Balance and Compromise: Issues in Content Localization

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I gave this presentation at Confab 2012, the Content Strategy conference in Minneapolis, US. It's an updated version of the one I gave in September 2011 at the Content Strategy Forum in London.

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Balance and Compromise: Issues in Content Localization

  1. 1. Weaving localization issues into a content strategyIssues in Content LocalizationLise JanodyConfab 2012, Minneapolis, May 15, 2012
  2. 2. LocalizeWhy Localize ?
  3. 3. ENGLISH IS THE WORLD’S MOST INFLUENTIAL LANGUAGEGeorges Weber, The World’s 10 Most Influential Languages
  4. 4. ….AND IT ISN’T ABOUT TO CHANGE ANY TIME SOON89% of Europeanschoolchildren learn English asa second languageVery high level of comfort withEnglish among more than 50%of Europeans350 million Chinese arelearning EnglishIt is the de facto language ofwork in many global companiesEurobarometer 2011: User Language Preferences Online - Robert McCrum, Globish: How English became the world’s language, Anchor Canada 2011;Image Fotolia
  5. 5. But… Ability is not Preference Preference 9 of 10 Internet users would access web in THEIR language – if given the choice*Eurobarometer 2011: User Language Preferences Online
  6. 6. Getting the gist is not Details Getting the details 44% of European internet users believe they’re missing information when accessing in non-native language*Eurobarometer 2011: User Language Preferences Online
  7. 7. ACCEPTANCE IS NOT ADHERENCEEurobarometer 2011: User Language Preferences Online
  8. 8. Access is not Transaction Transaction Only 18% of EU internet users polled would purchase goods or services in a foreign language. *Eurobarometer 2011: User Language Preferences Online
  9. 9. WHY NOT JUST USE GOOGLE TRANSLATE?
  10. 10. Preference User preference + More sales +Trust and persuasion = Localization is good BUT
  11. 11. Localization is hard hard •  Costly •  Time-consuming •  Quality an ongoing issue •  Budgets are fragmented •  Requires supporting tools and processes •  Creates complexity
  12. 12. Q How can we help reduce costs, speed translation cycles, make it less complex? A Make it part of the content strategy cycle, and not a parallel process
  13. 13. A FEWDEFINITIONS
  14. 14. Localization is the process of adaptinginternationalized software for a specificregion or language by adding locale-specific components and translating text. From Wikipedia
  15. 15. A SERIES OF LONG ACRONYMS: GILT G11N Globalization L10N Going into L18N Localization T9N other markets Internationalization Adapting content Translation to another context Ensuring platforms Taking content in and tools can one language and handle technical making it requirements of understandable in globalization: fonts, another date formats, time formats, error pages, etc.
  16. 16. Localization Translation COUNTRY LANGUAGE Country & Language LOCALES
  17. 17. MODELChoice of approach affects your Architectural Model
  18. 18. LOCALE FIRST
  19. 19. GLOBAL REACH, LOCAL TOUCHCorporate site is in two languages: English and language of Headquarters
  20. 20. GLOBAL REACH, LOCAL TOUCH – REDUCED SCOPE CONTENT
  21. 21. GLOBAL REACH, LOCAL TOUCH
  22. 22. REDUCED SCOPE, FEWER LEVELS
  23. 23. MULTI-PURPOSE, DIFFERENT AUDIENCES
  24. 24. MULTI-PURPOSE, DIFFERENT AUDIENCES
  25. 25. MULTI-LANGUAGE VERSIONS
  26. 26. MULTI-LANGUAGE VERSIONS
  27. 27. LOCALIZED RESOURCES WITHIN ENGLISH SITEInternational English default, with limited localized resources
  28. 28. SEOApproach impacts SEO •  Localized keyword research •  Duplicate content among countries with same language •  New Google hreflang tags
  29. 29. SMSApproach impacts CMS •  Substitute components •  Add/remove •  Parent/child •  Content modeling
  30. 30. Approach impacts Governance Governance •  One rule for all locales? •  One rule for the whole site? •  Can you localize the landing page? •  Can you localize entire sections? •  Can you opt-in/opt-out? •  Specific pages? •  Specific page components?
  31. 31. And of course, Content Content
  32. 32. THE GOAL: MAKING YOUR LOCALIZED CONTENT EFFECTIVEPRINCIPLES OFEFFECTIVE CONTENT*…. ….APPLIED TO LOCALIZATION APPROPRIATE Does it apply to the local context? USEFUL Is your purpose the same in all your markets? USER-CENTERED Can your users understand? CLEAR Is translation quality high? Is it localized? CONSISTENT Are you reinforcing brand while keeping costs down? CONCISE Less is more – and less costs less SUPPORTED Do you have the processes, tools, people, and budgets required?*From Elements of Content Strategy, Erin Kissane, A Book Apart, 2011
  33. 33. YOUWHAT’S BEST FOR ?
  34. 34. SETTING TARGETS, EXAMINING WHAT YOU HAVE…
