Marketing in China? What you should know before sending your materials to translation
Many marketers contact us asking for Chinese translations for their collaterals, brochures etc. When we ask them questions like:
- Which Chinese dialect?
- What type of characters?
- Where exactly your recipients live in China?
they are a bit surprised, and don't know the answers. A few (interesting) tips that can help:
- The Chinese translator must be a native speaker of the specific Chinese dialect you're interested in. For instance, Mandarin and Cantonese as different as French and German. Although many Mandarin translators are also familiar with Cantonese, they cannot be good translators in both. Mandarin is the official Chinese dialect, so it's used in formal communications, and about 70% of China's population uses this dialect.
- In some cases, the Chinese translator should also be a resident of the area in which the dialect is used. This is especially true for Shanghai, where Shanghainese is used. Local resident will immediately notice if the translator actually lives in Shanghai.
If you're interested in traditional characters for your translations, you should check that the translator is familiar with them. However, simplified characters are more commonly used for everyday written communication.
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International Translation Day is held in celebration of the feast of St Jerome, the Bible translator widely considered the patron saint of translators. The International Federation of Translators is the promoter of International Translation Day, and has been since it was first held in 1953.
The translation industry is a relatively small one but it’s also a highly competitive one. Basically, do your research on a translation agency prior to making initial contact and it will certainly pay off; perhaps not immediately because there may not be any work available at the time, so just be patient. Your application must stand out above the rest, and by following these simple steps you should have no problem whatsoever in achieving your translation goals.