When 5 words are not 5 words

We had a conference call today with one of our customers whose website we just translated into French. A dating portal. Thousands of words, but what we eventually discussed on the call with the translation team for half an hour broke down to 5. Well, no, let’s count precisely. Education level question: 3 words. Claim: 5. 8 words in total.

But these 8 words were crucial.

3 words: Within the dating website you had to tick your level of education. What if the German system hasn’t got anything to do with the UK, the French, Spanish or US system? It doesn’t, I can assure you. Will we leave the lonely hearts out there because they don’t know what to tick in this section? No. We need to make a decision.

Similar but not the same for the claim which appears on the landing page. It has to be catchy, respresent the target audience, they have to feel at home here.

We provided 5 examples with the back translation and one of our options convinced the customer. As it was targerted to the right generation, wasn’t a direct translation but conveyed a romatic feeling of the past. That was it. 5 words.

5 words of transcreation. According to the reasearch done by CSA, 15 years ago, only 3% of the translation buyer had heard of this concept. Today, about 43% are aware and embrace the idea of transcreation as a service. © CSA – Reaching Markets Through Transcreation