19 October 2022

Guide to internationalizing your business

Categoria: Linguistic Services

Business internationalization is a process we facilitate through our language services, which is why we have written this brief guide on the subject.

Every company, even the smallest, aspires to expand its business into other markets, albeit in a variety of different ways. There are those that aim to sell products and/or services abroad, those that want to attract new investment, and those that prefer to start production locally.

In any case, business internationalization remains a very delicate strategy that requires thorough training and support from reliable partners.

How it works

Despite the risks associated with our changing, uncertain times, internationalization remains a goal for many businesses. However, before embarking on this path, it is important to know how to ensure a successful outcome.

The first stage consists of an internal analysis of the business, an essential requirement to understand whether you are really ready to take this step. The company must have enough economic and financial stability, a competitive product or service and, most importantly, the resources to support the necessary investments.

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After verifying the factors listed above, an analysis of the market and target country for expansion is carried out. This is an across-the-board analysis, covering geography, demographics, economics, culture and any other area that may impact the end goal. Based on the stated objective, market analysisstakeholder analysis, and/or an in-depth study of the legal and regulatory framework may also be necessary.

Finally we come to the last step, strategy planning, that is, planning the activities to implement in order to achieve the expected results, while always bearing the available resources in mind.

All the stages in this process require interfacing with people from other parts of the world, which is why it is crucial to use internationalization services to overcome language barriers.

Internationalization services

The wide range of internationalization services also includes translation and interpreting. Expanding to foreign markets means looking for local partners, launching advertising campaigns, and selling products. All of these activities require the company to have excellent knowledge and management of the local language.

Translation is required in a wide variety of circumstances. When forming relationships with local stakeholders or opening an office abroad, for example, legal and tax documents are often required to be submitted or stipulated. Legal translation and one of the accompanying services attesting to their authenticity or legal validity must therefore be used. In this case, the choice may fall on certified translation, sworn translation, legalization or apostille services, depending on the legal validity that needs to be attributed to the document and applicable regulations in the relevant country.

If, on the other hand, internationalization involves the sale of products and/or services, then the company will need to translate related material, starting with packaging or brochures.

Billboardspromotional videos and sponsored posts on social media are other marketing tools for which accurate, expert use of the local language is essential. In this case, the best option is to use transcreation, which combines the linguistic power of translation with the impact of advertising copywriting.

These days, since everything takes place online, we cannot overlook websites, another strategically important communication channel that must be meticulously managed to enhance your business. The decision to internationalize therefore requires you to also enhance your online showcase by supplementing the translation with a localization service. Localizing a website means aligning it with the ways in which users in the target market use it, which varies according to their different cultures. Dates, times, and currencies are just a few examples of cultural conventions that change from country to country, so skilful adaptation and adjustment is needed so that the target audience feels comfortable browsing the site.

However, in addition to translation and related services, a company that decides to internationalize also often needs interpreting, which must be tailored to circumstances and operational needs.

business meeting or working lunch with customers from another country are situations in which a liaison interpreter is invaluable. These interpreters have a perfect command of the languages involved, are trained specialists in the subject matter of the meeting, and possess oratory skills that enable them to successfully ensure that the business meeting fully satisfies their customer. Sometimes it only takes the right word at the right time to tip the scales.

Participation in a trade show or international event, on the other hand, requires the support of an interpreter specializing in consecutive or whispered interpreting (sometimes called by the French word chuchotage), i.e., an experienced mediator to work alongside the customer, enabling them to extensively communicate with their interlocutor without language barriers.

Expert use of the native language in the country chosen for business internationalization is certainly a winning move. Not only does it allow you to be understood correctly, but it is also a sign of respect to your interlocutors, resulting in reciprocal appreciation.

However, to ensure that you are communicating in the most appropriate manner, it is advisable to seek the guidance of a professional language services company.

Consulting

Given the strategic role played by communication within an internationalization strategy, a business should seek assistance from a professional translation agency.

At an agency like ours, consulting involves three key stages.

First, we receive the customer’s request and define their needs. Not everyone has in-depth knowledge of the wide range of existing types of translation and interpretation, so our job is to assist the customer in choosing the most suitable type in each case.

Once the language service has been identified and the quote with the timeline for implementation has been finalized, the next step is to manage the operational side. The job order is allocated to a project manager who then assigns the task to the most suitable team of professionals.

If it is a translation, the work cycle then concludes with a series of checks to ensure that it is entirely satisfactory. If, on the other hand, the customer requires interpreting, then the service involves selecting and deploying the most suitable team of interpreters for the purpose, as well as the respective support activities.

At Way2Global, we provide all the aforementioned language services in order to guide businesses in their internationalization process. Thanks to our 30 years’ experience, team of specialized native-speaking linguists, and certified work cycle, we deliver any job strictly within the agreed timelines.

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    Massimo Maffei is Chief Operating Officer of Way2Global, a women-led translation agency startup with a Benefit ethos. Massimo, who has over 14 years of experience in the language industry, has served as head of the Sales division, overseeing the company’s international relations by opening markets and establishing partnerships with customers from all over the world. Today, in addition to his commercial role, he also supervises Operations, managing the international relations that link Way2Global to clients and suppliers. Always ready for new challenges, Massimo keeps constantly abreast of current developments in our target sectors, first and foremost Life Sciences.
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