Producing foreign language publications

Producing foreign language publications

If you want to produce a brochure, leaflet, manual or other document in more than one language, e.g. a German version of your English brochure for an exhibition, here are some recommendations for how to go about it. For advice specifically on translation of your website, see our other piece below on getting your website translated.

1 Target readers

As with any piece of writing, consider who the target or likely readers will be. In the above example, will they be Germans, or could they be Austrians, Swiss or other speakers of German? Consider too their age, gender and level of knowledge of the subject-matter. Maybe you just want a straight translation of the English or maybe you need to adapt it to your intended readers.

2 Writing the text

If you decide to adapt your document for the target readership, remember to avoid plays on words and idiomatic expressions. Here are two examples of English text which may not work in other languages:

Hotel brochure strap line: “Get the full English!”
Manual for instrument providing rapid measurement of the flow-rate of liquids: “0-60 in 9 seconds!”

Once your piece is ready, send it to Cicero Translations for translation.

Finally, though we always ensure our translations are accurate and idiomatic, we sometimes find that when they are published in a brochure, leaflet or manual mistakes appear because our clients have had our translations typeset by non-linguists.
Here are some actual examples we have seen:

  • Missing hyphens and accents
  • Incorrect use of lower case and capital initial letters e.g. in a heading
  • Words split in the wrong place at the end of a line
  • Paragraphs missing entirely
  • Incorrect font
  • Text running left to right in an Arabic publication
  • Brochure in Italian bound in the Portuguese cover and vice-versa.

So please let us help you get the best return on your investment by doing the typesetting for you or reviewing the material before it goes to print.

Sectors: Business Services and Education & Training
Countries: Brazil, China, Europe, and Japan
Topics: Advertising and Getting Started
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