When companies design brochures or forms for translation, they often forget a critical element: white space. It’s very important to keep empty space on your original pages. That’s because most common languages require far more words than English to express the same concepts.
In general, 20% more space is needed for translations into French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Tagalog and Vietnamese; 10% more is needed for translations into German, Russian and sometimes Japanese; and around 10% less is needed for translations into Chinese, Korean and Arabic.
If your text is extremely tight in your file, where are these extra words to go? May we use additional pages? Not if you have a fixed one-page form, for example. May we shrink the font or point size? Not if you want your readers to read without needing special glasses or squinting. Should we cut out some (English) text so that the remaining expanded translation will fit on the fixed page? Sometimes that method is necessary for video subtitles.
This language expansion also applies to BOOKS, a specialization in which we also excel. Book translations can be done in two ways:
1. AI only which usually still requires formatting to accommodate language expansion; or
2. AI with human professional editing: One or two translators who:
· are native speakers and therefore know expressions, nuances, and cultural adaptation;
· have Master’s level or equivalent degrees in translation or linguistics;
· have over ten years’ ongoing experience (which means they are not amateurs or part-timers); and
· specialize in your subject terminology in both the source and the desired language(s).
The first choice is prone to mistakes while the second choice obviously guarantees our A+ accuracy.
Using translators with expertise in children’s literature, novels, mysteries, business or sci-fi is the key to doing these book projects correctly. And we are glad to translate up to five test pages at no charge to ensure your satisfaction with the end result.
If you are self-publishing, the expanded page count for the additional translated words generally won’t matter. But if you are using a traditional publisher, those extra pages add to the production cost which may reduce the author’s royalties.
And finally, translations – whether for brochures, forms or books – are only as good as the original language (and punctuation) in which they are written. If you want your translations to be accurate, it is important NOT to rely on amateurs or non-native speakers to convey your message …. as these delightful signs demonstrate:
1. “Please do not put heavy item on the copy machine. Thank you for your copulation.”
2. “Caution Slow Kids on Road with No Shoulders Dead End.”
3. “Anal egg hunt. April 12th 10am. Free Family Event.”
Instead, to get your brochures, forms, books, contracts, videos, websites or any other communication translated and formatted correctly in 120 languages based on 30+ years of expertise, please contact the professionals at Auerbach International for a free consultation.