Does Your Business Have Mono?
It's important in the 21st century that healthy businesses don't have mono. We are not talking about mononucleosis, but rather MONOLINGUISTOSIS. OK, that word may not really exist. But the problem does.
If you are a business in today's world, the globe is your potential market.
Not aggressively taking information about your business to the world in more than one language is a missed opportunity if not a crucial error. Some businesses will survive with mono-linguistic habits. But they will not reach as many customers as they could if they reached out to customers who are not native English speakers.
Translation and localization is a whole lot of work and it can be an expensive process. Many companies may be asking the question "Is it really worth it to make our marketing and products appeal to more than one language population?"
The number of people who don't speak English as a second language throughout the world is startling.
While it may surprise some that a full 23 million Americans don't speak English as their native language, the numbers of people in France and Germany alone are over 140 million people! Add in the rest of Europe and you have approximately that many people again who are buying things, but only from companies that speak their language.
Assuming that you have the means to get supplies to people in other countries (enter USPS, DHL and FedEx), why wouldn't you want a market of approximately 60 million and then another of 80 million people to have access to your product?
In the absence of staff who can communicate in different languages, a company can at least make the effort to ensure they have printed material and media available in foreign languages for potential customers. Also having a welcome look for speakers of foreign languages at company locations and facilities will make people feel like they are accepted and understood.
One of the easiest ways to become a bilingual or multilingual company is to have your website translated. It is best to hire a professional translation company to do this for you, with a native speaker of the target language translating. You can have an introduction to your company including information about services and charges on the web. You can also post a "FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)" page in multiple languages. These pages can be translated and posted to inform customers who are more familiar with foreign languages about you in their own language.
You wouldn't embark on this without a plan and hope to succeed. You must work to make sure that people can see your product and see its value in their context.
Getting a professional translation company is probably a good first step. They can help you translate and localize most of your documents and information.
What are you waiting for? The world is waiting for your product; many producers and consumers just don't know it yet.