5 Considerations to Elevate Your Multicultural Marketing Campaigns

In today’s globalized world, marketing and communications professionals face the challenge of effectively reaching diverse audiences across different languages and cultures. A one-size-fits-all approach simply doesn’t cut it. Transcreation – the art of culturally resonant translation – is crucial for connecting with diverse demographics, building brand loyalty and driving business success in an increasingly interconnected world.

Quinn Thomas invited our transcreation partner, Creativo Consulting, to share tips to consider before embarking on a multicultural or multilingual campaign. Creativo has decades of experience in transcreation and cultural consulting. We have partnered for multiple years on projects, including PRSA Summit award-winning work in 2022 for a Hispanic outreach campaign on behalf of the Washington Health Benefit Exchange (WAHBE).

Transcreation: Beyond Translation

When developing a multicultural or multilingual campaign, it’s important to think about translation and transcreation along a spectrum. Depending on the needs and goals of the project, you must determine if its best suited for translation, transcreation or often times somewhere in between.

Here are five components to consider when determining where on the spectrum your project should land:

1. Nature of the Content

Evaluate the nature of the content to be adapted. If the content primarily consists of factual or technical information without creative or emotional elements, a straightforward translation may be sufficient. However, if the content involves marketing materials, advertising campaigns, slogans or creative storytelling, transcreation becomes essential to capture the intended impact.

2. Target Audience and Cultural Context

 Consider the target audience and their cultural context. If the content needs to resonate deeply with the audience, evoke emotions and establish a connection, transcreation is often the preferred approach. Transcreation also encompasses elements of authentic visual representation; everything from skin tones, hair, faces, fashion and general lifestyle is considered to better represent the target audience.

3. Brand Identity and Messaging

Assess the importance of maintaining brand identity and messaging consistency across different markets. If it’s vital to preserve the brand’s voice, values and tone while adapting to local markets then you may lean more towards transcreation. It allows for creative messaging adaptation while keeping the core brand identity consistent.

4. Marketing Goals and Objectives

Consider the project’s marketing goals and objectives. If the objective is to maximize brand impact, engagement and resonance with the target audience, transcreation is often the preferred choice. It allows teams to tailor content to suit the specific market. Transcreation considers everything from voices, accents, colors/color palettes, music and even more nuanced elements like background elements in video or still images and font choices to best meet the marketing goals and objectives.

5. Budget and Time Constraints

Assess the available budget and time constraints. Transcreation is generally a more involved and time-consuming process compared to translation, as it requires deeper cultural adaptation and creative input. If there are limitations on budget and time, and the content doesn’t require a high level of creativity, translation may be a more practical option.

By carefully considering these factors and in collaboration with experts on transcreation, communications teams can make informed decisions about how to navigate projects that will leave a lasting impression in consumers’ hearts and minds.