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How to Choose Whom You Hire for Content Creation?

By | Business, Chicago, Content creation, customer service, Ethics, Montreal, New York, News, San Francisco, Social Media | No Comments

Content is in today’s day and age, gold. With so much of our personal and professional lives being “connected” and relying on a “search, find and buy” shopper experience, content drives the virtual shopping cart.

A survey by Forbes states that 82% of shoppers research online before buying, with a third of those respondents believing their website brings people to physical stores. Irrespective of whether you have a goods or a service-based business, 82% of consumers performing online research prior to buying (anything) is a big, big number.

What this suggests is that web content, the words which appear on your site and are a major part of Google’s ranking algorithm, is of critical importance to getting potential customers to your website.

So, is throwing a bunch of keywords on your website ok? Well, it’s a little bit more complex than that. There’s a whole slew of protocols and best practices you must respect, to not get your site banned by search engines.

At the core, it all comes down to the legitimacy of your website… and its content, which is why selecting a legitimate content provider is important.

But how do you choose a legitimate content provider?

  • Your content provider should be familiar with SEO best practices if your content is destined for online use;
  • They should provide a project manager to manage the content creation
  • They should understand the use of your SEO objectives, personas and targeted content;
  • They should also produce “original” content. Meaning in short, authored from scratch;
  • They should offer revisions;
  • They should offer interview possibilities with subject matter experts.
  • Some providers offer the management of publishing or pushing the content.
  • You should be able to communicate with the company providing the service. (i.e. not just by email)

Considering what content providers offer, they will unlikely offer this for a few cents a word. So be wary of the cheap, attractive, and shiny deals.

Happy content creation!


News Item: Bryan Montpetit, CEO of MontLingo Language Services, Inc. appointed to Board of Directors for ALC

By | Business, Chicago, Content creation, customer service, Ethics, Localization, Montreal, MTPE, New York, News, San Francisco, Social Media, Toronto, Translation | No Comments

Miami, Florida –  20th May 2017 – Bryan Montpetit, CEO of MontLingo Language Services, Inc. was officially appointed to the Board of Directors of the Association of Language Companies (ALC) by way of vote.

For more information, please visit www.alcus.org

Facebook for Business – Worth Our Time?

By | Business, Content creation, customer service, Social Media | No Comments

Facebook for Business – Worth Our Time?

Using social media seems like a great way to improve your business. After all, reaching a huge number of people quickly and easily is something everyone wants, right? And Facebook is certainly a good option for that, with its huge user base. But is it all worth our time?

According to a recent study, there are almost 2 billion monthly active Facebook users, and you don’t need to be an expert to figure out that’s a lot. More specifically, a lot of potential clients for you. But let’s take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of using Facebook for business, and see what works best for you.

The wickedly awesome, super cool facts (good)

First of all, starting a Facebook page is simple, and most importantly – it’s free. You don’t have to worry about the same things you would when creating a dedicated website. You can pay to have your page promoted in the form of an ad, and while doing so, you can choose which demographic groups you want to address. All of the targeting is already handled by Facebook, you just have to select what you want.

Another positive thing about using Facebook for business is that you can easily tell how your page is doing. Namely, you can see how many people like it, and how many are subscribed to it. Once a user likes your page, it will then appear on their friends’ newsfeeds as well, so it can potentially bring even more clients to your business. This snowball effect is certainly one of the biggest allures of using Facebook for business.

The variety of media you can use on a Facebook page is another advantage. You can post videos, infographics, images, or simply text – whatever works best for you and your business. This level of customization means that the visitors to your Facebook page won’t be tire and will increase engagement.

The meh facts (bad)

As they say, there are two sides to every coin, so using Facebook might not always be such a good idea. There are some disadvantages to using this approach, and one of them is interacting with Facebook users who don’t like or comment. If people don’t actually subscribe to your page, they won’t be able to receive any notifications or news from your page. What’s more, they can choose to unfollow or unsubscribe from posts, so you won’t always be reaching your audience in the most efficient way.

Spam is also something you need to watch out for. You might occasionally get spam links and irrelevant comments, and that can discourage actual visitors to leave comments and interact with your page.

Using Facebook for business might be easy in terms of creating a profile and managing it, but you’re still subject to various changes of rules and policies on Facebook. If you make a small mistake (either on purpose or accidentally), your page could easily get deleted.

So, is it a smart idea to use Facebook for business? It depends. It seems so since a majority of companies are doing exactly that. But think of it as more of an addition to your online presence, instead of relying solely on it, and your business will improve in no time.



Translation and Morally Sensitive Topics

By | Business, Content creation, customer service, Ethics, Translation | No Comments
Sensitive Topics, Morals, and Translation

A big prospect wants to hire you for a major project. They pay well and have a fair deadline. Music to your ears. But what happens if the nature of the content makes you uneasy, or if they have been involved in a major tax scandal or used unethical advertising tactics and their name is stained all over the media? Do you work with them or not?

For independent translators, small agencies, and new translators who are only getting started, and who are faced with stiff competition from established, long-standing translators and agencies, the temptation to accept any project and relinquish any responsibility can be hard to resist.

“It’s their content, not ours,” it can be argued. But it’s important to think the matter through before making up your mind.

A Few Scenarios to Consider

Translators do not always share the same values and ethical code as their clients. The nature of the content that needs to be translated, or the values of the individual or organization for whom it is intended, may conflict with the values and moral code the translation company or the translator themselves. While companies cannot control what clients contact them or request quotes, they can always choose whom to work for.

Here are a few scenarios that convey this dilemma:

  • A company that pollutes our oceans or has a bad environmental track record in the media requests translations for new chemical products
  • A pharmaceutical company that has been involved in a media scandal because of abusive animal testing tactics needs to translate public-friendly marketing material to overcome the scandal
  • A conglomerate known for unfair workplace policies, child labour and workplace discrimination ask for content localization to enable expansion to new regions
  • A group that uses incendiary tactics to attract attention, insulting certain races, groups or members of the community, needs to translate a blog or website to help promote their message

Ethical issues related to translation projects can create a disabling tension for any associated translation provider, reducing their motivation and productivity. In the case of agencies, it can even give rise to internal conflicts, where one or more members of the team may not agree to work on a specific project for ethical reasons.

Is it getting hot in here?

Ethical Guidelines – The Only Solution

It is important for translators and translation companies to have a set of ethical guidelines in place to which they can refer when needed. These guidelines have to answer essential questions such as:

  • Do we work with clients who have different values than our own?
  • Do we endorse companies that pollute the environment?
  • Do we collaborate with clients who have been involved in scandals?
  • Do we translate content for companies or individuals with a poor or questionable online reputation?
  • Do we say yes to any project, or use a selective approach to choosing our work?

If we refuse certain projects, how do we do it so that we do not offend clients or cause resentment?

Every translation company may answer these questions differently. But it is crucial that they answer them nevertheless. Because having clear ethical principles and adhering to them is one of the key factors that sets apart professional and respected translation companies from the rest.

Let’s face it, you as a translator or company owner may be lucky enough to never have faced a situation like this, but the moment you are, you’ll be happy to have had the foresight to consider your positions, document your desired behaviours and clearly make it known to yourself and your team, where you stand should it arise.

What’s your take?

Ever been faced with questionable clients or prospects?

We’d love to hear about it.