03/19/2014 Leave a comment
A survey conducted by Cloudwords at Content Marketing World 2013 revealed that a whopping 69% of global marketers don’t have any insight into their current translation spend.
That’s not surprising, considering localization of marketing content is often a highly decentralized process in many global organizations, which creates inefficiencies in both time and money spent on globalization of marketing programs. For example, a corporate team might hold the purse strings, but leave regional teams to manage vendors and translation projects. This structure, or lack thereof, leaves marketers in the dark when it comes to insight into how much they actually spend on localization (including payments to translation vendors as well as employee time spent managing the projects), how efficient their process is when it comes to delivering content to market, and whether multilingual assets, such as translation memory, are being leveraged.
How can companies spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on localizing marketing content each year (much more for global enterprise organizations, which can reach upwards of tens of millions of dollars), yet have no idea whether they are getting a good return on their investment?
Entering new markets successfully—and maintaining market share in existing markets—requires ongoing analysis of the marketing budget and metrics to know whether you’re spending money wisely to reach the target markets and audiences that matter most to your company, or throwing it away. Analysis of your localization process and spend should be a priority as well. You might be surprised how many global companies are translating content into the top five or 10 languages because they think that’s the best way to reach the most customers. Do they have market share in Brazil? If not, why are they translating into Portuguese?
In addition to better understanding which languages you should be investing in, you need insight into how efficient your localization process is, or isn’t. How long does it take to turn around a simple localization project, such as an email campaign? What about a more complex project, like an entire website? An inefficient localization process significantly impacts your bottom line. Using outdated tools and processes to manage localization projects costs valuable employee hours as they try to keep track of multiple projects via email or FTP sites. Bottlenecks in the process, such as delays in the review phase, reduce productivity, increase project turnaround times, and effect critical go-to-market timelines. A delay in getting content to market to reach target audiences translates into missed revenue opportunities.
To get a better idea of how to measure your localization spend and ROI, we suggest the following metrics:
- Spend per language
- Spend by content type
- Leverage of Translation Memory
- Project completion time
- Identification of bottlenecks in the localization process
To increase productivity and maximize investments, global marketers need better visibility into their localization process. Cloudwords offers advanced analytics to help you monitor your localization spend, time-to-market efficiencies, and translation memory utilization in real time. You can monitor your translation spend by content source, department, language, vendor and more. As a result, you can better understand your translation process, see the evolution and ROI of your translation memory over time, and track the speed of globalization efforts by market.