Some of you may already have come across the term ‘transcreation’, but do you know what it is?

In short, ‘transcreation’ is creative translation for the advertising industry. Although it’s been around for a while, it is now that it’s becoming increasingly popular and demanded. So, whether you are a translator, a marketer or just curious, here are some key characteristics of this art:

  • It is a creative process. Translators become copywriters with a high level of creativity, an attractive (writing) style and a passion for words. They become ‘transcreators’.
  • Unlike translation, where the goal tends to be to inform, in transcreation the goals are to attract, to convince and, ultimately, to sell.
  • Reaching the target audience is more important than being faithful to the source text, so it’s very common to see a completely different text in the target language still evoking the same emotions as the text in the source language.
  • Cultural adaptation is a must if the brand really wants to reach the target audience as described above. TV ads of successful brands are a complete re-make in each country.
  • Every transcreation project comes with a brief that is as important as (if not more important than) the actual source text. This brief will contain descriptions of the brand, the target audience, the campaign and its purpose, the type of media (TV, banner, etc.) and other relevant concepts and requirements.
  • Transcreators are normally required to provide a few translation alternatives presented in order of preference, with a literal back-translation of each one into the source language and the reason why it was chosen.

Interesting? At Genuine Translations we are passionate about transcreation, it’s so much fun! See it yourself; the videos above are the English and Spanish versions of the same Redbull campaign, can you spot the differences?

As much as I dislike its taste, I want a Redbull right now!