclaro
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Enterprise translation: a checklist for going global

Growing your global presence means connecting with your global market. And it can’t be left to chance: the more you prepare upfront, the better positioned your brand will be to scale efficiently. Here’s a checklist of how you can set yourself up for success when you need enterprise translations and localization across the entire company.

1. Prepare a cross-cultural marketing strategy

As you get ready to launch in new markets, you’ll save time and money if you incorporate translation and localization into your global marketing strategy. To get started, read our top tips for honing a cross-cultural marketing strategy.

Once you’re ready to translate, keep in mind that marketing translations usually require a special translation approach. Unlike a word-for-word translation, a transcreation or creative translation approach allows the linguist to fully adapt marketing assets. Talented linguists and copywriters will make sure that your core message, images and metaphors appeal to your target market, even if the exact phrasing or imagery is different from the original campaign. This way, you can ensure that your message resonates with your target market.

The first marketing assets that you’ll want to translate or transcreate are your general assets, like slogans, mission statements and product names. You’ll also need to translate your website content, including downloadable content like eBooks and white papers. Your target market needs to be able to easily navigate, understand and act on what they see and read.

An expert partner will help craft a custom localization strategy for your marketing campaigns and assets. With the right team, you’ll build a seamless process that helps to keep costs within budget, meet deadlines and scale. You’ll also get expert advice on putting together a translation glossary and style guide which, along with tools like translation memory, keep your branding consistent across all of your markets.

2. Adopt the right approach for sales assets

Marketing and sales teams usually work closely to bring contacts down the funnel from qualified leads to new clients. As you launch in a new market, it’s key to keep branding and messaging consistent across both departments.

Your sales assets should open doors for you to build authentic relationships with your local clients. To be effective, some sales assets may lend themselves to direct translation. Others may require more creative transcreation. Your translation partner will help you identify the right approach in light of your time, budget and quality needs.

3. Consider Product Translations Early-On

In order to sell your products in a new market, you will also have to consider making sure that your product appeals to potential clients. Depending on what type of product you offer, you may need to translate the product itself, only the packaging and labeling, or both.

Unclear translations can undo your efforts to launch and market your products. Your translation partner should bring native-level knowledge of your target market, so that you choose language and imagery that resonates. To learn more, read our best practices for product translation.

4. Make sure your corporate documents comply with local laws and regulations

Moving into a new market will also require significant administrative and legal translations. These include documents like:

  • Leases
  • Trademark application and registration documents
  • Intellectual property issues like noncompetition and trade secret agreements
  • Site surveys
  • Technical reports
  • Local administrative and government paperwork

It’s important to start these translations early-on so that they can be reviewed and approved by management well in advance of your launch date. It’s important for language to be very precise, as there is usually no room for miscommunication, or worse, mistakes that have negative legal or financial consequences on your business.

We usually recommend a direct translation approach rather than transcreation to ensure absolute accuracy for your documents. Linguists with subject matter expertise and, when appropriate, legal training, will make sure your documents comply with local laws and regulations.

5. Get your team up and running with training and elearning content

Many businesses expand globally by establishing new operations centers and distribution and field sales centers. Training and managing new, local employees requires careful translation of documents as well as a deep understanding of local systems and customs.

This means that you’ll need to translate human resources (HR) documents, agreements, onboarding handbooks, eLearning content and multimedia resources. Getting local workers paid will also require translating financial documents related to payroll, administrative regulations, tax payment withholding and more. Workplace health and safety documents, operational instructions, Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS), and other employee notices need to also be in all local languages.

Your translation team should understand your industry, local business regulations and requirements.

6. Support your customers in their preferred language

Once you’ve set up your company for business in a new market, prepare to support your new customers effectively through each stage of the buyer journey, from researching your product to placing an order. Online materials and mobile apps should reliably provide the information your customers may need and your customer service team should be able to communicate with them in person, in writing, or over the phone. You can either hire interpreters or simply build a local team.

Other customer support materials for product usage, training, and operations can be made available through your website, including videos, product manuals, and written answers to frequently asked questions. Ensuring that you provide your new customers with a variety of options to contact you will help you build brand loyalty, recognition, and credibility in your new market.

Enterprise translation & localization that positions your global efforts to scale

While challenging, the opportunity to go global has the potential for massive expansion and growth. With the right multinational localization and translation strategies, you’ll be reaching new customers in no time! Acclaro’s team specializes in expertly adapting brands, products, and services to new language markets. If you are looking for your brand to succeed across cultures, please contact us to find out how our team of seasoned experts can help.

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