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At Comms Multilingual, we have a great deal of experience in the translation and transcreation of marketing materials.

You can’t just take a marketing concept in one language and simply translate it into another language. That concept may have no meaning in the target language or it may prove to be an embarrassment for you and your organisation.

What is Transcreation?

Transcreation is a type of creative translation used for advertising and marketing materials.

The term is used to describe the way that text in one language is adapted and localised into another. The aim is to take your core message and recreate it so that it is meaningful and acceptable in another language and to another culture, whilst staying true to your company’s style guidelines.

Project Briefs

We recommend preparing a project brief so that the transcreators are fully aware of the message, the target audience and the level of formality required, among other things.

Transcreation can make a real difference to the success or failure of a project in the target market. Some items will require more transcreation than others.

For example, highly technical information will require very little transcreation, whereas marketing materials will require a lot of adaptation to make it really appeal to the target audience.

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Avoid Embarrassment

Even the biggest companies can make mistakes. The name Coca-Cola in China was first rendered as Ke-kou-ke-la. Unfortunately, the Coke company did not discover until after thousands of signs had been printed by their vendors that the phrase means “bite the wax tadpole” or “female horse stuffed with wax”, depending on the dialect.

For its own materials, Coke had to research 40,000 Chinese characters and found a close phonetic equivalent, “ko-kou-ko-le,” which can be loosely translated as “happiness in the mouth.”

Hints & Tips

We recommend that marketing materials are first translated and proofread into the target language.

Then, the copywriters can go through the translation from a cultural perspective, adapting and localising it for the target audience and turning it into proper “marketing speak”.


We can handle a wide variety of formats, including Adobe InDesign, Quark XPress, Adobe Illustrator, InPage, PageMaker, Flash and Freehand, on both Mac and PC platforms. We also work with all the Microsoft software.

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