23 Questions to Help You Make a Good Transcreator Brief

Hand of person writing a transcreator brief

Written by Gwenydd Jones

Translator, translator trainer and copywriter

Are you trying to make a transcreator brief? Are you a transcreator who needs a better brief? Here are 23 questions to inspire you when you produce your transcreator brief. To help you get profitable results.

This article is an appendix to Lucy’s article “How to Get the Best Out of Your Transcreator: Mapping Out the Perfect Brief”. I recommend reading that article for an overview, then using this article to get into the nitty-gritty.

Transcreators need to understand your brand to help them come up with suitable ideas. This is about how your customers are going to perceive your product or service in the new culture. It’s essential to get this right to make sales.

1. Do you have a brand guide?

2. If not, can you direct the transcreator to any information about your brand available online?

3. What is your company mission?

4. What three adjectives describe your brand?

5. What is your brand tone of voice? (How do you speak to your customers? Do you teach them? Are you their friend? Do you make them laugh? Are you formal in your dealings with them? Do you need to generate authority?).

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6. Is this a new project or does it form part of an existing one?

7. Are there any reference documents available related to the project? Or other media, like images and videos?

8. Are there any documents available related to relevant old projects?

9. Do you have any previous transcreations or translations that can be used as reference?

10. What is the source text or texts?

11. What is the purpose of the transcreation? (Sell, raise brand awareness, increase web traffic, or something else).

12. In which countries are you going to use the transcreation?

13. In which media are you going to use the transcreation?

14. What is the product or service?

15. If the product is new to market, what information can you give the transcreator about it?

16. Who is the product or service for? (customer demographics such as age, gender, spending power, marital status, with or without children, interests, education and job). See this article about “A Slogan Transcreation Example and How It Affects Pricing” to understand why this is important.

17. What are the demographics of the target for the transcreation? Are they the same?

18. Why will customers buy the product or service?

19. What is the USP of the product or service in the current and new markets?

20. Do you need guidance as to whether images and non-verbal content are suitable for the new market?

21. What is the deadline?

22. What is your budget?

23. Is the project urgent to the extent that you’re prepared to pay a 25% surcharge for “priority boarding” to get it done? This article explains why it’s important to factor in the costs of urgent projects: “How to Defend Urgency Surcharges in Your Freelance Translation Services”.

You don’t want transcreators to have to guess at what you want. Lay it out for them, so they can make your goals their goals. You’re far more likely to get good results that way. Giving lots of information in your transcreator brief reduces the hours needed to complete the project. This is a win-win situation. The transcreator will work faster, which means the costs are lower for you.

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