18 March 2022

Creativity on tap:
Multilingual copywriting and transcreation for the food and beverage industry.

Creativity on tap:<br/> <strong>Multilingual copywriting and transcreation for the food and beverage industry.</strong>

When you’re a global food and beverage company, you know that no two markets are exactly alike. While you may sell the same product in different territories, the way you market it may vary significantly.

It’s one of the reasons our client contracted Alpha to provide transcreation and multilingual copywriting services for its European country-specific marketing. This case study explores how we created a recipe for success.


The background

In the food and drink industry, selling fast-moving consumer goods in competitive markets relies on innovative marketing campaigns that appeal to targeted demographics. And, very often, the creative language of marketing uses inventive word play, idiomatic expressions, cultural context and an ear for the spoken vernacular.

That’s why it often doesn’t translate well into other languages using a literal “word-for-word” approach. In many cases, it is better to transcreate (producing a culturally adapted, more creative translation) or copywrite new materials from scratch.

Based on Alpha’s track record in these specialisms and after a successful test, in early 2020 our client contracted Alpha to work on a range of copywriting and transcreation projects on an ongoing basis.


The project

At the outset of any transcreation or multilingual copywriting project, our creative teams work in partnership with each client to really get under the skin of brand tone-of-voice and how it works for specific product ranges and campaigns.

In this case, we researched an extensive range of existing marketing materials in different target languages. This allowed us to create a clear and comprehensive style guide to be used by our copywriters and transcreators. In particular, it identified areas where more creative approaches would add value, and key terminology which should be strictly adhered to.

Flexibility was one of the key features of our relationship with this client. The work is ongoing but our client makes requests for new copywriting and transcreation on an ad hoc basis, usually around three or four times per month. Often with tight deadlines delivered at short notice, Alpha is always able to meet these requests because we have a dedicated in-house team which acts as a pool of client knowledge and project expertise.

Creativity has been another key attribute of this project’s success. Working in English, French, German and Italian, our transcreators and copywriters share ideas and approaches on a regular basis. When producing creative taglines, for example, an understanding of different cultural contexts can help bring new ideas to life in different linguistic settings.

And we don’t just have a “one size fits all” mentality. At Alpha we know just how subjective things like campaigns can be. That’s why our transcreators and copywriters always produce two or three versions of a slogan, so that our client can choose the right slogan for their brand. This also gives our linguists to throw ideas about until they are happy with the result. And it promotes good communication and collaboration practices with the client.

After all, for something like a slogan two brains are definitely better than one.


The results

At Alpha, the most important indicator of how we are performing is whether our clients continue to use us to meet their localization needs. With this food-and-beverage client, we continue to provide a range of copywriting and transcreation services across different regions and product ranges.

Our client has given us excellent feedback that has helped us to build a strong working relationship based on a partnership approach. Rigorous in our approach to quality yet flexible enough to respond to changing needs at a moment’s notice, our client trusts us to deliver. In terms of creative copywriting and transcreation, with Alpha, it’s as easy as turning on a tap.