“The pen is mightier than the sword!”
Edward Bulwer-Lytton coined this phrase in the late 1830s in order to show that communication is more effective than violence. Now, while the meaning remains the same, in today’s world it also applies to the field of marketing, where words have power over aggressiveness and badgering.
Marketers learn early in their career that communication is crucial in the relationship with customers. However, experienced marketers also know that effective communication, is highly dependent on the words you use.
In fact, a successful marketing campaign in one language can be a total failure in another just because the translation didn’t make use of the right words!
Words that Attract Visitors
The main purpose of a campaign (be it online or offline) is to attract high-quality leads that will turn into buying customers. Of course, there are lots of campaigns out there that, even though they start a buzz and people look interested, they don’t manage to produce enough leads.
As it turns out, the problem stands in the words used to describe the campaign.
While choosing the right words for the audience is a marketing and copywrite issue, translators bear the responsibility of transposing the message in other languages. Here is where it becomes our job to choose the words that matter!
For instance, if we were to translate a site in English, we would use words that drive people through the sales funnel, such as:
- You – when you address the reader directly, you pique their interest and make them part of the campaign;
- Imagine – this is a word that asks the reader to use their imagination (the world’s most powerful graphics card);
- Because – this is a powerhouse because it gives people a reason to do something;
- Breakthrough – people love to hear about breakthrough discoveries, technologies, and more;
- Exciting – wouldn’t you buy something that makes you feel excited about life?
- Special – we all strive to be and feel special, and purchasing something that makes us feel this way, even for a short while, is definitely worth it!
- Guarantee – your buyers want to be reassured that they are making the right purchase.
The list goes on and on (more words that sell, here), but the point we’re trying to make is that words matter.
Making a Convincing Translation
Now, our job as translators is to understand the initial message and transpose it into a different language with the same power of impact.
This is not an easy job and should only be handled by specialists who recognize, know, and respect the power of words!
After all, translating marketing messages and online content is a job that resembles the translation of literary works. You need to know which words inspire people the best and use them wisely to recreate the context of the original text. Sometimes, the correspondent words in a different language don’t convey the same power as the original message, which is why the translator must make a choice in following the message word-by-word or its power.
It’s a struggle understood only by people who work in the field of communication, which is why it requires experience, creativity, and a willingness to commit to the cause.
Now that we offered a peek behind the curtain of translating marketing materials, imagine your ideal collaborators. Would you rather save money and risk losing an entire campaign or would you work with a professional team who can deliver the best quality?