How can you ensure your brand image remains consistent when translating content for the global marketplace? Many businesses use style guides to create English language content, but they may not realize the importance of developing one for their translated content. A translation style guide establishes style and tone, grammatical conventions, and terminology for maintaining your company’s voice and image in multilingual materials.
A translation style guide should be concise. If possible, it should include relevant examples for each language pair from previous translation projects. Some companies may choose to prepare a general style guide for all languages. Others may elect to create a style guide for each target language. A translation style guide should include each of the following:
Share the translation style guide with everyone involved in the translation and localization process, from content stakeholders and copywriters to translators and reviewers. It should become an invaluable tool that is integrated into every step of content creation. However, remember that the guide is not a static document. As your brand and services evolve, update it to reflect any changes. Incorporate feedback from translators, reviewers, and project managers; the style guide should reflect an ongoing dialogue with your translation partners as your company’s global presence matures.
When used in tandem with translation memories, glossaries, and quality assurance tools, the translation style guide can increase translator productivity, streamline the review process, and reduce costs. Most importantly, consistent use of your style guide helps assure that your brand continues to resonate with your target audience.