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Can you evaluate transcreation effectiveness?

If you have already worked with a Translation agency, the chances are that you know how to assess the quality of a translation project. However, when your Language Service Provider suggests you transcreate content on your website, you are always sceptical. Obviously, your caution is because you do not know how to evaluate Transcreation effectiveness. How could you understand whether a text turned inside out has the same effectiveness in a foreign language? Where do you begin to assess a transcreation project?

In the case that you have had a long working relationship with one translation agency, you have probably set up quality standards, glossaries and style guides to be able to assess translations. Transcreation is a different thing. It reinvents the source message in order to strike and engage the target audience. You cannot directly compare the campaign created by your marketers and the one created for a local market by a team of transcreators.

However, evaluation of Transcreation Effectiveness is very important, as it can determine the success of your marketing strategy abroad. Here are a few key points that you should take into consideration when you assess a transcreation project.

Effective transcreation works in your native language, too

The first thing you can do to understand how transcreators are approaching your texts is to ask for a back translation, i.e. ask for a translation of the target materials in your native language. Obviously, you should also request explanations and reasons why the professional team made a specific creative choice. Once you have all the necessary documentation you can review it and have an idea of how your language service provider and its teams communicate your messages within your target market.

Let native speakers evaluate transcreation quality

If you need to evaluate the quality of a transcreation project, the chances are that you already have a relationship with some native speakers in your target audience. They can provide you with feedback on your campaigns. You can ask for opinions from employees who come from that market area, as well as from your in-country distribution and sales partners. Just remember one thing: when you evaluate the effectiveness of a transcreation project using this method you need to explain the aim and the target audience of your campaign to your feedbackers carefully.

What to do when transcreation effectiveness issues are not obvious?

It may happen that you have a suspicion that something is wrong with your new transcreation project. However, the issue may not be obvious. In this case, you need to use techniques that your marketing and sales departments use in their everyday working lives.

• Check your sales data, social media data and Google Analytics data to understand which audience the campaign is failing to engage with.

• Organise some market research. Who can evaluate your content better than the audience you are targeting? Once you have a significant amount of data you will be able to understand which part of your campaign does not work and ask your language services provider to make amendments.

Restore the quality of a transcreation project

You have determined issues that are negatively affecting your international marketing strategy; now you have to solve them and find a solution to avoid repeating the same failure in the future. You may be tempted to fire the translation agency which delivered the project. However, this is not always the right solution, especially if you have worked with it for a while and have created a working translation process with its project managers. You should inform the linguistic provider about these issues, and work with it to analyse the causes of each issue. Once the flaws are found and the necessary amendments done, you should request to reorganise the process of your transcreation projects so as to have more effective results.
Have you ever experienced problems with your transcreation projects? Tell us about your issues and how you solved them.

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