Transcreation vs translation
Translation is key to communicating successfully with your potential customers abroad, but transcreation can help in ways translation cannot. When word-by-word translation does not work, transcreation is used to create a new message that works in the new language and maintains the impact and meaning of the original text across borders.
There are also differences between translation and transcreation in terms of the purpose, the level of adaptation, the emotional connection of readers and the type of materials:
It is important to note that translation and transcreation often work together in the same text. For example, if you are translating a hotel website or a new car brochure, there may be emotional messages throughout the copy that will require transcreation, while other sections will only need to be translated.
Closer to copywriting than translation
While a good translation often requires a certain degree of adaptation, transcreation usually calls for a total adaptation of the message and the tone of voice to remain consistent with the concept of the original message. Therefore, transcreation is associated with copywriting because it requires the same creative writing skills that copywriting does.
More than just words
Our language experts will ensure that all the creative elements of your materials, such as imagery, colour, and layouts, align with the local market and the ideas behind the new wording. The ultimate goal of the new copy is to provoke a response, and this often requires new images that work together with the new messaging.
Capturing the uniqueness of each language
What works in one language, may not work in another one and vice versa. For example, McDonald’s decided not to translate its motto “I’m loving it” into a number of languages to remain faithful to its American feel. Instead, they opted for the slogan “It’s good to get together” in other countries to better suit their culture. As long as you connect with your target audience, the message is right!
3 examples of good transcreations
Here are some real examples of transcreation that show how getting your message right can determine whether your international campaigns are a success or a failure.
A great example of transcreation is the tagline for the Samsung S6 in Arabic. The English tagline reads “Next is now”, which is based on the idea that the smartphone is equipped with the latest (or future) technology.