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[翻譯] 大多數翻譯團隊犯的第一個錯誤


The #1 Mistake Made by Most Translation Teams (and Four Examples of Why It Matters).

大多數翻譯團隊犯的第一個錯誤(以及舉四個例子為甚麼重要)
Failing to engage in meaningful transcreation as part of introducing products to a foreign market can be costly. Do so at your peril.

Marketing oriented translation work is beset with potential hazards. Whether you are concerned with packaging, signage, ad copy, or an international website’s user interface, you know that the path is challenging. (Those compliance and training people don’t know how good they’ve got it.)

There is a single mistake that marketing oriented translation teams make in porting their message to a new market. And if you avoid that mistake, your likelihood of developing a successful campaign goes up dramatically.

沒有把創譯(創造價值的翻譯)作好,在產品進入外國市場的時候會造成血本無歸,請認真看待這件事。

跟市場有關的翻譯工作常常有潛在性風險。不管是廣告,國際網站介面,都有其挑戰。(順利執行的人員其實並不知道他們做到的成就其實不簡單)

我們在此可以談談在市場有關的翻譯團隊把產品意念推入一個新的市場時犯的一個錯誤。假如能順利躲過,那麼專案成功的機率會大大上升。

The #1 mistake made by most translation teams is… Concentrating on translation over transcreation.

大多數翻譯團隊犯的第一個錯誤就是… 太重視翻譯的正確性,而沒有專注在創造價值的翻譯。

What is transcreation? Most simply put, it is the process of taking a current brand or message and a.) assessing its meaning and significance in its home market, b.) analyzing the target market with an eye towards discovering if that meaning resonates and is culturally significant there, and c.) developing a lexicon, set of guidelines, and body of concepts that will govern how that brand is used in the target market.

創造價值的翻譯是甚麼意思?就是把一個已經在原本本土市場有價值與表徵的品牌或文字,透過觀察分析目標市場,找到相對應的文化表徵,並且設定一個在目標市場此品牌能夠準確定義的詞彙概念,準則,內涵。

A competent transcreation team:

  • Works first to understand your brand,
  • Then researches the target market using native speakers and residents,
  • And finally proposes a modified or new brand identity and guidelines together with launch alternatives.

一個能勝任此創譯工作的團隊會具備以下能力

  • 能夠迅速地了解品牌。
  • 能夠研究了解本地住民的市場。
  • 最終會在產品問世時賦予品牌一個調整過後的或全新的定位。

This makes transcreation a deeper consultative process than localization. Localization assumes that a base level of appropriateness is already in play for a brand and strives to make sure that any translation efforts are executed in a way that respects local market behavior. Localization also strives to offer up translation that is both technically correct and rich in nuance – using idioms and slang (where appropriate) to convey an already determined message.

這樣的創譯流程其實讓整件事情變得比單純的本地化來的複雜。本地化是基於一個已經既存的產品定位的準確性,並且確定任何翻譯都依照此定位下在區域市場執行。創譯譯在正確性與細節的豐富度上會力求完美,會使用成語或俚語來正確轉譯文字。

Strict translation (whether human or machine based) is then reserved for the types of content that either don’t rely heavily on context like ingredients, technical product descriptions or assembly instructions.

而不管是人工或是透過機器進行,縝密的翻譯工作會盡量保留原本的意思,像是翻譯成分,技術文件,或指令。

Clients come to us with a variety of different translation needs and we often need to tease out whether or not the most appropriate approach begins with transcreation or whether we can move straight to localization and translation work.

我們的客戶有時候是從不同的翻譯需求來切入,我們會討論是否需要從創譯的方式來進行,還是直接進入本地化或翻譯工作。

Emerging translation programs (those that are just getting off the ground in porting content to a new market and language group) need a firm foundation of transcreation. Much of our work in the online games space falls into this category – young companies with new products are preparing to enter international markets for the first time.

