Unlocking Global Markets: A Comprehensive Guide to Translating Portuguese Business Videos into English

The views expressed in this post are the writer's and do not necessarily reflect the views of Aloa or AloaLabs, LLC.

As the global economy becomes increasingly interconnected, companies of all sizes are looking to expand their reach beyond domestic borders. For Portuguese businesses, translating marketing and informational videos into English presents a major opportunity to unlock new international audiences.

With over 1.5 billion English speakers worldwide, translating Portuguese business videos into English opens access to global markets on an unprecedented scale. English serves as the lingua franca of international business, and a professionally translated English version of a video can engage viewers worldwide.

Challenges of Translating Business Videos

If you are interested in how to translate a video from Portuguese into English, you should be aware that it poses some unique challenges that require special attention.

Cultural Nuances

  • Understanding cultural references and colloquialisms in Portuguese that may not directly translate into English. Portuguese business culture has its distinct nuances.

Technical Jargon

  • Business, industry, or product-specific terminology in Portuguese that requires careful translation into natural-sounding English equivalents. Avoiding literal translations that sound unnatural.

Contextual References

  • Subtle contextual references in Portuguese that rely on shared cultural knowledge may need additional explanation for an English-speaking audience unfamiliar with internal Portuguese business contexts.

Overcoming these challenges requires translators highly familiar with the culture, language, and business context of Portuguese videos. Careful consideration is needed to convey information accurately and naturally in English.

Pre-Production Planning

Adequate preparation and planning before starting the translation process is crucial for achieving high-quality results. Here are some key steps to take during the pre-production phase:

Hire Translators Familiar with Your Industry

Domain expertise matters. Try to work with translators who have experience in your specific industry and are familiar with the terminology, concepts, and context. A translator well-versed in legal matters may struggle with a video on financial accounting, for example. Seek out translators with proven backgrounds in your field.

Provide Context and Background Materials

Give translators as much context as possible about the purpose and target audience for the video. Share background documents, marketing materials, product info, etc. to allow them to deeply understand the goals of the content. The more immersed the translators are in the context, the better job they can do conveying the full meaning.

Create a Style Guide

A style guide establishes clear guidelines on formatting, terminology, tone, and conventions specific to your brand. This ensures consistency across all translated materials. Identify your preferred terms and spellings for product names, processes, titles, and other specialized vocabulary. Outline your desired tone and rules for grammar, punctuation, capitalization, abbreviations, and more.

Maintaining Context

When translating business videos into another language, it's crucial to maintain the proper context so that viewers fully understand the content. This can be challenging when the original video contains references to culture-specific ideas, imagery, or lexicon.

A standard word-for-word translation often fails to convey the right context. For example, translating an American business video into Portuguese may require replacing references to "football" with "futebol" and "soccer" with "futebol americano." Additionally, imagery or statistics used in the original video may need to be adapted to be meaningful for the target audience.

Rather than standard translation, localization is key. Localization involves adapting the video content to maintain its relevance in the target locale. This includes adjusting culturally specific examples, using locally accepted terminology, and ensuring on-screen graphics make sense.

Professional translators skilled in localization can convey the right context by:

  • Researching the target locale's culture to understand nuanced differences
  • Finding equivalent local references and examples to replace unsuitable ones
  • Crafting translations that sound natural instead of word-for-word
  • Suggesting localized graphics and visuals to match the narration
  • Flagging elements that may confuse or mislead viewers from the translated locale

Properly localizing business videos requires going beyond direct translation to ensure the content remains contextually relevant, understandable, and effective across markets and cultures. This expertise in maintaining context sets professional localization services apart.

Managing Costs

Translating business videos into another language can be expensive, especially for a small business with limited resources. However, with careful planning and creativity, there are ways to manage costs without sacrificing quality.

Budgeting Factors

When budgeting for a video translation project, be sure to account for:

  • Word count - The number of words that need translation directly impacts the cost. Targeting concise scripts can help reduce volume.
  • Target languages - Some languages take up more space than others. Translating into German, for example, often results in 25% more text than the source.
  • Translator rates - Depending on experience level and language combinations, professional translator fees range widely. Research typical per-word rates.
  • Recording costs - If revoicing the narration, studio time and talent fees apply. Subtitling or on-screen text translation is generally more affordable.
  • Editing and formatting - Post-translation edits and text placement on the video can add hours of work. Seek bulk discounts.
  • Turnaround time - Rush orders often carry premium fees. Allow adequate lead time for best rates.

By understanding these factors, you can budget realistically. Get quotes from multiple vendors to compare options.

Lower-Cost Alternatives

Beyond the budgeting process, also consider these techniques to control costs:

  • Use free subtitling software for basic translations, then pay only for a transcript revision.
  • See if bilingual staff members are willing to translate as part of their job. Their familiarity with the content can outweigh any language skill gaps.
  • Barter services with other companies, translating their videos in exchange for free translations in your target language.
  • Use multilingual marketing students as interns or discounted translators. Many welcome the experience.
  • Consider crowdsourced translations through online marketplaces, with proper quality control.
  • Repurpose existing translated assets like product spec sheets or brochures to reduce new translation needs.

With careful planning and a resourceful approach, the high value that translated videos bring to global marketing and communications can be well worth the investment. Maintaining realistic budgets while tapping creative alternatives ensures affordability.

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