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Multimedia and Video Translation: 7 Considerations

Multimedia and Video Translation: 7 ConsiderationsMore and more businesses are turning to multimedia, such as videos and eLearning modules, to educate, inform and train their customers and employees. Movie clips and other multimedia are easy to consume since they can be viewed at people’s leisure and they’re often quite entertaining. The tools used to create the content have evolved to include many options, which allow companies to present their brands in new and innovative ways.

Translating and localizing multimedia content is a great way to reach global customers as well. However, the content has to be customized for a particular global audience, as not all content, messaging or images are appropriate for every audience. This is where a translation company that offers specialized video and multimedia translation and localization services can really help businesses. Here at Net-Translators, we understand global audiences and we have the technical expertise to produce high-quality, accurate multimedia files in over 60 languages.

Before you begin a project, it’s important to consider how the options you chose to create multimedia files, such as adding on-screen text to your video, will affect localization. Many of the options will affect the video tempo, and the flow and speed of content. Here’s a list of seven considerations with your multimedia project.

#1 Translators Need a Transcript

The translators need a transcript of the movie or eLearning module. If one isn’t available, this is a service we can provide.

#2 Consider Timing Options

In many cases, the narrator directly speaks to the content on the screen. In these cases, the localized versions will have to adapt and sync to the events in the video or clip. Generally this shouldn’t be an issue; however, sometimes the timed segment isn’t long enough for the localized version since it may take longer to record due to the nature of the language. In this case, we’ll provide recommendations on how to fit the localized content into the time frame.

#3 Hearing-impaired Option

Some eLearning tools have a built-in caption/subtitle option. If you use this option, the captions/subtitles may get sent to translation automatically, depending on the tool, unless the customer doesn’t want to include it. If the captions are timed and synched to the audio, we’ll adjust this for the localized version. If the captions are simply written in the slide where the user can read them, then we don’t need to plan the timing.

#4 Subtitling Option

If you choose to add translated subtitles to your file, they need to be localized. We’ll localize the transcription that comes from the Voice-over (VO) and then prepare it for the open/closed captions option. Our localization engineers will synchronize the captions with the spoken recording. Always make sure to keep a backup of the original materials so that we can use them for the localized versions.

#5 Selecting Voice-over Talent

You can provide us with requirements for VO professionals, so think about the characteristics (age, male or female, certain quirks, etc.) that you want to have. Based on your criteria, we’ll present you with options of VO specialists and you can choose which one you want.

#6 Visuals Need to Be Localized

Some types of multimedia files like eLearning modules, have many visuals, such as illustrations, graphics, photo captions or animations. Any text on visuals should be localized. The text needs to be separate from the visual so we can translate it. If it isn’t, we can work with it, but it may add time and/or expense to the project.

#7 Multimedia Translation and Localization Services

After localizing and placing all the content where it needs to be, we’ll test each language version to make sure all the moving pieces are in the right place.

Understanding the factors that will affect localization before you start your project will make the localization process go more smoothly. If you have any questions about what we’ve suggested, please reach out to one of our global offices today and we’d be happy to help you.

David Sommer

For roughly a decade I have been helping people around the world gain access to the world's leading products and services by making them accessible in their native language. My previous experience with a national standards institute taught me how to achieve quality and present the results.  Having started at Net-Translators as a Localization Project Manager winding up a Senior Localization Manager, and finally to my current position as Director of Strategic Operations, I have learned much about the industry, but more importantly, I have focused continually on how I can improve processes and deliverables in a theoretical as well as practical manner. I am constantly on the lookout to learn more about our industry and implement new ideas.


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