通常是新的翻譯計畫才會有創譯的需求(新內容的發布,新市場,新語言),線上遊戲剛好落數這個範疇。尤其是那些想要進入國際市場的新公司。

When we encounter more mature programs, there is less need for the deep dive implied by transcreation (unless we are asked to come rescue a mature program that is in deep trouble). Instead we work within existing, well-conceived international branding guidelines to provide localized, audience-appropriate content. This is the type of work we do for brands like Nike in providing on-the-fly translation for World Cup videos.

當執行到比較成熟的產品,就比較沒有必要深入研究創譯的內容(除非客戶的產品在品牌上遇到麻煩)。這種情形我們就提供對於該品牌的本地化,翻譯合適的內容。就像是幫Nike提供世界盃影片的即時翻譯工作。

What’s at stake in ignoring the transcreation process? Here are four key ways (with examples) of how ignoring transcreation can damage a brand launch in a new market:

沒有進行創譯流程的風險是甚麼?這裡舉出四個關鍵(及範例)指出忽視創譯對前進新市場對品牌來的傷害。

Failure to Communicate Brand Attitude/Promise: KFC (formerly Kentucky Fried Chicken) is now the largest restaurant chain in China with over 4500 outlets. It also had the distinction of being the first Western fast food company in China, opening in 1987. Unfortunately, KFC’s slogan at the time was “Finger Lickin’ Good” – intending to convey the idea that their food was so tasty that you would ignore good table manners and lick your fingers clean rather than lose even a smidgen of the Colonel’s secret blend of herbs and spices. The slogan (and the brand) meant to convey both a “down home” sensibility and a sort of guilty pleasure richness.

When “Finger Lickin’ Good” was originally translated into Chinese, the nearest approximation involved the Chinese characters that make the phrase “Eat Your Fingers Off”. While this is amusing in its own right, the more important message is that beginning with the brand promise and then working towards a tagline is the more powerful and appropriate way to communicate rather than translating “backwards” from a slogan and hoping that it hits home in a new market.

沒有正確翻譯品牌的態度與承諾:KFC也就是肯德基是目前中國最大的連鎖商店,目前他們有四千五百個據點。他也是中國第一個西方速食公司,從1987年開始營業。不幸地,那時KFC的標題被翻譯為Finger Lickin’ Good,也就是吮指好。這樣的翻譯是帶有小吃性及豐富快感之意。

當吮指好被翻譯為中文的時候,其實最接近的中文是吃手指,他確實是可以加入一種戲謔的成分,但若傳達給消費者訊息越能接近品牌的原意,就越有利。若反向操作,只是期待能夠擊中一個新的市場。

Failure to Understand What Kind of Product You Are Selling: In the United States, dishwashers are a common appliance in the majority of home kitchens. In fact, more than 90% of homes built since 2003 are equipped with them. Thus, in the US, dishwashers are marketed as a suburban commodity with appropriate imagery.

Marketing dishwashers in Asia using a similar strategy is doomed to failure. In Pacific Asia, dishwashers are a luxury good that cost an average of $730 per unit – more than the monthly cost of a full time maid in countries like Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines. And these are countries with a known preference for employing domestic workers for household chores. Pitching dishwashers as a commodity rather than a luxury for these markets is the kiss of death – and one reason why global adoption of dishwashers has been so sluggish. Manufacturers like Bosch and Whirlpool continue to market on the basis of features. But purchasers in this case are most likely not the end-users and are more concerned with fewer features and simpler instructions – and opt for hand-washing instead.

沒有了解販賣的商品:在美國洗碗機是一個普遍的廚房用品。事實上百分之九十以上的廚房都有一台。所以在美國洗碗機普遍有著是被隨著房子販賣的印象。

但用同樣的策略在亞洲行銷洗碗機就是一個失敗的做法。在泛亞太,洗碗機是一個奢持品,每件要販售730美金。甚至比一個泰國,印尼,菲律賓全職傭人的月薪都還來得高。這些國家都會優先僱用傭人來做家務。把洗碗機當作奢侈品販賣簡直就是自找死路。其中一個原因就是用洗碗機代表懶惰。像Bosch及Whirlpool這樣的公司是以功能性來做販賣依據。但是消費者卻通常不是使用者,其實他們更關心是否有更便宜或使用簡單的機種,或是乾脆使用手洗。

Failure of Imagery To Communicate the Brand Message: When Pampers wanted to launch its disposable diaper line in Japan in the early 70’s, the company’s advertising team wanted to use a campaign that had been very successful in the US market. Baby boomers will remember the television add of a stork delivering diapers to a happy home.

