By Marcela Arbelaez Arango,
Ambitious brands transform the way their content is created and consumed around the world. Most countries have been developing a very ambitious export plan to compete globally and be part of the movers and shakers at international level. As an entrepreneur big or small, it is also important to keep in mind that as the global market grows, every business should take advantage of the changing landscape, otherwise it could be left behind by competitors and competing markets. The main global players are closing important partnerships in global trade. As an example the latest Trade Agreement pending approval: The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).
For companies focused on import or export, it is important to have foreign language speakers on staff – but the leadership at these firms needs to understand the limitations of using bilingual employees in place of experienced translators when it comes to written business presentations in a foreign language. The cost, both real and transactional, of poor foreign language skills to global businesses is probably incalculable. Missing cultural and linguistic nuances can be detrimental for any company from communications to its own workers to communications with clients and the marketplace. A global marketing strategy where leadership fails to consider the impact of language barriers as an important challenge in its export plan is in my opinion the biggest cause of a failure to penetrate foreign markets, not only from a sale perspective but also from the perspective of legal and compliance issues, as well as intellectual property issues.
Any company planning to export or import, and any investor in a company involved in outward direct investment, can optimize success by hiring a professional translation agency with a knack for “trans-creation” of multi-cultural and multi-lingual marketing ideas.
Four aspects of language management are linked with import and export success: developing a comprehensive language strategy; appointing native speakers to management level positions; recruiting non-managerial employees with multi-language skills; and enjoying a partnership with professional international marketing consultants who provide services like professional translation, advanced localization tools and marketing/PR services.
There is no doubt that customers respond better to sales and marketing communications in their mother-tongue – and also, at times, in their own particular regional dialect. Translating all marketing materials, content marketing, and most importantly, digital platforms such as social media, blogs and websites, will yield better results for sales, website traffic and brand-awareness and even help maintain higher customer retention.
Your translation strategy is your growth strategy.
The truth is that developing a global fluency platform offers you limitless opportunities to grow. We help ambitious brands increase reach and revenue by expanding their marketing into new foreign language markets.
Marcela Arbelaez is CEO and Managing Partner of Lingua Franca Legal Solutions and Lingua Franca Translations (LF Translations). Ms. Arbeláez is voting member of ATA, member of South Florida District Export Council and Co-Chair of the Consular and Trade Committee at the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce.