Social Media is an important aspect of every business, but how do you go about when you have to address a multilingual population? There are things that work, mistakes to be avoided and key ways certain employees can help. If you are a multinational company or have a multi-lingual audience, you should think about who you are reaching on social media. Here are a few
Single Language Media Profiles
You may have varying audiences in destinations all of which are reached in different languages. If the content you want to share varies then you may want to have more than one social media account in different languages. Having a few single language accounts are ideal if you want to market and share content directly to those specifically who read this language. You will need people who are fluent and confident in using this language, so you may want to employ a social media manager fluent in that language for each account. For example, if you have a big customer base in the Netherlands then you’ll want to employ a person fluent in Dutch.
Remember to be culturally sensitive
If you decide to have a multi-lingual account, then you need to make sure your content is relevant and suitable for all cultures. Providing a message from a multi-national business must show respect for all of its customers, no matter where they are or what language they speak. Having a focus and marketing goal which includes cultural sensitivity will help to grow your business brand and become a trusted company. This is where multi-lingual employees are really useful. As not only will they have language knowledge but will also be able to advise on cultural issues too.
Watch out of bad translations
If you decide to use an electronic or online translate tool, that is great, but you need to be careful about literal translations. Some tools will translate word for word, which simply wont make sense in another language. You should get your translations checked to ensure they actually make sense. If they don’t you will lose followers and be unable to get your message across. Even if you just spot check your tool translations, you can keep an eye on how the content reads and make sure it is correct.
Filter your content and use keywords
Many social media formats will allow both users and marketers to filter content depending on language. This allows you to target customers by the main language they have chosen to see. By using key words and hashtags in your content relevant for your target audience you can make sure your posts are appropriate to those who are seeing them. In turn you will reach the right people in the right language and avoid annoying your customers by bombarding them with the same content in different languages or irrelevant posts for them.
Do you need to reach a multi-lingual population?
So, there are things you should definitely share, things you should not post and a middle ground depending on your target audience. Social media is a powerful tool and if used correctly it can make a massive difference to your business. By following these tips and managing your social media effectively you will reach the right people in the correct language and build your business in multiple destinations.