The image worked great in the US market because the legend of the stork bringing babies cemented the idea in consumers’ minds that disposable diapers (and the convenience that comes with them) were an integral part of modern baby care. Unfortunately, in Japan, the image made no sense and new parents had no idea what the ad was supposed to convey.

A bit of transcreation work would have done the trick – a legend going back to the 14th Century in Japan has it that babies arrive in giant peaches, ferried to deserving parents down peaceful streams and rivers.

錯誤使用品牌的圖像:當幫寶適的可丟棄尿布70年在日本問世時,公司的廣告團隊想要用一個在美國已經證明過成功的宣傳手法。也就是一隻鸛鳥將尿布送達開心的家庭。

因為鸛鳥的送子故事在美國市場深植人心,所以這樣的宣傳手法是成功的,並讓丟棄式尿布成功成為嬰兒的必需品。不幸地,在日本這樣的畫面一點也沒有隱含意義,新手雙親,完全不了解這廣告要傳達的意念。

如果是做一個創譯的工作,就應該借用十四世紀日本的桃太郎傳說,桃太郎隨著巨大桃子而誕生,代表孩子順利生產及父母受到幫助。

Failure to Respect Local Buying Norms and Conventions: Africa is a big place with a large number of language groups and exceptionally dispersed buying power. So, despite the geographic size of the African market, it is often most economical for companies to package their goods using the most minimal printed language and, at most, brand names and limited imagery.

In addition, it’s convention in many African countries to include pictures of what is inside a package on the label. So, a box of diapers has pictures of diapers. A crate of oranges has images of oranges printed on it. And Gerber Baby Food introduced its products to the African market using the same labeling it uses in North America and Europe – with the iconic picture of the “Gerber Baby” on the jar.

You can figure out the rest.

沒有尊重規定與與購買習慣:非洲是一個多語言但分散的的購買市場。因此儘管非洲市場很大,通常公司都只會用有限度的方法來包裝產品,包含語言在內,有限度的品牌與圖片。

外加一點,大多數非洲國家中,在包裝的標籤中會包含一張指示性的圖片。因此尿布就會有尿布的照片。橘子就會有橘子的照片。嘉寶的嬰兒食物在非洲市場行銷時卻使用北美與歐洲的標籤,有個嘉寶嬰兒在罐子上。
你就知道會發生甚麼事了。
At worst, you risk losing millions (or more) in cost and potential revenue with a botched and memorably bad product launch in a new market. You only have one chance to make a first impression and if that is done badly, no amount of brand clout in your home market can save you.

最糟糕的情況是,造成了百萬的利潤及損失,品牌錯誤形象的長期打擊。事實上建立第一印象的機會只有一次,假如失敗,在家鄉的市場都不能挽回。

At best, ignoring transcreation will simply hurt sales and blind you to future opportunity. Unlike the swift and humiliating demise caused by an international translation flop, the subtle consequences of not having a well thought out transcreation strategy are like the death of a thousand cuts. You know things aren’t right and that your market projections are off, but you have no idea why. And you keep pouring money down the same poorly dug hole.

好一點,不使用創譯就只是銷售額下降及失去機會成本。沒有使用創譯就像是逐漸凌遲而死。可以很明顯看出事情有問題,產品投射失敗,但一點也不明白為什麼?只看到錢慢慢的掉進洞裡。

Got any stories to share? Thoughts about how best to incorporate transcreation in your brand’s international launch? Join us on LinkedIn and continue the discussion.

想要分享你的故事嗎?想要知道如何整合創譯到你的國際行銷嗎?加入並跟我們一起討論。

This entry was posted in Cultural Differences, International Markets and tagged , , , , on February 26, 2015 by .

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