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Understanding the Hidden Costs of Localization

by Richard Harpham  |  
July 21, 2016
  |  1,509 views

Most organizations spend approximately 1-4% of their marketing budget on translation and localization services, depending on the size of the company and its scope of global operations.

That percentage may not seem like much, but when you consider that translation is a $38 billion industry, the costs add up. Multi-national corporations that reach 100+ countries can spend tens of millions of dollars on translation costs alone and still not reach all the regions needed to support their sales and marketing plans.

Without an intentional strategy in place, marketers usually make trade-offs and triage how many countries and languages they target.

However, there are now hard, revealing facts about the return on investment for high-quality localized content that translates into increased opportunities to engage new audiences, grow brand recognition and loyalty, and significantly boost revenue.

The Value of Localization


Companies of every size are always looking for ways to decrease the costs of developing a new customer. At the same time, more companies want to localize the ever-increasing amount of marketing content they create to drive demand in new markets.

Web content, emails, ebooks, and landing pages—any touchpoint you plan to create and deliver to multilingual markets—must be localized for the native language, local jargon, and cultural references. If they aren't localized, as much of 50% of your target audience simply ignores your message.

Localized content is becoming key to enhance top of funnel efforts. But companies often forget that core messages and offers are invaluable to regional sales teams hungry for relevant content to share with customers and prospects in their target markets.


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Richard Harpham is president and CEO of Cloudwords, a global marketing hub for executing business worldwide

LinkedIn: Richard Harpham  

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