Content Localisation can be a complicated procedure with lots of potential challenges and hurdles. Most consumers prefer consuming content in their native language. After all, why would a person in China consume content in Arabic if they are not going to understand it at all? Hence, localising content is highly essential if you wish to sell your content globally.
The localisation of content is not merely translation of content; it can also involve localisation of the marketing strategy, modification of material as per local preference and much more. Some of the ways to can localise your content without additional investment in infrastructure are mentioned below.
Finding the Right People for the JobIn the words of Steve Jobs, “Great businesses are not built by a single person, good teams build them.” This statement of Steve Jobs stands right in case of localisation of content as well. When localising the material, it is essential to choose the right team for the job, a group comprising of people who understand the original content as well as its localisation needs. For instance, you would not expect a British team to localise content for the Indian Market. A functional unit for content localisation requires localisation engineers for handling database and setting guidelines, localisers to translate the content etc. Localisation not merely translating words from one language to another but involves localising the message as well.
- Content localization teams should entirely avoid using translation tools such as Google translate while localising content as bad translation can completely alter the essence of the material and drive away potential consumers
- Saving cost in the localisation of content will only sway your potential costumers away and cost you more towards fixing the errors in the future.
Appoint a Localization ManagerAny content localisation activity is incomplete without a localisation manager who is required to coordinate with the dedicated team of the original content creator/owner, translators, programmers, voice-over/dubbing team etc.
- It should be a full-time job requiring a wide array of skills and handling of responsibilities such as
- Organising resources, handling and managing technical and linguistic issues. Many other problems can also include balancing cultural difference, administrative functions, optimisation and efficiency of the localisation process etc.
- People management functions are essential as a wide range of coordination is required between the translation team, voice over/dubbing team, engineering team, marketing and publishing team etc.
Learn About the Local MarketBefore localising content, one needs to have some knowledge of the market for which the content needs to be restricted. The localisation team should be aware of and have an understanding of the local market, regarding culture, marketing, legislation etc. Having knowledge of local market aids creating a proper localisation of content for a particular market.
For instance, when localising content for a market as diverse in India, the content team is required to be aware of which region is the content needs to be marketed and targeted, which languages the content needs to be localised. A material might require a different form of localisation in South India as compared to other parts of the country. Hence knowing about the market can allow the localisation team to plan and design a localisation of content appropriately.
Define your Target MarketAn international consumer of content might not be the same as the consumer of the home country. Also, in the developing countries, consumers in urban, semi-urban and rural regions might have different content consumption. Hence it is essential for a localisation team to needs to correctly identify its target market and audience for whom the content needs to be localised. This will aid them to appropriately plan and design content localisation as per the needs and requirements of their target market.
Invest in Flexible TechnologiesWhen content needs to be localised in multiple regions around the world, as localisation might require in changes in audio and video formats, UI layouts, etc. For instance, most content created in the west might be suitable for 4K and HD viewing, whereas many developing countries might not have a high penetration of hardware ideal for 4K and HD viewing hence the content might be required to be downgraded to standard definition.
Adopting Localised Marketing techniques for marketing Localised contentLocalised content needs to be marketed appropriately to ensure that the target market consumes the data. What works in one region does not guarantee it will work in another area as well. For instance, cola giants like Pepsi and Coca-Cola have to take print advertisement to a complete localisation level, i.e. have ads painted on walls instead of having printed billboards and hoardings. Similarly, localised content can also be marketed and distributed in a restricted manner.
- While marketing localised content, the localisation team also needs to take care of the following
- Allowing consumers to pay in their local currencies.
- Using unit of measurements, address formats, time formats etc. as used in the local region for which the content is being localised to avoid confusing the audience.
- Cultural sensitivity is also essential while marketing localised content as a content which is deemed humorous in one culture might be considered to as derogatory or offensive in another culture.