Marketing copy often has to fulfil several purposes: it needs to inform potential customers about a product, service or company, but it should also pique the reader’s curiosity, keep them reading and, ultimately, motivate them to buy. This is reflected in the writing. While aiming to provide factual information, the text also needs to be well-written and enjoyable to read. Form and content go hand in hand. Stylistic tools such as evocative language, cultural context, wit and humour, to name but a few, play an important role.
When translating these kinds of texts, I have to read between the lines and convey all key messages, including those that may not be explicit in the actual words of the text. An in-depth understanding of the language and culture is crucial here, as is thorough research of the products and services in question and the client’s company history and philosophy. In other words, I approach a translation in the same way as a copywriter who writes a piece of marketing copy. So, plenty of background research and creativity is needed to make sure the translated copy is just as interesting, stimulating and informative in German as your original text.
Marketing literature I translate:
- Company profiles
- White papers
- Client testimonials and case studies
- Web copy
- Press releases
- Email campaigns
When it comes to technical texts, their main purpose is clearly to convey information – to describe key characteristics, give instructions or even warn about health and safety risks. Of course, a translation still needs to be faithful to the original in form and style, but clarity and readability take priority. Often the text also has to conform with specific formal guidelines and regulations.
My challenge as a translator of these kinds of text is to be aware of the relevant formal and linguistic conventions, in both the source and the target language. Many of the technical documents I translate are subject to EU regulations or international industry standards and need to adhere to their respective terminology. In order to guarantee an accurate translation that is fit for purpose, I spend some time researching and familiarising myself with the subject matter and its specific terminology, as well as terminology use and tone of voice of the client company, thereby making sure that the translation is in keeping with existing literature and online resources.
Technical documents I work with:
- Product descriptions
- Technical specifications
- Safety data sheets
- Operating procedures
- Batch records
- Patent claims and descriptions
In addition to translation, I also offer the following services:
Checking of translations against the source text to ensure clarity and accuracy. Checking of German texts for logical flow and stylistic fluency. This also includes correcting any typos, misspellings or grammatical errors.
Before you upload your web copy, launch an email campaign or have your brochure or flyer printed, I can check your finalised designs to make sure nothing has been lost and no errors have crept in at the last minute. This includes checking for spelling and typographical errors, hyphenation and formatting. Please note, however, that this cannot replace a thorough check against the source text at an earlier, pre-design stage.
Glossaries and terminology databases
Consistent use of technical terms ensures clarity and brand recognition. I can assist you with the creation and maintenance of terminology databases or glossaries for your brand.
Creation of German style guides
A style guide helps maintain a strong brand identity in all your written communications, whether originated in German or translated from another language. I can create a German style guide for you, or check and update your existing style guide, to ensure consistency in those small details that are often overlooked, such as date and time formats.
With almost ten years of experience in managing complex translation projects, I can also assist you with multi-language translation projects and offer support in the planning and management of your project – tailored to your specific needs and requirements.