How To Translate Video Content For Your Global Market: 3 Great Tips

How To Translate Video Content For Your Global Market: 3 Great Tips

Video marketing has exploded in the past few years and if you’re already using video in your online marketing efforts you know why. According to bubobox, video has an impact that far outweighs print. To begin with, 60% of your target audience prefers video to text and when you embed it in your website, video has the power to decrease bounce rates, dramatically increase time on page and increase conversion by 30%. When you include it in an email, it nearly doubles click-through rates. And when you put it up on your YouTube channel, it has the potential to go viral and get seen by the nearly one billion unique global visitors who flock to YouTube every month. It’s undeniable. There’s a certain magnetism to video that keeps your prospect’s attention longer and creates a buzz that’s hard to inspire through text alone.

So why limit its impact just to English speakers? Take the extra step and make all that valuable video content suitable for global markets. After all, if your brand is global your video needs to be global too. You spent a lot of time and resources creating the perfect video. Why would you want to limit its success?

Tips and Best Practices For Translating Video Content

Of course, making your video content accessible to a global audience isn’t quite as simple as flipping a switch. But it’s probably not nearly as expensive or time-consuming as you imagine. The following best practices outline how you can plan for and create globally accessible video content to maximize the impact of this new frontier of content marketing.

#1. Plan Ahead For Globalization

When it comes to globalizing video content, a little proactive planning will go a long way toward giving you an optimum result. Starting the video planning process with globalization in mind pays off in multiple ways:

• You get better results, faster and at lower cost
• Translating the content for additional markets is also easier, faster and cheaper
• Content updates are much more efficient

So, before you start calling talent agencies, take a few steps back and integrate globalization into your process from the beginning. Content that is “global ready” is culturally neutral. For spoken content, that means ensuring that writing is simple and straightforward, eliminating culturally-specific reference and avoiding jargon, jokes, colloquialisms and anything that might confuse a translator or non-English speaker. For video elements, that means avoiding culturally sensitive or country-specific images. For musical elements, that might mean selecting a soundtrack that does not have lyrics.

#2: Choose The Right Translation Type

Before you actually start filming, you will want to decide what translation type you will use. This is important, because letting the production team know you plan to globalize will allow them to use globalization-friendly production methods that simplify adding subtitles, synching audio to on-screen text and maintaining the consistency of spoken to on-screen text. This will ultimately streamline the translation process and lower costs.

Options for translation services are many, from simply translating the spoken content and adding subtitles to the finished product to varying levels of voice-overs, dubbing and/or lip syncing. Which one makes sense for your project will depend on a variety of factors from your budget to the level of visibility your finished product will have with international audiences.

Don't Forget About Your Existing Video Content!

As a savvy marketer, chances are good that you already have a lot of high-performing video content that you’d like to translate into your target languages right away. While planning ahead for globalization before producing video content is a best practice, you can still take advantage of these options to translate your existing content. Just make sure you work with a company that has experience translating existing content so they can help you avoid common pitfalls and deliver a globalized video that meets your quality and budgetary requirements.

#3. Choose Your Provider Based On Quality, Services Offered And Budget

There’s a wide range of service providers available to translate your video content. And quality can vary as widely as the pricing. When selecting a provider, keep in mind that cheaper doesn’t always equate to lower quality.

While many providers still use traditional, time-consuming and costly methods of translation, advances in technology combined with the development of professionally-managed, high-quality crowdsourced translation services have enabled faster turnaround times and lower costs. So if you can find a technically savvy, high volume translation provider, you may find that you can get higher quality results, faster and at a lower price. Finding a service provider who offers end-to-end multi-media localization services that include project setup, translation, component localization and multilingual voiceovers along with QA and testing will go a long way toward streamlining the process and reducing your stress as well.

Conclusion: Better, Faster Or Cheaper? Choose All Three!

Multimedia content is designed to make an impact. But when you start targeting a global audience, you need to be sure that impact is a good one – with content that’s relevant to each market and that maintains your brand image.

When you’re communicating to the world, time is of the essence, quality is non-negotiable and cost is always a consideration. Planning ahead for globalization, selecting the right translation type, and partnering with a full-service translation provider with advanced globalization resources will help ensure your video content can make a lasting impact the world over.

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Posted in Video Marketing
About Our Contributing Author - Emily Benson
Emily Benson is a digital marketing specialist for Lionbridge. She currently works out of Yokohama, Japan.



Please Note: Opinions expressed in this article are those of the contributing author and not necessarily that of

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What do you think? ▼
  • fruitysudz

    Great article, Emily. Captioning video isn't very hard and once you have it captioned in your own language, you can send your transcript out to have it translated into other languages. I use MovieCaptioner, which makes it very easy to create captions for YouTube (and others), then send the SRT file MovieCaptioner creates out to have it translated into other languages. It makes your video content searchable and can greatly improve SEO.