The Challenges of Voice Over Translation

August 14, 2022by Future Trans
3 MIN READ
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Localization is at the core of getting your message out to the world. When creating a brand, the whole point is to make it visible to as many people as possible. But that is only possible if your brand is easily understandable by many, and the key to that is localization. Localizing websites and content seems pretty straightforward, but what about videos? What happens then?

Well, that’s when voice over translation comes in. Voice over translation is more present than you would think – in fact, $4.4 billion is spent on voice over translation yearly. However, its popularity doesn’t mean it is an easy feat. There is actually a considerable set of challenges you may encounter when facing voice over translation. So, without further ado, let’s look into the challenges of voice over translation and gain some powerful insight on how to overcome them!

The Benefits of Voice Over Translation

In today’s utterly digital world, there is little choice left other than offering multilingual content to your audience. Voice over translation has proven to be more effective than subtitling, by preventing viewers from having to focus all of their energy on reading words on a screen. Their entire mind space is therefore dedicated to understanding the core messaging of your video content.

Using a translated voice over makes it so much more likely that you will be able to connect with your audience. In a recent study, 55% of consumers stated that they would always prefer buying a product if the information supplied is in their native language. People won’t buy what they can’t understand, so investing in voice over translation really is crucial if you want your business to scale and grow worldwide.

The Different Types of Voice Over Translation

There are several different types of voice over translation that you may choose to use for different reasons. Let’s go through them.

Lip-syncing or Dubbing

When the original audio is completely replaced by a recorded translation, that is called dubbing. This one is tricky because it has to be completely synchronized with the movement of actors’ lips on screen. You’ll also have to think about recording other bodily sounds such as sneezes, chewing noises and yawns. It is the most effective way to translate voice overs but it takes skill and can be more expensive.

Voice Replacement

Voice replacement is a simpler, more stripped down version of dubbing, whereby the volume of the on-screen dialogue is turned down and the translated voice over is placed on top.

The Instructional Style

This is when a voice actor explains what is happening on screen, without any original audio.

The UN Style

The UN style is often used for news reports and lets the original sound pass through. You may have seen this method in interviews or documentaries because it still shows the authentic voice of the original speaker.

The Challenges of Voice Over Translation

Voice over translation has some very specific challenges, depending on which method you choose and what your objectives are. Let’s look into a few.

Dubbing or Lip Syncing

Because the original dialogue is entirely removed from the original audio, the translation needs to match the exact movements of the actors’ lips. That’s why dubbing or lip-syncing takes a lot of skill. The challenge is that if it’s not done right, it can look cheap and make viewers click away from the content.

Production Time and Cost

Voice over translation can get pretty costly if you lose control of it. It requires way more resources than most other types of language services, so you’ll need a truly streamlined production workflow if you want to control costs and time spent. We always advise to go for an agency, which has existing processes in place, if you want voice over translation done truly right.

Controlling Quality

You have to devote resources to controlling the quality of voice over translations in each language.

Variation of Audiences

You’ll need to take into account the variation of your different audiences, including cultural differences even within a single language like dialects, for example.

Voice over translation can be a powerful tool for your brand. However, if it’s not done right, it can be counterproductive and dilute your message. If you want the highest-quality voice over translation, contact us here at Future Trans – we’re language service specialists and are experts at conveying what makes your business special in different languages. Get your free quote today!

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