Often when you least expect it you run across an answer to a question that you didn’t know that you had. This is the cast with NYA Communications – company that translates English into German and serves in other capacities in multilingual communications. The following is an interview that I had with Nicole Adams. If you’re serious about serving the European market…then the services that Nicole offers is worth serious consideration. Here’s a link to her website. NYA Communications
1. Having just got back from a trip to Geneva, I find it interesting that I now have the opportunity to interview a company that specializes in translations. From an introductory perspective, share what got you into this fascinating business.
After completing a Masters Degree in Contemporary English Language and Linguistics I initially worked in-house as multilingual account manager, German and English quality manager, and translation project manager in the UK. By chance I came across an ad from a translation agency looking for a freelance translator to translate a letter into German. I though – hey, I can do that! – and the rest is history. Later on I also became formally certified as a German/English translator.
I’ve been self-employed for almost 10 years now and wouldn’t change a thing. It’s very rewarding to help companies tap into new markets and grow their business through multilingual communication.
2. What is your background that makes you the expert in German to English or English to German translations?
Having been raised bilingually in German and English, I have always had a passion for languages and writing. I grew up speaking both English and German and have lived, worked, and/or studied in the US, Germany, the UK, and now Australia. What’s unique about me is that I have a perfect grasp of both German and English. This enables me to understand every nuance of the original document so that no piece of information gets lost or misinterpreted.
3. You offer several services – give us a brief explanation of those services.
My services range from translations between English and German to editing, proofreading, and localization for companies and agencies. NYA Communications’ services also include business mentoring, public speaking and workshops and helps organizations with business development, social media and computer-assisted translation (CAT) software training.
I specialize in documents from the domains of marketing, public relations, advertising, and business. The types of document I handle on a daily basis are press releases, sales presentations, websites, brochures, company magazines, corporate communications, newsletters, etc.
4. I notice that one service you offer is “Localization” – tell us how that might apply – for example if I hired you to “Localize” a news release.
When requesting a translation from,say, German to English, the client always needs to specify whether the target audience is the US or the UK (or another) market. An English text written for a UK audience might not work in the US, for example, because of the distinct cultural and linguistic differences between the two markets.
5. Also, with respect to Localization – you reference that this service is tailored for the UK or Australian market. But I thought you did German to English or the reverse…I’m confused. Help.
Although I mainly translate between German and English, I also offer monolingual English language services. Localization goes beyond mere translation but is rather transcreation, i.e. rewriting the text from scratch in the target language to convey the idea of the source text in terms the target reader understands. It also involves adapting things like the date format, currencies, units of measurement, etc. to the customary local forms in the country where the localized text is to be used (e.g. ’25 December 2012′ into ‘December 25, 2012’ or ‘metres’ to ‘feet’).
6. Since so many on the European continent are proficient in English – share three reasons that one would need the use of a translation service
Any company serious about expanding into foreign markets and growing their business must have their marketing collateral, website, and other documentation professionally translated. Customers only buy what they understand, and studies have shown that sales figures sky-rocket almost instantly once companies launch foreign-language versions of their websites.
A common misconception is that any bilingual intern can just compose press releases or in a foreign language, and that money can be saved when an in-house employee handles translations. This, however, is a false economy because poorly translated texts often end up costing businesses more than they would have paid for a professional translator the first time round. It is usually more costly to have a ‘bad’ translation revised than to hire an expert in the first place. It’s crucial for any business wanting to operate internationally to allocate an appropriate budget for translation and language services.
It’s undoubtedly true that many Europeans speak excellent English. But as Nelson Mandela once famously said: “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.”
7. I recently released a “Press Release” about my role in a meeting in Geneva. Would there be any value in releasing that in another language? If so, share where you see the value and in what format.
It depends who it is you’re targeting with the release and whose attention you want to attract. If you have clients in Switzerland, it would no doubt be beneficial to issue a media release in their local language(s). A release in the local language is also more likely to be picked up and published by sources your clients and/or your target group know and trust. This will in turn boost their trust in you and consolidate your position as a trusted partner.
Secondly, publishing a foreign-language press release will of course give you access to entire target markets who don’t speak English or don’t speak it sufficiently for business purposes. Having a translated media release will allow you to reach all those people in your target market that would have otherwise disregarded your English press release because they don’t understand it sufficiently well.
8. As an author there are many books that have been translated into another language. Would an author come to you for that service?
Authors seeking to translate their work would usually go through their publisher, who arranges for a translator. Having said that, it is not unheard of for authors to search for and approach translators directly. This is especially the case for small business owners publishing non-fiction books or e-books. Here, it can be very benefitial to have that direct contact between the translator and the author.
9. Share with my readers what are the top services that American’s seek from your company and why.
I work with clients all over the world, primarily in Europe. but I did notice a trend towards localization in the US market in 2012. Many requests by American companies this year were for localization services from US English into either UK or Australian English, i.e. adapting their website copy and collateral to these markets. Being based in Australia, the time zone is also a major plus because I can deliver urgent projects ‘over night’.
There are many language service providers out there, and many who work with German, but what makes me unique is that I’m a long-term partner to my clients and understand their business needs. I am a strong believer in CPD and regularly attend online and offline courses to keep my skills up to date, which naturally also benefits my clients. My business has recently won Gold in the 2012 Australian Business Quality Awards and achieved 19th place in the 2012 Top 100 Language Twitterers Competition. I’m also currently working on a book, Translation Means Business (to be published in early 2013), aimed at newly established solopreneurs in the language industry. This unique mix of services for clients and fellow translators, rooted in my passion for communication and business, is what makes my unique in this market segment.