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Transcreation and Translation: How it Differs

Elite AsiaLinguisticsTranscreation and Translation: How it Differs
17 July 2019 Posted by eliteasia Linguistics No Comments

It’s very easy to get transcreation and translation mixed up. This is because one does inform the other. We’ve put together a guide to six ways transcreation differs from translation.

As Much About How It Looks and Feels as Anything Else

With translation, it is all about taking text or something else and converting it into another language. Transcreation is how the translated text looks and feels. This is effective because local markets are able to understand and resonate with the text.

Produces Creative and Market-Focused

Translation is always going to be effective when you need to convert a piece of writing to another language. However, if you need text that calls the reader to act, that hits those right buttons to make them want to buy a product or service, transcreation is more effective.

Helps to Create a New Message for a New Market (If Necessary)

When you put marketing text together, the combination creates a specific group in mind. Therefore, it won’t easily translate to a different audience in a different market. Transcreation, on the other hand, can be used to alter the message you are trying to convey so that it reaches the desired groups on a local level.

All effective translators should be able to take text from apps, websites or advertising campaigns and translate them in the same spirit as the original, without merely translating literally, as the purpose could be lost in translation.

Transcreation Comes at an Hourly Rate

Generally, a translation is billed at a ‘per word’ rate. On the other hand, transcreation comes with an hourly rate or even, on some occasions, a project rate. This is because transcreation is a creative service and not just a straightforward academic translation service. Hence, the billing of transcreation is the same way video production, graphic design and copywriting often are.

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It All Starts with a Creative Brief

Translators often start with the original text before translation, whereas transcreation experts are given a creative brief. So, clients need to provide the transcreation specialist with a clear idea of what the concept is and the response you want the reader to have to the copy.

Transcreation Experts are not Just Translators

Translators and transcreation experts are not one in the same thing. Although translators will offer some multilingual copywriting services, transcreation specialists are bona fide multilingual copywriters, with the ability to write creatively with conviction, emotion and with the view to elicit a response from the target audience.

Although involved in the multilingual and translation field, they are completely different skill sets. You will find that firms or organisations, two very different groups, hire transcreation and translation experts.

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