RABI has opened a new Washington D.C. office!
We are so excited to have a permanent space in the nation's capital. Our full range of services will continue to be offered to D.C. area businesses, with a particular focus on events management.
RABI has provided interpreters and technical equipment for conferences and events of all sizes across the U.S. for many years. We have experience working events that encompass multiple venues, and our extensive linguistic network means that we can easily accommodate last minute changes. We also provide localization services for marketing content and video production for product/brand marketing campaigns and event marketing.
For international vendors exhibiting at trade shows and conferences, we arrange conference booth services, negotiate sponsorships and event advertising, and coordinate transportation and shipping logistics. We can also help you with localizing your presentations and event literature.
The next time you're organizing a conference or plan to attend one, call RABI to help with your localization and interpretation needs.
Boston’s busiest tourist season is about to hit full swing. This year the hub is expecting tourists and convention attendees from all over the world, with the tourism board predicting we’ll top last year’s visits of more than 1.4 million people(1). More than 100,00 of those visitors hailed from Germany and another 100,000+ from China. With new non-stop flights from Shanghai, businesses can almost certainly expect an increase in Chinese visitors this summer—good news since the average Chinese tourist spends $5,400 per visit to the U.S., the highest spending average in the world(2).
Take advantage of the summer season and set yourself apart by marketing to tourists in their own languages. Place translated brochures in area hotels, use advertisements in local native language newspapers to reach tourists who are visiting their relatives, and put signage in major tourism languages in your retail locations. Based on last year’s tourist demographics, you may want to concentrate on German, Mandarin, French, Japanese, Italian, and Portuguese.
When planning your marketing strategy, don’t neglect social media. Tweet, post to Instagram, Facebook, and other social media channels in the major tourism and international business visitor languages. It’s a great way to offer discounts, create buzz, and raise your profile. You can be sure they will be checking those sites while they’re in town.
If your budget extends to it, it’s not too late to advertise your businesses in overseas markets, including Chinese social apps WeChat and Weibo, so that visitors already have your destination in mind when they arrive.
Localization companies like Red & Blue can help you craft and execute a marketing strategy to successfully target foreign visitors in their languages. We provide expert advice, on-site interpreters, high-quality translation, and localized promotional videos in all in-demand languages. Contact us to talk about how you can attract this summer’s influx of international tourists to your business.
1. Mass Office of Travel and Tourism, 2014 Report
Meetings can be bad enough when everyone is in the same room, but when participants are scattered across the globe, they can be downright unbearable. From listening to people eat, to hearing people type, and to having to repeat information for those who checked-out part way through, we're all in need of ideas to improve distributed meetings.
1. Decrease the scheduling hassle.
If your participants are scattered across time zones, it can be difficult to keep track of who's up and who's asleep. Timeanddate.com has a nifty color-coded tool that shows at a glance who's working and who's off. Red is for sleeping, green is for working, and yellow is for likely to be out of office.
2. Rotate the time.
Often the person running the meeting sets the meeting time based on her schedule. This is great for the leader, but if you're based in Boston, for example, then your Beijing team is never going to be at it's best on the calls, and if the calls are frequent, they will also start getting grumpy. Switch the times up so everyone has an chance to be on the call during normal working hours.
3. Consider hiring interpreters.
If your distributed team speaks English, but in a somewhat limited fashion, or you're holding an international meeting with a client, you might get better results if you involve an interpreter. Lots of companies waste time through simple misunderstandings.
At one company I worked for, we thought out British team was on-board with our plans when they said they were "fine" with them. Turns out, "fine" meant not at all happy; we needed to strive for having the plans be "brilliant", and that conversation was all in English!
Interpreters for conference calls don't have to be on site. They can call in from a separate location, which can reduce cost, since travel time and inconvenience won't be an issue.
4. Speak Slowly
When people can't see you and cue off of your body language and your face while you speak, they have to rely solely on your voice. Also, they may be trying to participate using their second language. You need to make sure everyone on the call really slows down when they talk. They need to pause more frequently, and they need to ask more check-in questions as they go. This brings us to the next point...
5. Summarize More
You can't see who has fallen asleep or has started to play a game on his lap top, so you need to ask dial-in attendees to summarize what they think they've heard and outline what their action steps are. Otherwise you're likely to get a lot of comments like "yes, we're good with that," when what they really mean is "hmmm...I have no idea what was just said."
