If you conduct business in the international market, communication with your foreign clients in their…
Do you require translation services? What are some of the signs? Most companies only realize that translation services are required when the problem becomes acute and customers are being turned away.
It may be better to get the translation services you require late rather than never. But wouldn’t it be a good idea to get them before the problem has had a chance to develop? What if you were able to pinpoint that translation services were required in advance? This would ensure that your company continued to function as a well-oiled machine without any hitches.
And if you think that it’s not possible to know such a thing in advance, then think again. You just need to keep an eye on the development of your company by asking yourself certain questions. This will enable you to know whether translation services are required before the problem becomes acute.
Where Are You Selling Your Product Now?
Most businesses start out selling their product locally, through word of mouth. In this case, you need to look at the geographic region where most of your clients come from. If your geographic region is mostly English-speaking, you shouldn’t have a problem. But there are certain regions that have an abundant minority population. And the main language spoken by that minority may not be English.
You can start by just looking up your geographic region on the internet and getting the stats. If you find that many of the people in your geographic region belong to a certain minority which speaks a different language, you might want to get your material translated into that language as a precautionary measure.
One of your English-speaking clients might recommend you to a Chinese-speaking client who might recommend you to another Chinese-speaking client and so on. Before you know it, you might have several Chinese-speaking clients approaching you to buy your product or service and you may not have the necessary materials translated into Chinese.
It’s a good idea to keep an eye on the population of your geographic region. Rather than letting the need for translation services catch up with you unexpectedly, it’s better to consider what your translation needs might be, in advance.
Keep an eye on the population of surrounding regions too. You might be selling only in a certain county or state. But it’s quite likely that you’ll have some spillover on to neighboring counties or states as well.
Are You Planning to Start a Branch in a Different Country?
Most people realize that if they want to start selling their product or providing their services in a different country, they’ll need translation services. But at what point do you get these translation services? Once the branch has already been set up or before you make any big business decisions?
1. Before Making Any Decisions
It would be best to get translation services right from the beginning of your venture. Get some brochures translated into the language of the country where you’re planning to start a branch. You can use these brochures when you’re trying to explain your product or service to your business associates in the foreign country. This might help you to make your decision about whether your foreign venture is worth getting into at all.
After getting these translation services and speaking to possible business associates, you might even end up deciding that your product is not the right fit for that country or culture. Or you may find that there’s an even greater demand for what you’re offering. Either way, you’ll have a clearer picture of what you’re getting into if you get translation services at this stage.
2. In the Business Planning Stage
The second stage, once you’ve decided to open a branch, is to come up with a business plan. Are you going to rent an office/factory space in the foreign country? How many people do you plan to hire? Who will you have heading up this branch of your company? What is your marketing campaign going to be like? You can work out the kinks with your business associates in the foreign country.
In this case, it’s a good idea to have a translator for business letters and reports so that there are no misunderstandings.
3. While Setting Up Your Business
Finally, you’ll need to put all your planning into effect. In which case you will need a translator for more business letters—to get you in touch with companies looking to lease out office space, to help you hire new people in the foreign country and other business dealings.
Although it’s possible to hire a marketing agency that will come up with a marketing campaign for you, you’ll need a translator to help you understand this campaign. After all, you wouldn’t accept an English slogan which you didn’t understand. So why should you accept one in a foreign language without fully comprehending what it means?
4. For the Day-to-Day Functioning
Once the business is set up, do you need a translator for the day-to-day functioning? At this point, you will probably have hired people who speak both, the foreign language as well as English. But it’s always a good idea to have someone on call whose primary job description is to provide translation.
Because as long as you have that branch in a foreign country running, you’re going to be writing business letters, memos and reports which need translation. And you’re going to have marketing campaigns which require translation.
So it’s a good idea to get translation services fright from the beginning of your foreign venture and to make use of them continuously while you have a presence in a foreign country.
Contact us for more great tips on understanding when you need to get translation services.