ETS has extensive experience in translating documents for marketing and advertising purposes. And all our translators know that marketing and advertising translation is a different kind of breed. We know what translation techniques should be applied specifically to these types of materials, considering the purpose of your material, the impact you want to create, and the audience you intend to reach. We are very aware of cultural differences, and we know that a little misinterpretation may doom your product forever. We know your business—and we can help.
There is still quite some debate among scholars whether translation is an art or a science. We would say it has a little bit of both, but in the marketing and advertising arena, translation is definitively an art, because the translator is not only transmitting your message in the target language, but is re-creating a sometimes entirely different material to cause the same impact in your target language audience that the original material is causing in the original language audience. Some translators would say that marketing materials are the most exciting texts to translate, because they allow the translator to be creative enough to get your message carried across.
A very well-known story about mistranslation in Spanish comes from the 1960s, where the Chevrolet “Nova” was introduced to the Spanish-speaking market. When spoken, the word “nova” in Spanish sounds like “nova,” meaning the thermonuclear explosion (and probably the intention of the original name), and “no va,” meaning “it doesn’t go.” Even though is has been proven that this mistake did not affect the sales in South America, the marketing team probably did not want to have this word play as part of their sales campaign.
Another unfortunate case of mistranslation of marketing materials is the Braniff International Airways’ slogan: “Fly in leather.” The word-by-word Spanish translation of this creative slogan is “vuela en cuero,” which in Mexican Spanish actually means “fly naked.” We know how important is to keep the exhortative language of your marketing material, not only in slogans, but also in materials such as:
If your business needs involve marketing and advertising translation and adaptation, please contact us! We will more than happy to learn about your project, and offer you with the best translation and adaptation services tailored to your needs.