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Why Mistranslation Matters More than You Think

We’ve all had the pleasure of laughing at a funny translation fail. Like the time when a restaurant owner served Language in Sauce on his menu. A very witty Google Translate suggestion for translating of Lengua in Salsa in English. 

But if you think mistranslations are harmless mistakes that cause an occasional giggle, think again. 

The real cost of mistranslation

A faulty translation can end up in devastating lawsuits and losses, too. There are glaring examples of million-dollar hospital lawsuits due to a wrong diagnosis. We’ve also seen cases of large corporations losing hundreds of thousands in marketing costs. The main culprit? A mistake in translation. 

A mistranslation might be eroding your revenue stream more subtly, too. With the exponential growth of information, our attention span is decreasing. So your customers are becoming pickier about their purchase decisions. A poorly translated message can become a tipping point for a customer. Why? The low quality of your content does not evoke trust. And if they don’t trust you, they won’t buy from you.

Saving on translation services looked like a wise move. But in reality, it could be costing you tenfold in the sales you lose.

How to avoid mistranslations?

Speaking two languages is not the same thing as knowing how to translate. Translation requires skill and training. Another vital part of ensuring quality is inherent to a well-controlled process. It includes certified translators, translation memories for consistency, and proofreading. Something only a serious translation agency will provide.

If assurance fails, there’s insurance

Translation is a human process. So there is a slight chance of something going South even with the best processes in place. If that happens, a good translation agency will have business liability insurance to cover potential losses arising from a mistranslation. This is something that freelancers rarely offer because the cost of such insurance is high.  

With LingPerfect, you can rest assured and insured. We have a rubber-stamped quality management process (ISO 9001:2015). And on top of it – best-in-class liability insurance. 

Now is the time to get ready for your new global market

These are unprecedented times for all of us. With the economy giving no signs of a quick and steady recovery, business is becoming increasingly hard to predict. At least that’s what the experts say.

In reality, what they mean is that business-as-usual is becoming increasingly challenging to predict. Because your customers are still out there, and so are their needs. What is changing is how they make their buying decisions and how (or where) they enjoy your service or product.

The current situation has produced an unseen peak in online content consumption across the globe, driving an increasing number of interactions from offline into the online realm. The Internet has become a significant business delivery channel even for industries traditionally bound to physical presence – think yoga studios or museums, for instance. We wager that this trend will continue long after the movement restrictions have been lifted.

So what does this mean for your business? 

Well, it can mean good news. With more and more of life’s activities consumed remotely, your business is less bound to be physically present in the local market. Therefore, it’s a perfect opportunity to reconsider your customer geography – who will your business be targeting after the slowdown. Now more than ever, it’s time to plug into that The World is My Market mindset.

In this new reality, there are some new ground rules you should consider, however. A more global audience means having to deal with a variety of new cultures. The key success factor will be your ability to address customer needs and create value around your brand locally. Having your corporate or e-commerce website in English will not be enough. Pitching your prospects with marketing collaterals that don’t resonate with the local culture will result in fewer leads and fewer sales.

In other words, you need to walk the walk in the local culture, or else your message will get lost amidst the plethora of content out there.

If you want to be ready for this new reality arising after the slowdown, you need to start investing in creating localized content now. Translating and culturally adapting your marketing and sales materials should become an integral part of your business strategy, not a nice-to-have marketing perk.

Luckily, you won’t need to set up regional teams or offices to help you create your content locally – we’ve got your covered there. With our global team of expert linguists and content strategists, we take your message and recreate it so that it gets heard and acknowledged in the local culture. Drop us a line or give us a call, and we’ll be happy to walk you through the details.

TO ALL OUR VALUED CUSTOMERS AND PARTNERS

LingPerfect cares: during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, our top priority is the health and well-being of all our employees, linguists and partners around the globe. Your health, safety and welfare are important to us. LingPerfect wants to assure you that we actively monitor the progress of the virus, communicating daily with many of our customers and working together to address this serious challenge. We will continue to be an active partner for you in your preparation efforts and in the event of a pandemic.

What we do: we are implementing active safety procedures. Due to the person-to-person spread of the virus we are introducing safety measures which are designed to minimize direct personal contact. In this time of crisis, we have implemented a set of processes to ensure business continuity for our employees and customers around the globe. All our project management work will continue seamlessly 24/7.

IT’S TIME FOR BUSINESS CONTINUITY PLANNING

What we offer: a highly qualified global list of remote distributed interpreters – our network provides access to distributed points of service and allows uninterrupted operations.

Contact us to ask how to:

  • move your face-to-face interpreters over to video remote interpreting (VRI),
  • access/set up interpreting by phone,
  • deliver American Sign Language interpretation by video,
  • integrate video remote interpreting-on-demand directly into existing platforms or workflows,
  • improve online meetings (GoToMeeting, Zoom, Microsoft Teams and others) with interpreters using API or phone.

Because the best time to prepare is now, LingPerfect has set up a special team to address any queries related to your business continuity planning. Please contact us directly at sales@lingperfect.com as soon as possible for more information and to schedule these programs.

Thank you for your continued trust and partnership with LingPerfect. Stay safe and be well.

Global Technical Skills: Keeping the Secure, Secure in Localized Government

Security is important for everyone, but for those working in government organizations, it can literally mean the difference between life and death. Intelligence agencies, military intelligence, and government agencies deal with highly secure information on a daily basis and each person with access to this data constitutes an additional risk to the safety and security of the information they are accessing, and to the lives of the people they need to protect. In an international environment, where content is translated to and from English with language pairs all over the world, there is an even greater risk of leaks unless those in charge of security take measures to protect the information. This blog will give recommendations on protecting your data security, especially when you are working with outside resources to manage your content translation.

One of the first questions you need to ask when you are working with a translation project is what level of security does it require? For the most secure documents, many organizations will source translations internally, which means if there is a staff translator who is a native speaker of the target language and can translate the document accurately and on secure internal networks, this work will be done at the office. In most cases, these individuals will need to have security clearances, so make sure you know who is touching your content and what clearances they have. When the security needs are not so extensive as to require an internal resource or security clearance, you will want the assurance that the translation service provider you choose takes appropriate precautions to keep your data safe.

            There are a number of ways to investigate the security of your supplier. One is to ask who, both among the employees of their company and the contractors, will have access to your data and where this access will take place. You can request that the translators and the project manager work in specific offices with network security, even onsite at your location, and that there is no way for data to fall into the wrong hands. Another tip for people concerned about security is to request that all contractors or employees who work with your content sign NDAs or umbrella NDAs which specifically reference your project and any extra security requirements. Lastly, you will want to make sure that the translation service provider has taken quality management precautions as certified by the ISO 9001 family of certifications:

“This standard is based on a number of quality management principles including a strong customer focus, the motivation and implication of top management, the process approach and continual improvement. These principles are explained in more detail in the pdf Quality Management Principles. Using ISO 9001:2015 helps ensure that customers get consistent, good quality products and services, which in turn brings many business benefits.”

Source (https://www.iso.org/iso-9001-quality-management.html)

LingPerfect Translations has been ISO 9001:2015 certified since 2013. We would be happy to discuss the details of the certification with you as well as any security issues you may have with your content translation services.

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