Your Complete Guide to Brochure Translation (2023)

Contents
Brochure Translation Guide and Tips

Whether you’re a B2C or B2B marketer, you’ve probably experienced the joys of creating brochures. Those multipage, information-heavy documents that customers love to flip through - it’s basically a magazine that’s all about your business.

As your products and services expand internationally, brochure translation becomes a top priority on your to-do list. You want to motivate your foreign customers to keep flipping through the pages so they are more and more convinced to buy.

Now there’s certainly plenty of talk about how printed collaterals are going obsolete because we’re living in a “digital world”. But even today, 90% of consumers still read brochures and catalogs sent to them.

In this guide, you’ll find out exactly how to structure your brochure translation workflow so that it always feels easy and productive. And by the end, you’ll find that producing brochures in multiple languages perfectly doesn’t mean sacrificing your time and money.

Overview

  1. Why is my brochure translation process moving so slowly?
  2. How to translate brochures with Redokun (4 Steps)
  3. Why use Redokun for brochure translation?

Why is my brochure translation process moving so slowly?

Most marketing teams are tired (and even scared) of brochure translation because it tends to monopolize their time and budget.

As a marketer who’s in charge of translating a brochure, you’ll either translate it yourself manually or you outsource the job to an agency, especially if you don’t know the target language.

Here’s where you start running into problems, which stack onto one another and lead to an expensive and joy-less workflow.

problems in brochure translation

1. Too dependent on manual processes when translating your brochure.

This is perhaps the biggest and most costly pitfall you can fall into when translating brochures. “Manual” brochure translation means that you copy-and-paste the text from the brochure, line by line, into a separate spreadsheet so you can share it with a translator or translate it yourself.

All of the translating work is done in the spreadsheet. When it’s complete, you will copy-and-paste the translations back into the software where you created the brochure. This could be in InDesign, Word, Publisher, etc.

And that’s just for one target language. Now imagine doing it for several languages, or for different brochure variations. You’ll have to restart the cycle over and over again.

Manual processes also create other types of issues in your brochure content.

2. Inconsistent translation of slogans, product names, taglines, and other repetitive segments.

When translation is done manually where each new brochure is treated as a one-off project, you’re unable to check quickly how you’ve translated a specific segment before. This leads to inconsistent translations of marketing copies that are crucial in sustaining your brand identity.

Elements like slogans, product names, and technical terms in your brochures should always be translated the same way to maintain the brand voice and show professionalism.

When brochure translation is done the manual way with a spreadsheet or with different vendors, the process is always removed from other translations you’ve done before. Simply because there’s no easy way to reference past projects.

As a result, a phrase or a name can be translated in several ways, which leads to disparities in your marketing terminologies and brand messaging across your brochure content. This might confuse potential customers who read your brochure.

3. Poor communication and workflow with your translation vendors.

When translating your brochure into multiple languages, you’re likely to outsource some of the work to freelancers or translation agencies. This is where things can get tricky.

Decentralization of your brochure translation workflow often leads to miscommunication, slow updates, and difficulties in project management.

Since brochures are design-heavy documents, different vendors will deliver different standards of work. What file format will you receive from them? Will you need to reconstruct the translated brochure or will they?

If they’re not able to, that’s another task for your long to-do list.

That’s why it’s important to have a good system in place that you can use to sustain your in-house translation workflow, as well as the work you will do with external vendors.

This system will set the procedures on how translation should be done and automate parts of the brochure translation process that are most time-consuming, such as maintaining the brochure layout and design elements.

4. High translation costs sending you over budget.

The need to hire translators is not the only source of high brochure translation costs. Manual processes and delayed product launches will also affect your bottomline.

Furthermore, you might need to pay extra for designers to work on adjusting the layout of the brochure to fit the translated content. These seemingly small expenses pile up eat away at your marketing budget.

It’s all very frustrating because you know that translating your brochures is going to help with global customer acquisition. But you can’t even propose it to your managers simply because, on paper, the processes and tools involved will send you over budget.

Is there a faster, easier, and cost-effective way to translate your brochures? Yes, there is. And it only takes one suitable translation software tool to start building a brochure translation workflow that gets even better as you translate more content.

In the next section, I’ll show you how to translate your brochure using a tool that automates the most tedious parts of brochure translation.

How to Translate Brochures Quickly & Consistently (4 Steps)

You can use a translation management system to avoid most of the common pitfalls in brochure translation. It’s a tool that effectively eliminates manual and decentralized translation work.

In this guide, we’ll be using Redokun, a translation management system that supports a variety of brochure file formats. While there are many types of brochure design software, you’ll be able to translate many common brochure file formats using Redokun, such as InDesign and Microsoft Word.

brochure translation steps
Important note: If you used InDesign to create your brochure, you need to export the InDesign document as an IDML file first. Here’s a guide on how to do it.

