The internet has grown by leaps and bounds in the past 10 years. Because of this digital evolution, we now have infinite space for all forms of digital content, like videos, social media platforms, games, and more. As the world of digital content becomes over-saturated across the globe, creators of this content need to ensure their content is entertaining, educational, and informative. If your digital content does not meet these markers, then you may struggle to grab your audience’s attention.
However, if you’re a global brand creating multimedia content, there’s another step you need to consider. You need to focus on how to leverage and localize your content. It’s all well and good if your content is engaging, but if it’s not translated or localized for your desired markets, your content will get lost in translation.
Multimedia is changing the game in the world of marketing, digital advertising, and eLearning. And it’s the organizations that are creating localized multimedia channels to reach virtual, local audiences that are reaping the rewards.
The Global Domination Of Video Content
When looking for engaging digital content, global users want and expect to see more than just pictures and words. This form of static content does not engage the younger generations like Gen Z.
The rise of social media, smartphones, and apps like TikTok has eradicated the need for attention and increased our desire for instant gratification; and short snappy videos can provide such gratification. According to techjury, video is the preferred source of information for 66% of its users, which could explain why, on average, users spend 3.7 hours on their phones and other devices.
To put our love of video into a global perspective, today over 500 million people actively watch videos on Facebook daily. These statistics show how powerful video content can be for your brand when used correctly.
The Rise Of Multilingual eLearning Content
As well as focusing our attention on video content, we also need to pay attention to the growing demand for eLearning content. The need for face-to-face learning has decreased over the past few years and the global pandemic certainly accelerated the need for remote training, especially for global brands.
The worldwide eLearning market is estimated to be worth US$325 billion by 2025, and this colossal figure just proves that remote training is gaining a great deal of traction. However, while creating branded video content for your social media feed can be quite simple, producing effective virtual training content can be difficult…
Creating Engaging eLearning Content
When creating effective eLearning content, we must think beyond simple text and pictures, as these will not engage the remote learner. You need to think about implementing smart strategies for your eLearning content, with the focus on motivating your learners and increasing their overall interaction and satisfaction with your content.
To start with, you can think about including videos. As previously mentioned, videos are a great way to engage a digital audience. You could create short, digestible, and informative videos that feature staff members or experts in your chosen field. A video that is two hours can seem incredibly daunting and may put off users. We would advise splitting long content into smaller chunks and creating modules for each section.
Gamification is another excellent strategy. Online gaming has become a universal phenomenon, and games like Fornite, GTA, Fifa, and many more attract millions of users across the globe. The love of online gaming is showing no signs of decreasing; by 2025 the online gaming market is projected to be worth $46.7 billion. It’s worth leaning into your users’ love of gaming and creating some online eLearning games of your own.
Gamification is the practice of applying gaming formats to encourage participation and engagement in eLearning activities. The games you create don’t have to be complicated. For example, you could create an online quiz that includes motivational badges or rewards, multiplayer games, guided, visual tour games, and more.
When creating these forms of eLearning content, be sure that the content you use is culturally appropriate for local audiences. For example, including content focused on cultural holidays like Christmas or Halloween may work for some of your users, but may not work for those who do not celebrate these holidays for religious or cultural reasons. So, you need to be mindful of the cultural differences of all your users and design multimedia content that is relatable.
Why You Should Localize eLearning Content
Following on nicely from our last point, users now expect multimedia content to be seamlessly translated and localized. And according to CSA Research, 65% of consumers prefer content in their native language, which should come as no surprise.
When translating and localizing eLearning content, there are numerous challenges and obstacles to overcome. We’ve come up with 6 ways to help to create seamless localized eLearning content that can engage a global audience.
1. Be Wary Of Language Expansion
Most languages are around 15% longer than English, and languages such as Russian can take up to 40% more space on a page. So, if your original source has been written or spoken in English, you need to consider that this text and audio will expand when translated.
When you are in the production stage of integrating text boxes, graphics, or audio, we would advise considering the length of translation into account.
2. Content Should Be Universal
If you create content that is relevant to all your target audiences, then you will save a great deal of time and money and you will avoid the need to source culturally specific content.
3. All Content Needs To Be Finalized First
Failure to provide clean, final content before you begin the process of localization will cost you. Ensuring you have completed source files will save time and money.
“Consider localization from the outset, including the possibilities of text expansion (Russian takes up 40% more space than English), how subtitles may fit, whether motion graphics can easily have text edited, and how a voice-over can be easily synced to the source material.” – Michael Anderson, Senior Multimedia Engineer, Welocalize
4. Dedicate Time To Voice-Over Language Expansion
It’s worth allocating extra time for voice-over language expansion if you decide to record source audio. Language expansion can include using a slower speaking pace or long pauses. These techniques provide audio space in your videos and can accommodate audio for languages that are longer than your primary language.
5. Timed Audio Scripts Need To Be Timed
You should pass these translation timings to your translator to make them aware of the limits available to localize your audio clips. If the translation runs on for longer than the original audio, the voice artists can increase their speaking pace to ensure their speech runs for the same length of time. If the voice artist is unable to do this, you could extend static scenes or integrate additional video edits to extend the length of the video.
6. Carefully Consider Graphics, Animations, And Subtitles
Certain fonts, for example, will be incredibly difficult to read in certain languages, and some graphics or pictures may be either irrelevant or potentially offensive in certain cultures. You need to think about these details at the content development stage.
In this ever-evolving digital age, you need to ensure your online content is both educational and entertaining. Otherwise, it may never be seen. For those of you who are a part of a global brand, the need to leverage and localize multimedia content is paramount. And before you take the steps toward translating and localizing your content, you need to understand the complex processes to ensure your users enjoy a seamless, localized experience.
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