There are differences between how a product is marketed in German and in English — something that might seem obvious in hindsight but which totally took me by surprise when I first started working on translating marketing collaterals from German to English.
One very obvious example — for the language geeks out there — is that marketing copy in German tends to use the passive voice much more than in English marketing. Shocking! Since it’s an almost* sacred rule that one simply does not use the passive voice in English copywriting.
But that is just one example. As a marketing professional, I also understand the importance of understanding a product before writing copy for it. So it is important to me that I don’t just translate any text given to me. Instead, I take the time to understand the product, translate the copy and make absolutely sure that nothing gets lost in the translation.
It’s a bit more work, sure, but this is a value-added service that is appreciated by clients such as Trelleborg Pipe Seals, whom I have worked with to translate a wide range of marketing materials ranging from press releases to case studies.
I have also worked on academic translations while working as a Research Assistant at the Friedrich-Alexander University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. You can see an example of that here. I have also helped companies translate Amazon product listings from English to German.
* “Almost” because many are beginning to realise that it’s a ridiculous rule. For more on this, I will refer you to this very entertaining piece by Dan Brotzel.