Step 1: Upload your brochure

How to upload a document in Redokun

Step 2: Select the target languages and assign your translators

  • Once your brochure is uploaded, you can set the source language and target language(s) for the project. Redokun supports more than 80 languages to meet your localization needs.
Set the target language in Redokun
  • Next, you can assign your preferred translators (including yourself) to each target language simply by entering their email address. They will receive an email to start translating the document on Redokun immediately.
Assigning translators in Redokun

Step 3: Translate the brochure online using Redokun's Wed Editor

Redokun automatically extracts and segments the text from your brochure file. Your translation team can focus solely on translating the content, rather than wasting time on manual extraction.

You and your team can translate the extracted text using Redokun’s Web Editor, where everyone can easily view:

  • The text that needs to be translated, organized into neat segments.
  • Page previews for the document to show where the translation will appear for better context.
  • Instant translation suggestions provided by machine translation tools, as well as a built-in database of any translations you’ve approved on Redokun before (known as Translation Memories).
Redokun translation interface preview
Your language team can leverage machine translation to speed up the translation process and boost translation accuracy.

Extra: Translate your brochure online or offline with Redokun

Translating your brochure online: Redokun opens in a browser so you don’t need to install any additional software to have it up and running. Communicate with your translation team in the comments section and track translation progress in real time.

Translating your brochure offline: Alternatively, you can use Redokun to export your brochure content into a spreadsheet or an XLIFF file. You can send this file to your translators who prefer using another translation tool.

This is an excellent choice if you prefer working with outside translation vendors for multiple language pairs. Once the text has been translated, simply import it back to Redokun to prep for the next step.

Step 4: Download the translated brochure with its original layout preserved

  • Once your team has finished translating the brochure, they should click Confirm Translation at the top right corner of the Web Editor. This prevents any unwanted edits to the file.
  • Now all you need to do is download the translated brochure. Redokun automatically generates a translated brochure file that keeps your original design and styles intact.
  • Go to the Document Detail page and click the green Download icon for the completed target language.
Download translated document from Redokun

And that’s it! Now you have the translated brochure you can send to international clients and partners.

Why Use Redokun for Brochure Translation?

As the project manager (even if you don’t actually go by this title), you need an effective system to hold your entire brochure translation operation together.

By making Redokun part of your localization workflow, you can greatly improve how your team creates multilingual brochures without having to introduce a complicated new tool.

With Redokun, you’ll get a powerful translation tool that’s incredibly easy to learn, even for busy marketing teams chasing tight deadlines.

brochure translation software benefits

1. Reduce translation costs and time

  • Preserve the layout of your brochures across all your target languages. No need to worry about design adjustments or pay extra (in time or money) to fix the layout.
  • Never have to pay to translate the same segment twice. When using Redokun, you can access the built-in AI translators and Translation Memories to automate parts of your brochure translations. This will significantly reduce your final cost.
  • Do less manual work. Forget about copy-pasting or creating endless spreadsheets for different language pairs. Redokun automates these tasks so you can focus your efforts on the most important thing: translating the contents of your document.

2. Manage your translation projects & people effectively

  • Collaborate with your marketing localization team in real time on one convenient platform. Perfect for remote teams!
  • Manage and track progress easily for each language pair and each document. Redokun structures your documentation flow so you can navigate your projects efficiently.
  • Simplify your brochure revision process. If you need to apply last-minute revisions to your brochure, you can implement them seamlessly with Redokun. Just upload the updated version of the original document, and your translators will get instant notification of any newly added content they need to translate. You won’t lose any progress on the text your team has already translated.

3. Translate with both in-house and external partners seamlessly

Redokun’s online platform gives you the flexibility to work with translators within or outside your company.

  • Invite as many collaborators as you need to work on a document in the Redokun Online Editor. You won’t need to use additional workflow management software to interact with everyone effectively.
  • Your team is notified instantly whenever there are important changes to the brochure translation project, such as document revisions or comments.
  • Even if your preferred translation vendors don’t use Redokun, you can export an exchange file from Redokun and share it with them. Once they send the translated file back to you, simply import it back to Redokun to restore the original formatting.
  • Have complete control over the translation process and your collaborators’ contributions. Assign different translators for each language pair on Redokun. Whether you work with in-house translators or external vendors, you can control their access to certain documents and assets of your company.

In short, Redokun optimizes your brochure translation workflow. Now you can put out more localized content, placing your company in the best position to succeed in your international market expansion strategy.

Summary

Brochure translation is necessary to scale your business globally. However, avoid translating your brochures the old way, which causes you to bleed out resources at many levels.

Try using a translation management system today so that translating content can be fun and easy again. Here’s a 14-day free trial of Redokun to help you get started.

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