  35. 35. SETTING THE TARGETCreating baselines • Market size and • Ability to speak potential English • Legal & contractual • Language preference obligations • Audience A, B, C, D • Brand recognition • Formal/informal • Competition • Other elements impacting Look and Market Cultural feel forces forces • Market presence • Type Internal Site • Inform • Number of Forces objectives • Educate People • Interact • Consistency of • Convert offering • Transact • Culture and Heritage • Recruit
  36. 36. BASELINE TARGETS DEFINING WHERE YOU WANT TO GO •  Number of languages •  IA Model (or models) •  Number of tiers
  37. 37. REVIEWING YOUR LOCAL SITES IF YOU’RE NOT STARTING FROM SCRATCH From what bucketWHAT’S ON THE WEBSITE IN % of bucket that’s translatedLOCAL LANGUAGES? % of bucket that’s localized How it’s maintained Owner Enlist local help to locateBUT ALSO WHAT’S OUT Mini-sites, YouTube,THERE? SlideShare, Twitter, Facebook
  38. 38. QUALIFY YOUR SOURCE CONTENT•  Volume of web pages•  Volume of associated content assets•  How often content changes•  Relevance to local audiences•  Budget and ownership•  Potential for localization
  39. 39. EXAMINE YOUR ECOSYSTEM•  Number of players•  Centralized or decentralized language management?•  In-house or outsourced?•  Centralized or decentralized web management?•  Who owns the budget for what? Is there one?
  40. 40. LOOK AT YOUR TOOLSET•  Translation Memory•  Terminology Management•  Translation Management•  Machine Translation
  41. 41. LOOK AT TIME AND METRICS•  Latency Time from source to published, translated version•  Metrics If there are sites, are they being visited?•  Costs Can you develop benchmarks?
  42. 42. FIND THE GAPS, REFINE THE PLAN Identify gaps – in content, tools, and resources Pretty good ballpark figure of costs - Costs per language and per word (translation) - Costs for transcreation and original content development
  43. 43. Make decisions about Content localizing content •  What you’ll do with it •  With what quality •  With what workflow •  For which formats •  For which devices
  44. 44. WHAT EXACTLY DO YOU LOCALIZE? As is Keep in full, translate as is Chunk Add, subtract Change Shorten, replace, select, rethink Leave it Link to English or provide no links
  45. 45. WHAT LEVEL OF TRANSLATION QUALITY?•  Transcreation •  Marketing messages, conceptual, value props•  Tool-supported translation •  Translation memory, terminology management, post-edited machine translation •  Structured content•  Machine translation •  Large volumes of straightforward content •  Real-time communications: forums, chat •  Also, for listening…
  46. 46. SUPPORTING DIFFERENT FORMATS•  Text…but also•  Video•  Chat•  Webinars•  Micro-copy -  Banner headlines -  Calls to action -  Asset descriptions and titles
  47. 47. SUPPORTING MOBILE DEVICES•  Truncated words•  Separate processes•  The dominance of mobile in many markets
  48. 48. SAMPLE RULES FOR SITE SECTIONSOLUTIONS Section Pages Translate Quality? Who Localize? Who CommentsTier 1 Must Must In full TC for level Central, with Add info Local 1; TM for local about in- rest validation; country Local for TC delivery capability;Tier 2 Must Opt-in Level 1 TC for level Central, with Add info Local only 1; TM for local about in- rest validation; country Local for TC delivery capabilityTier 3 Must Replace Yes TM Central, local No Use with validation default Summary www
  49. 49. Put content decisions Action into action •  Add qualifiers to your inventory •  Include requirements in your page specs •  Make your content global-ready
  50. 50. ADD COLUMNS TO YOUR INVENTORYPage Opt-In Translate Localize Status Commentswww.alpha.com/ Yes Exists Add In progresssolution/Solution1/index.htmlwww.alpha.com/ yes Exists Exists Donesolution/Solution1/index.htmlwww.alpha.com/ Yes To do Add TM done,solution/Solution1/index.html need to add
  51. 51. WEAVE LOCALIZATION INTO PAGE SPECS•  Do you translate? Yes/No•  Do you chunk, change or leave?•  What’s global, what’s local?•  What’s distinct about the local?•  What changes and how?•  Source content for local differences•  Who validates local content?•  Who pays?
  52. 52. MAKE IT GLOBAL-READY•  Remove idioms•  Keywords•  Terminology requirements•  Voice and tone
  53. 53. A FEW TIPS
  54. 54. DON’T…•  Confuse local and locally-produced•  Have several translation memories•  Use just one standard process for all your content•  Treat localization as an afterthought
  55. 55. DO….•  Use tools to support and lower costs•  Have a feedback loop with your LSP•  Keep the glossary updated•  Try to limit number of players involved•  Find alternatives to latency issues•  Track metrics•  Keep tabs on costs•  Put someone in charge
  56. 56. ThanksMerci Thanks •  Lise Janody •  www.dot-connection.com •  @lisejanody

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