If you’re like me, you’ve probably heard of transcreation before, but don’t really know what it means exactly, especially compared – or opposed – to translation. Here’s an interesting post I found over at Trusted Translations about the topic that hopefully will shed some light on the two similar but different concepts. I personally think transcreation is a more extreme form of localization, but others may beg to differ. What is your opinion?
refers to the process of taking a message created in one language and
transporting it to another language. This word is not a synonym for
translation; so, what is the difference?
Transcreation is the transformation of a global message including not
only written content, but also visual designs and images. It also takes
into account the cultural context of a written communication, such as
in an advertisement, brochure, or website. The transcreation process
requires us to look at the message as a whole, later adapting it to the
audience it is directed towards while maintaining design elements in
their place so that the messages are consistent, especially when dealing
with international markets.
Why is it so important?
Transcreation is a relatively new term coined by the advertisement,
entertainment, and language industries. The origin of the term has to do
with the fact that it particularly refers to the translation as marketing material. Marketing
material is the only type of translation that has elements unique to
one culture. These elements include ideas, plays on words, cultural
references, design preferences, images, drawings, and colors and their
connotations. There are many subtle differences and much creativity that
go hand-in-hand with marketing
products and, just as its name indicates, the transcreation process
highlights the adaptation of all these elements in order to create a
meaningful message for a particular audience: trans + creation =
creation “through” or “beyond” creation.
During the transcreation process, those in charge of doing this work
can opt to reconstruct the way in which the information is presented in
order to make the inherent message of the marketing is more relevant to
it is directed to. The original content of the source language is used
as a base for the transcreated version in another language. It is
similar to asking someone to write something again in their own words.
One of the most widely known examples of transcreation is the
Spiderman comic in India, in which the American boy in the original is
recreated into a young Indian boy named Pavitr Pabhakar (a play on words
based on the name Peter Parker). All elements of the original
narration were also recreated and replaced to give it an Indian context;
even Spiderman’s suit was altered in order to adjust it to the cultural
tastes and norms of India.
If you are trying to diminish the distance between the connections
between different countries and cultures in order to gain a worldwide
audience, then transcreation may be a good option for your business.