Let’s say you have operations in Mexico City. Now, an opportunity has come up for you to expand into Costa Rica. You may be tempted to assume that translation and localization won’t be a concern. You can simply port your content from one region to the next. After all, aren’t they both Spanish speaking countries?
Not so fast. Translation and localization are more complex than simply translating content from one language to another. These disciplines must take into consideration idioms and slang, cultural traditions, long held values, even differing consumer trends. Opening up operations in a new country, even when the languages are the same means dealing with an entirely new set of values, traditions, and language use. This is also true when opening operations in a new region of a larger country. The following are some questions to consider when moving into a new country or region where there same language is spoken.
What Are The Cultural Differences in The Newly Targeted Location?
In order for your web content, advertising, and marketing efforts to be a success they must be relevant and relatable to your new target personas. To accomplish this, you must identify cultural differences so that you can determine what to curate and how.
Take the example of Mexico and Costa Rica above. There are definitely similarities between the two nations. Both value food and family, religious traditions are important, and community is held in high regard. On the other hand there are differences that could impact the way you may attempt to connect with audiences in Costa Rica. For example, the distinctions between economic classes in Costa Rica are not as strong as they are in Mexico.
What Are Some Language Differences to be Considered?
Just because people in two regions speak the same language, that doesn’t mean there are no language differences. Every place develops their own unique take on their base language. Slang terms, idioms, even commonly used words may be different. For example, in Costa Rica, you rarely hear people use the word ‘tu’ (you). Instead, they prefer the word ‘vos’. Pick Writers can help you to identify translation services that can hammer out these important details as you go through the localization process.
What Are The Interests And Passions That People in The New Location Have?
In order to successfully engage with people in a new area you have to understand what excites them, and what they are passionate about. Here are some things to consider:
- Beloved Foods And Drinks
- Holidays And Celebrations
- Sports Teams
- Historical Events
- Popular Hobbies
- Leisure Time Activities
- Material Items Held in High Regard
- Local Events
- Popular Destinations
It seems a bit trite, but there is a reason why musicians will always mention something about the town they are in during concert performances. It builds a connection with the audience. The same thing applies when marketing to local audiences.
Where is There Potential to Offend?
Even if they speak the same language, there can be cultural and historical differences between nations that could mean that what is acceptable, even revered in one place is offensive and reviled in another. For example, a historical figure may be considered a great and powerful leader in one country. In another that same figure may be seen as an oppressive despot. A successful localization effort will take things like this into consideration.
Translating services don’t exist simply to help you port content from one language to another. They also provide localization services that help you to ensure that your messaging works as well. Don’t let language similarities stop you from using these services.