Brand Translation Fails
Taking your business across the border is exciting. It can increase the revenue base, diversified portfolio, and brand awareness. Marketing your products in an international marketplace requires comprehensive research, planning and brand translation. To succeed in a new market, you must devise a strategy to appeal to your customer base.
Language and cultural barriers always exist when you expand your business into the overseas market. Therefore, you also need to do brand translation in the local language to engage the customers.
Many companies believe that it is just a translation of words due to which their marketing strategy fails to capture the customer base. The article discusses this issue thoroughly by examining key points necessary for brand awareness and avoiding translation mistakes.
What is Brand Translation?
Brand translation is a method to transform your product portfolio from one language to another by keeping the brand’s original content. This process is considered when a company expands its business from the local to the international market.
The crucial thing that matters in the translation process is understanding the brand’s meaning. You need to ensure whether it portrays a similar concept in another language to avoid making translation mistakes. For example, the word “Mist” in English means humidity, while in German, it means manure.
Companies make a mistake while translating their brand names as they cannot understand other marketplaces’ language and cultural factors. Therefore, it is essential to do thorough research before changing your brand name.
If you have a brand name that implies a similar concept in all languages, there is no need to alter it. This scenario is known as a literal translation process.
How You Can Achieve Brand Translation
Translating your product portfolio and brand names into something favourable and in-line with the global marketplace is essential. You can hire a translation agency to alter your brand name if it has a different concept in another language. A translation agency provides its expertise in creative translation by modifying the brand names, product portfolio, and overall corporate image.
The brand translation should positively impact your company in a global market. It allows you to easily engage your audience and understand their needs. You can also achieve the brand amelioration process internally through your marketing team.
In the translation process, the marketing team should do a comprehensive research analysis of the market and prepare a report to present a clear picture of the brand alteration. The brand name must deliver a cultural factor if the customers pay attention to cultural values when buying a new product. This cultural factor in brand translation should encourage the audience to buy the company’s products.
Businesses should keep analysing the changing trends in the market. If the customers prefer original brand names that portray the company’s image, then there is no need to change them. In this case, you can also do a creative translation of your brand that provides similar meaning but in a creative way.
Similarly, if the customers are interested in product names written in their languages, you should advise your marketing team to work on the translation process. You should also adopt a literal translation process to achieve this kind of scenario.
Why do Companies fail in Brand Translation?
Brand translation is not just translating your brand or product’s names into another language. Most companies failed to comprehend the phenomena and factors behind this process. You must follow four crucial principles of the translation process, or chances of the poor brand’s image will be inevitable.
When expanding to other marketplaces, businesses do not consider the basic principles and techniques behind the translation process. As a result, they badly failed to capture the customers’ attention.
If your company does not want to be involved in the research process, then a translation agency can be perfect. A translation agency provides expertise in both research and planning applications to comprehend customers’ interests and needs related to the brand name.
Four Principles of Creative Translation
The first principle implies that all brand names should advise the customers to buy the company’s products through an introduction in their languages. In this case, you can follow both creative and literal translation methods to convey your product message.
The second principle focuses on the product’s sales through brand translation. The amelioration process has no value if the company does not imply product sales in its brand name. It is a common problem for a company’s failure to change the brand name into another language without focusing on the sales of products.
The third principle implies that a brand name always keeps the original aesthetic value. This principle is based on creative translation, which means creativity in the brand names. A successful brand name should always turn its readers into a realistic realm that increases their interests. Therefore, you should consider an artistic factor too when doing creative translation of your brand name into a new language.
The fourth principle says that a brand name should be according to customers’ cultural beliefs, buying behaviour, psychological factors, and local traditions. It is the most important principle for changing the brand name, which must be considered for the business expansion process.
Examples of Translation Mistakes
If the companies do not consider the first principle above, there will be adverse consequences. For example, KFC China launched the favourite product slogan “Finger Licking Good” into a cannibalistic message, negatively impacting their sales.
Product sales should always have a significant role in your brand name when expanding to an international market. For example, in the 1970s, American Motor was also among manufacturers that made translation mistakes. American Motor changed its mid-size car name into the Spanish word “the Matador.” It later turned out matador meant killer in the Spanish language. This translation disaster hurt the company’s sales in the Spanish market.
Other examples of translation mistakes include American car manufacturing giant Ford when they launched their product slogan into the Belgium market. The company wanted to present that “Every car has a high-quality body”, but it translated that “Every car has a high-quality corpse”.
Brand translation is crucial when a company expands its business into an internal market. The article highlighted the key factors involved in the process. It has also mentioned key principles that should be considered before changing the brand or product name.
Renaissance Translations’ Creative Branding Translation
Creative branding translation is also called transcreation where a highly creative translator works on content translation. If you would like to discuss your creative translation needs, please contact our project managers today.