BUSINESS VIDEO MASTERCLASS
PART 5 - GETTING FOREIGN LANGUAGE VERSIONS RIGHT
Many firms and organisations - most of us - are seeing national boundaries shrink and become almost meaningless in a business sense, in that “the web let’s us sell anywhere in the world”.
And it’s true. If you aren’t already selling outside your own country, you probably could, maybe even with a government grant to help.
Video is now at the leading edge in any overseas sales development.
It’s become the first touch point, contact point, for foreign sales development, beyond a bare web brochure presence.
For me, perhaps like many other companies, it came by accident when “foreigners” started writing in asking for us to produce a video for them, often with google-translated English emails, but quite good, spoken-English telephone calls.
At the same time, local UK-based international clients dragged us overseas with them as they expanded their own operations.
Whichever way it happens, it helps enormously that in many countries, people now speak some English in business, often enough to understand your English business video.
In Germany or the Netherlands I’ve always found English widely understood in the big cities. Same in Paris. But less so in the south of France, or the east of Italy. It’s very variable, often depending on the age of the person, as younger people all study English, while older people didn't necessarily have English on their curriculum back in the day.
The same in Dubai, the UAE, and elsewhere.
Nonetheless, movies and television in English still dominate, and people all over the world watch them with subtitles, reading text at the bottom of the screen to understand what’s being said, and sometimes following the spoken English that’s actually being said.
So what’s the rule? How do you know when to produce a foreign language video?
YOUR GOAL: TO WIN MORE LEADS FROM YOUR NEXT VIDEO.
Why bother with foreignspeak
If you’ve been using, or considering using English video to penetrate foreign markets, you’ll probably be asking yourself these questions:
“When do we need to produce foreignspeak video?”
“How do we do it?”
“What does it cost?”
“How can it go wrong?”
This reminds me of a story by Willy Brandt, ex-chancellor of Germany, who put it very nicely:
“If you’re selling to me, you speak my language.
And if I’m selling to you, I speak your language.”
This more or less says that if you want to succeed in a foreign market, you need video they can understand in their own language.
For winning big contracts often there are many stipulations, such a having own-language documentation, or employing local people where possible, and similar.
As a valued visitor to Business Video Masterclass, you’re now welcome to a FREE 15 minute personal consultation with me, where you can ask about a video problem that’s on your mind.
I’ve spent most of my professional life solving real world video problems.
It’s relaxing for me. I enjoy it. So please share your ambition or concern, and I’ll do my best to help.