How to Localise Multimedia Content

by | Sep 15, 2021 | Content Strategy


Video and multimedia content consumption experienced a huge growth, especially following these passed 2 years of lockdowns and restrictions.

The development of video platforms is increasing: IGTV (Instagram TV), Video Pins by Pinterest, TikTok etc. Digital content became a tool to entertain, boost brands visibility and even to inform and educate. 

According to a study performed by CSA Research 65% of consumers prefer content in their native language. Not only, consumers expect content to be perfectly translated and localized.

What are the benefits of localising content?

  • Localizing content is key to making it appealing to specific customers, and to the target audience.
  • It improves its emotional impact, engaging on a deeper level with its viewers
  • It helps avoiding cultural inappropriateness

Here are some tips on how to localise multimedia content. 

  • Create universal content, that can be used across all markets.

Creating adaptable and suitable content can avoid the costs of re-creating content for specific markets.

  • Be selective of what existing content you want to localise.

It is pointless to invest in localising content that could result inappropriate or too difficult to localize. For example, it is usually smart to avoid localising content that includes animations that would not work in a different language. Also, it would be good not to use iconography that would not do justice to its message in another culture, or images containing people in specific environments to which other cultures would not be able to relate. 

  • Remember that most languages are “longer” than English. 

If the source content is in English, you should keep in mind that the text will expand when translated into another language. For example, Russian takes up to 40% more space!

  • Consider extra time for voice-over language expansion.

Just as for the point above, when recording source audio, allow extra time for voiceover by using pauses and a slower speaking pace. Doing so, you’ll create space for longer localised audio. 

  • Use timed audio scripts 

When giving the source copy to the translator, ensure it contains clear timings. This will help the translator remain in the time limits available for the localised copy.

  • Leaves pace for subtitles in your videos

If planning on using subtitles, makes sure to leave the screen free to accommodate them.

  • Prefer native-speaking reviewers

To achieve perfection, ensure you use native-speaking reviewers

  • Rely on a professional agency like Webzlab, where project managers will help you every step of the way!

For more info, don’t hesitate in contacting us!

Let us know if you have questions about any of the discussed content topics.