Do you need translation or transcreation?

In the translation industry, there is a consensus that translators should only work in their mother tongue, no matter how fluent they are in any other language, thus ensuring the linguistic nuances in their native language are kept.

Many linguists have different qualifications, whether it is engineering, law, economic or marketing sectors etc. This allows them to fully understand the texts even in highly specialized domains and to be good translators. Some translators are more creative, and can thus approach more projects in domains like marketing, media and advertising.

For some certain texts, something more than translation is necessary – transcreation. To transcreate means to take a concept presented in a language and completely adapt and recreate it in another language, while observing the linguistic nuances and cultural particularities of the target audience.

Transcreation is usually required when dealing with marketing documents, for translating ideas, products or services specifications destined for international audiences. A good marketing copy should grab the audience’s attention and convince it to buy. Most clients will want to keep the original feel of their source text, and to get the same reaction from the target audience.

While a translation must be accurate and faithful to the source text, transcreation needs creativity and originality. Unlike translation, where one single translator is used along with a reviewer, transcreation requires whole teams to work on a message, along with the client, in order to ensure that the original message is preserved.

Fluency in a foreign language, correct grammar and in-depth knowledge of the target language are crucial for translation activities, but definitely not sufficient for transcreation. To transcreate you need fantastic linguistic dexterity and an ability to grasp complex concepts.

Want to find out if translation or transcreation is more appropriate for your needs? Give us a call –  we are experts in localization of marketing, advertising and media content, and we can help you understand which will fit your needs better.

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