How to Write a Perfect Transcreation Brief

Writing a perfect transcreation brief is of significant importance as it helps obtain the right outcome for a transcreation project. A brief is a “map” of where exactly you want your transcreation to go. If your map is poorly written and organized, you could well end up in a place completely different from your intended destination. Similarly if your brief is scrappy, the transcreator has to try to figure out the directions and can therefore produce a transcreation that is not what you initially expected. This article explores the most effective way of “mapping” a perfect transcreation brief.

Transcreation Brief

What is a Perfect Transcreation Brief?

The essential objective of any transcreation project is to communicate the same information and achieve the desired response with the transcreated text as with the source text. The success of any transcreation project relies not only on the professionalism of the transcreator, but also on the quality of the transcreation brief you provide.

In spite of the fact that many transcreation companies will provide you with their own translation brief template for you to complete, you should be well aware that a transcreation brief always needs to determine the following:

  1. the medium,
  2. the style of writing,
  3. the target audience,
  4. and the subject matter.

A brief may also include other important information such as timelines, deadlines, and budgets, as well as reference materials. Creating a thorough brief will help you set your expectations towards the desired end results.

When it comes to transcreation briefs, it is important to bear in mind that the more information you provide the better the quality of your transcreation will be; however, a transcreation brief needs to be as neatly organized as possible, otherwise it will be confusing. It is best to start from the vague and move towards the more specific information, as set out in the following steps.

Step 1. Background

When it comes to creating a transcreation brief, try to begin the process with describing the background. What is the company? What is the brand? Is this a new product or just a campaign launch?

Background information sets the whole scene for the transcreation and helps the transcreator understand the context.

Step 2. Goals

The next step would be clarifying the goals. You should communicate to your transcreation services provider what you want to achieve with your project.

Step 3. Specifications

As mentioned earlier, a large part of a transcreation brief will be composed of important elements like media channel, target audience, subject matter expertise, source and target languages, format and volume of the copy.

When defining your target audience make sure to include basic information such as age, gender, ethnicity, religion, interests, and level of subject knowledge. This will help your transcreation services provider to understand how best to tailor the copy to suit the needs of the specific target audience.

Step 4. Tone of Voice

Bear in mind that some languages, such as Russian have formal and informal ways of addressing people, so in your transcreation brief you will need to determine whether you are addressing the audience using one or the other.

Transcreation services providers will also need to know what tone of voice you want them to use. In some cultural contexts, audiences may have different expectations for the tone of voice your company uses.

An experienced transcreation team should be able to advise you on this.

Step 5. Budget, Timelines, Deadlines, & Reference Materials

Last but not least will be mentioning the budget, timelines, deadlines, and reference materials. Be crystal clear regarding how much you are willing to pay, when you need the project to be complete, and make sure to supply any additional reference materials that may come in handy down the road.

In Conclusion

The most important thing to keep in mind is that where there are decisions to be made about the impact of the transcreated text on the eventual audience, it is important that these are made by your business rather than by the transcreation service provider. This is the essence of the transcreation brief: to ensure you stay in control of the messaging regardless of the language.

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