Transcreation and Translation Key Differences-min

Translation vs. Transcreation: what’s the difference?

Translation and transcreation are not identical processes, although they are related. Here I’ll explain the key differences:

Translating meaning vs. emotion

Translation is a process by which a meaning of a text is rendered from one language to another. But transcreation isn’t saying the same in another language. It goes beyond that.

When we transcreate, we want to make the target audience feel the same as the original audience. We want to evoke the same emotions, trigger the same reactions. Transcreation comes from the English words ‘translation’ and ‘creation’ – and the process involves both.

While a translation must be faithful to the original source, in transcreation this is something secondary. We might need to change the context of the message if we want to provoke the same reaction in the target language.

Why is transcreation important?

These days companies are born global. The Internet and digital technologies offer companies the possibility to reach a global audience from the start.

This new global reality allows companies to reach customers through myriad channels, platforms and geographies like never before. But this also brings together a series of new challenges for companies and marketers.

So, it’s important for companies to develop a global approach, thinking and acting both globally and locally: keeping brand consistency at a global level while engaging at a local level. And here is where transcreation comes into place!

Is transcreation just marketing translation?

The answer is not fully.

Transcreation shares some similarities with marketing translation, we can’t say that they’re exactly the same thing. Both deal with communicating the message from one language to another and both imply the translation of highly creative language.

Both aim to attract customers and resonate the brand. Both take the original message and transform it into a local one. And in both, translators must adhere to branding guidelines.

But whilst marketing translation deals with the localization or adaptation of slang, play-on-words, humour and cultural references – while keeping the style, tone of voice and context – transcreation goes beyond that.

Adaption vs. recreation

In marketing translation we talk about adaptation but when it comes to transcreation the key word is recreation. We don’t just alter, modify or adapt to suit the target audience.

In the case of transcreation, the source text can be greatly modified in the process. The idea is to create a final product that evokes the same feelings and reactions in the target audience as it does to the source audience. But the original text can be rewritten, not just adjusted.

So, when would I need transcreation?

Any company that wants to reach an international market base would benefit from investing in a transcreation plan. Customers respond better to content that speaks to them directly, linguistically and emotionally.

If you’d like to speak to me about a transcreation service then get in touch or start a live chat if I’m around.

Or if you’d prefer a straightforward translation service, I can help too!

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