Brief for a Successful Transcreation Project

For professionals, the essence of a transcreation project is to understand your company, the product or service you want to market, and the target audience, so that they can deliver the content that will meet your needs, seduce your target groups, and provide or exceed the ROI, that you expect.

To get the big picture, detailed information about the following points is usually required:

1. Project goal

What do you want to achieve with the project – is it a market entry, is it a website or app launch, do you want to launch a new product line or offer a new service, etc.? What do you want to do, how do you want to do it, and why? Are you going to transcreate all the content, or maybe only the slogans and banners? When short sentences or slogans need to be transcreated, it is essential to provide as much context as possible and indicate where the copy or the marketing campaign will appear, to get the right message across.

2. Brand identity

How do you define your company’s identity? What makes you different? How do you want to present yourself and your product or service to your German target audience? Bear in mind, that the brand defines your company’s identity, and it is essential in creating the framework for the communication approach and content strategy. The brand identity shapes the story that the company is telling its customers about its product or service, it is a recurring theme, that will eventually create brand awareness in the new market.

3. Tonality or voice

Another important thing is creating a voice for the brand. Will you address the German audience with the formal Sie or the informal du? This is a tricky question – in German marketing, they are in a plain transition from Sie to du, so there is no one-size-fits-all answer to that and the decision highly depends on the company’s tonality and the target groups.

Think about your company’s tonality and decide, whether you want to come across as serious, secure, business-like, or you prefer to be playful, easygoing, inventive, creative, strong, glamorous, attractive, etc.

4. Target audience

It is very important to get a clear picture of the audience you want to reach. It is important to use the right language to get the attention of your audience and keep it, otherwise, they will lose interest in a matter of seconds and go to a competitor that addresses them in a more appealing language. The profile you provide should include detailed information about age range, gender, socio-economic status and interests. A target audience description such as “German users on our website” won’t help to transcreate your content efficiently.

5. Target market

Why did you choose the German market, and what are your expectations? Share any market-specific information in the brief that might have an impact on the content transcreation. Are there any legal and compliance aspects that should be taken into account? Is it forbidden to use certain wording? Is the company obliged to include specific information about their products in the German market? Don’t forget that the source content, more often than not, does not cover all the requirements for all the markets in which the company is operating. And last but not least, who is your strongest competition in Germany? If possible, name at least three companies.

6. Product / Service

Provide product descriptions with high-level features, user workflows and exceptions, and screenshots of the product if they are not already available online. The same goes for a service. It’s crucial for the translator to understand the product or service well.

Extra tip

If you have an updated list with the keywords in German, that would be of great help.

Jelena Morgan

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