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Transcreation is a concept used in the field of translation studies to describe the process of adapting a message from one language to another, while maintaining its intent, style, tone, and context. A successfully transcreated message evokes the same emotions and carries the same implications in the target language as it does in the source language. It is related to the concept of localization which similarly involves comprehensively adapting a translated text for the target audience. Transcreation highlights the translator's creative role. Unlike many other forms of translation, transcreation also often involves adapting not only words, but video and images to the target audience.

Transcreation theory was first developed in the field of literacy translation and began to be adapted for use global marketing and advertising in the early 21st century. The transcreation approach is also heavily used today in the translation of video games and moble apps.

The concept of transcreation emphasizes the translator's independent creative role. In the context of marketing, the professional translators engaging in transcreation are often referred to as "copywriters" or "copyeditors", or alternatively as "transcreators". The concept of transcreation was first developed by translators in INDIA and BRAZIL in the mid-20th century.

What is the difference between transcreation, copywriting and adaptation?

The differences between these three services can sometimes be difficult to appreciate, but they each meet specific needs. Just like an adaptation, transcreation is based on a source text, but it also requires clear instructions and the extensive creativity of copywriting. 

Moreover, transcreation suits short texts, in contrast to the two other services. All three include an element of adaptation.

Customised support

As with all projects, it is essential that we start by properly analysing and understanding your needs to guarantee a quality service. We take the time to listen to your needs to understand your brand’s DNA and to discover all its characteristics. This immersion into your company culture serves to produce clear and precise specifications, similar to ones drawn up by a marketing agency, that can then be sent to a translator specialised in marketing content, known as a “transcreator”.

The expertise of a transcreator

A translator will remain faithful to the source text, whereas a transcreator will take a more liberal approach. As well as being a good linguist, he is also an expert creative writer. This double skill allows him to master the content fully: he understands the meaning perfectly and adapts it to the target market.

Transcreation is much more than translation. It takes the original message and conveys it in another language, making sure that the text in the target language keeps the original style, vocal tone, intent, and emotional salience.

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