Translation services can be an incredible asset when used properly. Marketers that are arming themselves with language translation services are unlocking doors to markets that they have previously been locked out of. Setting aside marketing budget to hire a Language Service Provider (LSP) can help you tap into new customer groups that you would normally not have access to if marketing in a single language only.
Language Service Providers are companies that offer translation, localization and interpretation services. They can help you translate and localize your marketing content, including:
- Websites and landing pages
- Advertisement campaigns in print, digital and outdoor spaces
- Marketing and sales collateral such as brochures, flyers, business cards, signage and posters
- Social media content
- Public relations pieces including press releases and media alerts
- Subtitles for videos
The advantages of hiring a Language Service Provider to translate your key marketing pieces include reaching new customers, improving purchases, creating a better overall customer experience and improving SEO and in-bound leads. Additionally, when you start offering your marketing materials in other languages, you’ll get an international image associated with your brand.
Here are three reasons why language translation services should be a major line item in your 2019 marketing budget:
1. Language Services via a Quality Language Provider Can Help Improve Purchases
If you assume that your customers speak your language well enough and skip the language translation step, you’re wrong. There is a strong link between providing content in your customers’ mother languages and the likelihood of those consumers making a purchase. A study on this very topic found the following:
- 72.4% of consumers said they would be more likely to buy a product with information in their own language 1
- 72.1% of consumers spend most or all of their time on websites in their own language 2
- 56.2% of consumers said that the ability to obtain information in their own language is more important than price 3
If you are on the fence about getting your content translated into additional languages, you are missing an opportunity to improve purchases with customers. When you consult with a Language Translation Provider, they will translate and localize your content so that it is culturally appropriate for your intended audience across a variety of subject areas and industries.
2. Language Services Can Make Translation Cost Effective
Multilingual marketing, such as making your website available in multiple languages, is one of the more cost-effective ways of marketing your company. By using existing content that has already been produced in a primary language, the initial leg work of writing the material has already been accomplished. Translation helps you get more mileage out of your work through repurposing it. By localizing your content for new markets, you will expand your reach to new customers.
For those that are tasked with measuring the ROI (Return on Investment) of language translation services, there are several tools that you can look at for measurement:
- Revenue vs. translation cost – Add up the costs of language translation services and then measure the revenue generated after launching the language campaign. Financial performance can be measured short-term per quarter or more long term year-over-year.
- Conversion rate – After launching a marketing or advertising campaign into a translated language, you can measure how many customers were acquired from each campaign. If there are multiple touchpoints of the campaign, then you will want to look at the total cost of the campaign versus the total number of new customers acquired.
- Online campaign conversion rates – By measuring the conversion rate of leads off of webpages, social media, or ads offered in additional languages, you will be able to measure if the project paid off. This can be done by tallying web leads and measuring how many converted into customers.
- Market share – Some industries have market share reports available from third party groups. These are usually available via subscription. This allows you to measure how you are performing against competitors in your industry. With these reports you can measure your market share before and after launching your language campaigns.
- Website or Webpage Traffic (by country and language) – Google Analytics (which is a free service that analyzes website data) offers a report featuring countries and languages your site traffic comes from. This will help you determine if the language campaign brought in new customers from locations where the languages of your translated content are spoken.
- Number of new customers – A simple method for measuring marketing success is to add up the amount of new customers that you acquired after launching your language campaign, and then compare against campaigns that are not offered in multiple languages.
- Customer satisfaction – After successfully implementing several language campaigns, you can measure customer satisfaction through customer surveys.
Of course there are additional ways to measure ROI in the short term, but also keep in mind that language translation and localization will have long-term benefits to expanding your brand’s appeal to customers.
3. Language Translation Improves SEO and Inbound Marketing Efforts
Over 61 percent of marketers say that improving their SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and growing their organic presence is their top inbound marketing priority.4 As it should be, because search engines lead people to your site. When you have quality content made available in multiple languages, you are expanding your digital footprint, which means more visibility and reach for your organization’s products and services. If SEO is a major part of your marketing strategy and therefore your marketing budget, then language translation will help you uncover new keywords in new languages which will further your multilingual SEO efforts. To learn more make sure to read our article on multilingual SEO.
A quality Language Service Provider can help advise you on how to best set-up your website to accommodate new languages. Some providers even offer to design the webpages on your behalf so that you can fully take advantage of all the criteria that Google uses to rank multilingual websites. This is key to making sure that your SEO efforts are being implemented according to Google’s best practices. If you don’t structure your pages correctly, you can be penalized by Google and not fully realize your SEO and inbound marketing efforts.
Levon Guiragossian, Marketing Consultant
Levon is a marketing consultant and writer. His current focus areas include content marketing, digital strategy and multilingual branding. Before working with Language Link, Levon led corporate marketing efforts through various management and leadership roles with companies around the world. Levon is a graduate of the University of Queensland in Australia where he holds a Bachelors of Business Management with a major in Marketing.
1 Harvard Business Review. “72.4% of consumers said they would be more likely to buy a product with information in their own language”. 2012. https://hbr.org/2012/08/speak-to-global-customers-in-t
2 Harvard Business Review citing CSA Research. “72.1% of consumers spend most or all of their time on websites in their own language”. 2012. https://hbr.org/2012/08/speak-to-global-customers-in-t
3 Harvard Business Review citing CSA Research. “56.2% of consumers said that the ability to obtain information in their own language is more important than price”. 2012. https://hbr.org/2012/08/speak-to-global-customers-in-t
4 Hubspot. (2019). Over 61 percent of marketers say that improving their SEO and growing their organic presence is their top inbound marketing priority”. 2019. Retrieved from https://www.hubspot.com/marketing-statistics
About Language Link
At Language Link, we excel at helping our customers grow their brands through our translation and interpretation services. Headquartered in Vancouver, Washington and incorporated in 1991, Language Link has more than 27 years of experience as a full-service multilingual communication agency. We have highly qualified linguists working in over 240 languages and dialects. We also offer a comprehensive suite of translation options, including audio visual services and eLearning and website localization, as well as Over-the-Phone and Video Remote Interpretation.