RECAP: March Meeting

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The March meeting which featured Gabriela Lemoine, the CEO of Hispano Language Advisory, was well attended.

Ms. Lemoine gave a presentation on Transcreation and Translation for Marketing. This was the same presentation that she gave at last year’s ATA conference which was so well received that it was scheduled twice. NYCT members who missed the conference were fortunate to be able to catch her presentation at the meeting.

The presentation started with a look at four videos of the same advertiser in different countries. Besides the language changes there were other subtle and not so subtle differences in the various commercial spots. Ms. Lemoine explained why the spots were tweaked and how they were all successful in their respective countries while still retaining the same branding.

Examples were discussed from companies such as McDonald’s Coca-Cola and Puma. A breakfast commercial from McDonald’s was shown that while a hit here in the United States would have no meaning in some Latin American countries simply because the breakfast foods presented in the commercial were not typical breakfast foods for the countries discussed. Simple things can make a significant impact or not.

There were some campaigns that worked well, some that didn’t work at all and others that were able to be adapted and fixed midstream and turned into a successful campaign.


Ms. Lemoine reminded the audience that the purpose of marketing copy is to persuade or to sell. It must get the viewer to have a reaction and make a move. The source text must equal the target cultural response.

All translators working in transcreation should be excellent writers in the target language. Being a translator is not enough; the culture of the target audience needs to be understood inside and out. A background in marketing is helpful but not having one does not impede a translator from specializing in the field.

She then touched upon ISO standards and took questions from the audience about pay scales, obtaining work in the specialization and working with either direct clients or agencies.

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