Measuring The Impact of Multilingual Content


Here at Managed Language we tend to bang on about the importance of multilingual content a lot. But just translating your content into the new target language isn’t going to be enough to see a positive impact. As with any campaign or marketing strategy, monitoring, analysing and adapting your multilingual efforts is just as important. Of course, it’s not as easy when the content has been translated into a whole new language, though. Especially if you don’t have an in-house team of multilingual marketers set up in your office!    

Before we take a deep dive into how to monitor your multilingual projects, let’s briefly recap the benefits of translating your content for other regions and cultures:

  • Break language barriers and communicate effectively with diverse customers and learners.
  • Expand their reach and impact to new and emerging markets and regions.
  • Build brand credibility and trust by showing respect and appreciation for different cultures and languages.
  • Improve customer experience and satisfaction by providing personalized and relevant content.
  • Increase conversion and retention rates by engaging and motivating their audience to take action.

Metrics to Measure the Impact of Multilingual Content

This is all sounds super, right? But it’s only going to be effective if you monitor the outcome of you multilingual content too. That way, you’re able to get a genuine idea of how your audience is responding and reacting to the work you’re putting out there (and spending your hard-earned pennies on). So first things first, what basic things, or metrics, should you be looking at once you’ve set that all-important copy live?  

  • Reach: Shows just how many people have viewed your content, whether it’s on your website, social channels or even via email. With the right tools, you can track the number of visitors, views and clicks for each language and market too — and negative or positive, it’s always educational. Even if this shows you that the piece of content that took linguists, proofreaders and editors months to create went nowhere, you can pivot your strategy for next time. (We get it though, that’s highly frustrating!)
  • Engagement: This metric takes your analysis a step further by tracking how people interact with your multilingual content in terms of liking, commenting, sharing or even rating it. You can also measure the engagement rate, ie. the percentage of people who have interacted with it out of those who viewed it, to evaluate the performance across different platforms.
  • Conversion: When it comes down to it, all marketing efforts should lead to sales or leads, right? It’s that all-important ROI. Whether it’s a purchase, a download, a subscription or a registration — you will need your visitors to make an action that drives your business goals. So tracking conversions of your multilingual content is vital.
  • Retention: An effective marketing strategy, multilingual or otherwise, should value returning visitors as much as conversions or ROI. So, measuring retention should be high on your list of metrics. If your customers or clients keep coming back to your content, then it’s safe to say you’ve piqued their interest or solidified their relationship with you as a brand, and are more likely to open those purse strings more than once.
  • Satisfaction: All of the above will tell you how your visitors are responding to your multilingual content with numerical data, but it also helps to know how they really feel about it. The best marketing content will create an emotional response of some kind — like humour or happiness — and this is far more likely to bring about a conversion and repeat custom. Although more tricky to measure, you can track customer satisfaction through feedback requests, reviews/testimonials or even analyse social reactions on your channels.  

The Tools to Measure The Impact of Multilingual Content

It’s all well and good to know what to measure and track once you’ve set your multilingual content out into the wild, but how is equally important. Whether you want to analyse the content on your site, or copy you’re pushing out there via email or social media, there will be a tool to help. 

  • Web analytics: Let’s start with your website — this is where you want your customers to come at the end of the day anyway. Depending on your CMS, you’re likely to have some sort of analytics function built in, like YoastSEO for WordPress. These tools will automatically track metrics like reach, engagement and conversions, giving you a well-rounded view of how your site is going down with your visitors. External tools can give you a deeper understanding too, like Google Analytics or Bing Webmaster. These will give you the option to segment the data and help you build out your audience profiles, which is particularly handy when you’re looking to grow your multilingual strategy.
  • SEO tools: There’s an ever-growing list of online SEO tools these days, paid and free to use, which can take your content and multilingual strategy from just OK to stratospheric. With tools such as Ahrefs and SEMrush, you’re able to track your onsite content in terms of reach, but also measure the performance in terms of keywords, backlinks and domain authority — and that’s just the start. Once you really get stuck into the SEO elements, you’ll be able to optimise everything from the content to your site structure so that it doesn’t just do well in your current market, but outperforms your competitors in your new one(s) too.
  • User feedback/Surveys: Although more difficult to measure, both user feedback and surveys are super helpful when it comes to measuring the impact of your multilingual content. Whether you have a small test group from your audience to beta-read your copy, or you send out blanket surveys to all users, you’ll glean actionable insights that can transform your marketing efforts. Whether it’s a pun that doesn’t translate (please see our Transcreation experts for that one!) or a user accessibility issue, you’ll find out much more from real people than just relying on the numerical data. Once again, there are a number of survey tools online you can use, or reach out to some of your most loyal customers for reviews.

What’s Next? 

Once you’ve collected your data from various sources, metrics and channels, what are you going to do with it? You can stare at those numbers for hours on end, but if you don’t revisit both the content and the data regularly, then you may as well have ignored the above! All good marketers love a spreadsheet, so that’s the best place to start. Create a content calendar for all your multilingual work — include publish dates, platforms/channels and metrics so you’re able to compare and contrast your recent output. Perhaps some pieces did better on your socials whereas others may have thrived via email rather than onsite. This is what will inform your strategy moving forward, and that’s how you’re going to dominate your new market. 

Final Thoughts

In a blink and you’ll miss it way, we mentioned Transcreation, ie. ensuring the content isn’t just written in the target language, but the intent and meaning have also been transformed to vibe with your new audience. You’ll see far better results from any of your multilingual output if you’ve thought about the entire journey and your audience, because at the end of the day, anyone online is likely to spend their hard-earned pennies with a company that understands them. And please, stay away from Google Translate. 

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