In times of crisis like the one we’re living now on a global scale due to the COVID-19 emergency, translation can help you reach your audience by mitigating the gap created by social distancing.
Now more than ever, our communication should aim to be:
> 100% understood
> Clear, free from legalese and officialese
> Meditated (yes, even more so in times of emergence)
Communicating in more than one language, which, if your audience is spread across multiple markets, is always a good idea, adds complexity to your strategy.
So, if you would like for your contents to have the same effect in all the languages you use, bear in mind these key points:
> First, get your original content right, before translating it, under all aspects, including the legal ones: going back and forth in many different languages takes much more time than doing it in just one, as it involves lots of people among client, copywriters, translators, revisers, and different corporate teams and agencies in-between; it also avoids exposing you to multiple mistakes in the process.
> Pay attention to the tone of voice, i.e. that it is exactly replicated in all your languages of interest: it would be weird to sound empathic in one language and cold and detached in another.
> Translating all your safety and emergency messages first: in an emergency, people tend to panic and reading something vital or important for their life or work in another language is a no go.
> Translating sales & marketing contents which can help your customers make the right choice or facilitate their lives in this time of crisis.
> The opportunity of reskilling or upskilling your workers and stakeholders, getting them access to e-learning platforms and training in their own language.
> And maybe also getting your content strategy back on track, or getting one if you don’t. Make it consistent, take out obsolete contents, update the existing ones to the current situation, learn and widen your horizons through partnerships and explore available media, communication and (e-)learning tools, such as podcasts, video contents or gamification.
Purpose and goals are often words which get thrown around without much of a hook to action or reality. But suddenly, like so much else in our lives, they’ve become critical. Like thinking twice before hitting Send even in our own personal daily use of social media.
Just being aware of it is already a great step forward.
Let me know your thoughts on this and stay safe!