How to impress your foreign customers

Published 8th December 2011
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How to impress your foreign customers

Translation may be the last thing you think of when thinking about doing business abroad. However, it is one of the most important factors in your bid to attract foreign customers. It goes without saying that choosing professional website translation services is of the utmost importance. There are also other things that you need to take into account when preparing to trade with other countries.

Many people don’t realise that it is not just the actual words in a text that need to be translated. Each language belongs to a unique culture. As such, your text will need to cater to the preferences and values of the new target audience. It is widely recognised that when writing an advertisement, you must remember that you are not necessarily the target audience. This principle is never more important than when writing for your new target market. For example, a pun or joke in your text may not be funny in the target language. It may not make sense at all!

A professional translation company will alert you to any potential issues in your text, and may be able to suggest suitable alternatives. Whether that be finding an equivalent expression in the target language, or removing anything which may be deemed inappropriate by the new target audience. This process, which includes the translation of any cultural references, is commonly known as localisation.

Here are some tips which may help when preparing a text for localisation.

Most importantly: do your market research. Just as you would when writing a text targeted at your own country.

Second, try to avoid any metaphors, idioms or jokes which may risk causing offence or confusion, or any ambiguous phrases.

Above all, it’s important to get to know your new clients, just as you would have when you started trading. Of course, if you have any questions, your professional translation company will be able to advise you.

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