Translating Advertising Content  

November 2, 2022

Are your advertising departments and marketing teams up to date on the latest trends in advertising? Do you collaborate with your teams to create quality content? How do you know if your target audiences view your advertising in the most professional light? These are just a few questions to consider when planning content for any audience. It gets even more complex for global companies and those seeking to reach new geographic or cultural target markets. 

Targeting audiences with different cultural backgrounds and languages not only provides an opportunity to bring your goods and services to a new group of people, but also demonstrates a dedication to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I). Let’s explore ways you can translate your advertising content and reach global audiences.  

What is Advertising Translation? 

Advertising translation is the process of translating your advertising content into a specific language (or languages) to reach a target audience outside your company’s native language. For example, if you have advertising content created for U.S. markets in English but are now targeting a population in Brazil, you need to translate your content into Portuguese.  

The translation process is much more complicated and involved than you may think. The first step is considering what types of advertisements to translate for global reach.  

  • Video – closed captioning, subtitles, voice-overs, etc. Translate audio and visual aspects of a video advertisement for accuracy and cultural nuances. 
  • Print – translate any distributed physical, printed material into your target languages. Why waste time and money printing material if people are not understanding your advertising message?  
  • Digital – anything posted to social media platforms, a website, an app, etc., should be translated.  

The Importance of Using a Professional Translation Service 

Aside from reaching your desired audience with material they can understand, translating advertising content with the help of a professional language translation agency is a critical factor in the success of your advertising and marketing efforts. Translating involves technical and linguistic expertise to get the job done right the first time. Once the original content is ready for both press and translation, an expert will translate the content while keeping your brand voice, tone, and message the same.

Additionally, in some languages, translation will reduce or add words or characters to keep the same meaning, while in others, some of your native words won’t even exist. This character fluctuation often impacts the layout of your graphics. A professional agency has a team of designers to assist with the layout and design of your newly translated content to match your original designed graphic.  

Wanting to get the work done in-house? Consider how long it took your team to create the original content piece. Attempting translation in-house may take double that time to translate it into an additional language on top of redesigning the layout. It is imperative you translate your advertising content efficiently and accurately the first time to not miss important deadlines, reduce speed to market, or lose credibility with your target language populations.  

Challenges of Advertising Translation 

Regardless of the original content’s language, challenges will still exist when translating it for any marketing or advertising campaign. Here are just a few challenges and considerations you want to think about before getting started with translating your advertising content for a specific audience: 

  • Getting the cultural nuances correct. What may seem respectful or funny in one culture could be rude or offensive in another. 
  • Avoiding “offensive content,” whether symbols, imagery, or text. Symbols could be very similar across cultures, but one mistake could cost you the entire campaign and audience.  
  • Check your idioms at the door. For example, people in other cultures may not understand what you mean when you say things like “the ball’s in your court.” 
  • Not accounting for different dialects. Don’t generalize languages across countries or groups. Different regions of the same country could speak different dialects of the same language with very different meanings! 
  • Using localization  to encompass social cues, politics, demographics, history, and more. Translate your content with this cultural context in mind if you target an audience in a specific region.  

Investing in quality translation services for global marketing and advertising will help your company avoid these challenges. They take the same care and thoughtful consideration as you do with your original content pieces. Your translation services partner wants to see you achieve brand recognition and gain consumer loyalty from your target audiences.  

Best Practices for Translating Ads 

Translating advertisements is a great way to expand your global reach. Here are some best practices for translating advertisements to create successful campaigns:  

  • Decide on your target geographic and cultural locations to identify what languages are used. 
  • Understanding the translation process can be complicated and may involve a lot of research.  
  • Know your timeline — from content development to publishing — and build in added time for translations.  
  • Consider both cultural and linguistic contexts for international and regional audiences. 
  • Gather all marketing materials and content you would like to have translated as part of the campaign (social media, press releases, etc.). 
  • Rely on a professional translation service for accurate, culturally relevant, and brand-reflective translations. 

The INGCO Way – Quality, Efficient Translations for Advertising  

INGCO International is a leading expert in global marketing translation services. We specialize in multiple facets of these services – from translation and localization to layout, design, and more, so you can rest easy that your project is in great hands.  

Our goal is to build and keep your trust. Discover the INGCO Way and start connecting with new audiences around the world.  Contact us now to learn more and get started!