Nowadays, artificial intelligence and machine translation are more and more considered as a cheap solution to cover translations needs. At the first glance, it may seem very promising: you can translate your material in thousands of languages for the cost of a software license. Incredible! But let’s have a look about the benefits you’d have in hiring a professional translator.
First, even if it can translate in a gazillion languages the computer is just a machine trained to replace sentences and words with others. A computer will never be able to give you any advice on how you should address your target audience, or determine if your communication fits with the culture of your target country. If your company wants to enter new markets abroad, this kind of advice is crucial. Your communication must fit with your target culture; otherwise your message will be lost and you won’t do any business. A professional translator is the best person to tell you if you can use your already existing material or if some sections need to be rewritten or adapted to fit the target audience better.
Then, it is very common that translators spot some mistakes or inconsistencies in the target text. Their feedback will be extremely useful for you to improve the quality of the source document. Not only do they spot spelling, or copy/past mistakes, but their questions also help you find the passages that can be improved in your copy. For example, if the translator asks for some clarifications on a point, it can be that the text is somehow ambiguous and you better change that so that your message is understood as you meant it on the first place. Some companies even wait to have the feedback from their translators before they send the source document to print to make sure that there are no typos left.
Thirdly, machines are getting better and better but there are still things that they cannot achieve, and SEO translation is one of them. There are so many parameters that only a human translator can do it in a proper and efficient way. Often, when companies build their website they think about SEO, of course, but when they send the content out for translation, they don’t get it optimized with keywords in their target language(s). Unfortunately, it results in a loss of traffic from their target markets. Once the translation is optimized for SEO in the target language(s) they start ranking better and clients find them easily.
To achieve results for your company in its international communication machine translation is not what you need. You need to develop a partnership with a professional translator that will stand by your side and help you understand better your target culture(s), improve your texts and above all grow your company abroad.
If you think that I can be a valuable asset to improve your international communication on the French-speaking markets, get in touch!