6. Excellent Minutes
Finally, you'll want to designate someone to be in charge of taking detailed, clear notes of the meeting and distributing them quickly afterwards. This will help clear up any lingering ambiguity. If you use a localization agency, it can be useful for you to have the notes translated, again to make sure that the meeting outcomes and action steps are as clear as possible.
If your company is like many, you have different people in charge of different marketing streams. A team for social media, one for print ads, one for online ads, and another couple for content creation. Or maybe you're at a smaller company where everyone is expected to contribute to blogs and Tweet out pithy statements. Whichever boat you're in, when pitching to international markets, you need to unite your teams and present a unified, localized front.
When companies split up their marketing streams, they can often keep on message for their domestic market where they have a well-defined target audience. But for companies looking to sell abroad or to niche communities within their domestic market, the messaging gets more difficult.
Transcreation is a buzz word used in the localization industry. Essentially, it means that content created in one language needs to be almost re-written for a different language and culture. The essence of the content remains the same, but rather than doing a one-to-one literal translation, the meaning within the content is rendered more faithfully and more meaningfully into the target language.
Companies with marketing stream silos often rely on one-off translations (or worse, poorly rendered machine translations) and don't give enough thought into how their messages are being received in the new language/culture. If your company markets to other cultures and or in other languages, be sure to have one person in charge of all messaging to that market, and consider enlisting a localization agency that can provide the relevant industry expertise. Voice-overs for podcasts or YouTube videos, scrutiny of video footage to ensure it resonates, localization of white papers to incorporate in-country terms, sales sheets that are redesigned to emphasize product attributes that are important to the local market are all aspects of how international marketing needs to step back and take a wider view of how to adapt the corporate messaging.
Localization, if properly done, requires a holistic view of your entire marketing engine, and often a bottom-up redesign of your messaging to ensure you are reaching the market in a way that reflects your company's mission and that optimizes the aspects of your products and services that the local market most values.
We're excited to kick-off the new year with some great simultaneous interpretation projects, which reminds us that now is a good time for everyone to take a look at their calendars for 2015 and start planning.
If you have conferences or seminars on your books for later this year, it's not too early to think about securing interpretation services. Also, consider whether you need materials translated for your attendees. This can include signage, presentations, hand-outs, brochures, advertisements, or even subtitles for videos you plan to share at your event.
Get a head start on 2015 by thinking about your speaker and attendee needs now.
Happy New Year!
"Language Is a Window into the Mind."
Steven Pinker, renowned linguistics expert, discusses how nuance in language affects our relationships, both business and social. He also delves into the importance and usage of metaphors in language. Because language subtleties are so key to effective relationships, companies need to have translations of their documents done by professional translators who are fluent in the target language to ensure that those nuances are not lost or transformed. http://youtu.be/UnyJvCJrRys
Back by popular demand, the Before Babel Brigade, a Korean non-profit group, has established a phone number people can call if they need help talking to their waiters, taxi drivers, or hotel staff while attending the World Cup. Volunteers who speak English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Russian and Korean are standing by, ready to help lost World Cup fans. The only charge is the cost of the phone call. Samsung has volunteered to pick up the tab for marketing and promotion. Find out more about the service here.
Lack of Ability to Speak and Read English Creates Business Opportunities
Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are the fastest growing immigrant groups in the U.S., and 35% of them are classified as not speaking English "very well." While Chinese is the most commonly spoken language of Asian immigrants (with 472,000 Mandarin speakers and 454,000 Cantonese speakers), Tagalog, Vietnamese, and Korean are also popular languages spoken in the home. Moreover, there are an additional eight South Asian languages that are spoken by more than 100,000 people in the U.S.
Why does this matter?
The statistics show that millions of Americans have limited ability to speak and read in English. This represents an opportunity for businesses to branch out from just English and Spanish advertisements. By advertising in languages that are used in the community, for example Chinese language television ads, print ads in Vietnamese newspapers, or websites in Korean, businesses can show their markets that they are tapped into their needs. Companies that ignore these opportunities may lose out when their competition recognizes the value of the under-served local market.
For More Information, read the Center for American Progress' Press Release and access the full report.