Tag Archives: social media

Director’s Notes: The year that was


Just enough time to do a quick end-of-2017-and-looking-forward-to-2018 blog. A small contribution to STB’s very busy and creative social media team effort – especially by marketing and resource managers Marya and Allison.


TB ITI award at gala dinner


You may have heard we won two awards this year (that’s TWO awards THIS year) from the Institute of Translation and Interpreting and the Association of Translation Companies. Coincidentally we also presented at their conferences. Thank you from me again to everyone who made that possible.


We’ve also had a couple of brand new STBabies joining the extended family – welcome Maxim and Chloe – with a few more on their way. However it may be some time before we start letting any of them work on translation jobs.


As ever we’ve also had the STB travelling bag looking cool and fashionable in exotic holiday locations, plus a competition for the general public to find it around Farnham. At the moment on Facebook you will find an advent countdown of us in Christmas jumpers jumping out of a box and the ever-amusing Christmas animations. There’s also a whole year of news and views of world events from a languages perspective, and things we’ve been doing as a company and individuals (after all, we are all individuals…)


So scroll back on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram because we shamelessly want those likes and comments!


A reminder that we’re more than happy (in fact we lurrrve it) to offer advice, work experience, internships and the like to anyone interested in the translation industry. So if you’re already a translator or thinking of becoming one then get in touch with us in 2018. We’ve even got some blog articles from our 2017 interns that might be worth a peek.


And finally, for any clients or potential clients reading this, then we’d equally lurrrve to hear from you more in 2018 – as the pitch goes – to learn more about what you do, and explain more about what we do and how.


Happy Holidays and New Year!


STB Director George Cooke

George Cooke


How to market translation services to your potential clients?


Picture the scene: somebody needs a service which you provide and they simply arrive at your office and ask you to help. Sound unlikely? Well, that’s because this hardly ever happens.
For starters, a lot of companies don’t realise that to reach a global audience they need to have their commercial, legal and marketing materials in different languages. Even if potential clients understand how vital high-quality translation can be for their business, a translation agency needs to be aware they are not the only fish in the sea. With the buzzing and booming translation industry, you face fierce competition from other agencies, both big and small, and even freelance translators. To stand out, you need a marketing plan. Here are some tips to help you keep ahead of the pack:


• Know your competition – You can keep reassuring yourself that the smaller translation agencies have limited followers or an unimpressive website, or you can aspire to compete with the bigger players by researching what they are doing with a view to attracting clients. Knowing which companies are taking the biggest share of your market will help you to define the edge you have over them. It might be that personal touch with the client meetings you organise, or a long history in the language industry like Surrey Translation Bureau (STB) has.


• Aim for maximum exposure – Find out who your target audience is and try to reach out to as many people as possible within that circle. There is no harm in having a presence across all social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and Instagram etc.); attending various networking events; joining different groups; writing plenty of blogs and articles for various websites and getting yourself featured in different publications. You never know when and where you will get noticed!


Social media
To give you a good example of this, one of our in-house translators, Jenny Mallinowski was on an Eagle radio show a couple of years ago. Very recently, another of our translators, Jonathan Wicks appeared on the Paul Miller Show on BBC Radio as a mystery guest, with listeners calling in trying to guess his profession.


Paul Miller show
These moments in the limelight translated into actual enquiries for us. One listener of the Paul Miller show sent us an email saying:
“The good thing is that I had no idea that such businesses as yours existed until I heard Mr Wicks on the Paul Miller Show last week and so if ever an occasion arises in the future where I want some translation done I shall know where to come.”
• Stand out as a company that knows the language business – From having your website in multiple languages, to writing for publications within the language industry; you need to make sure people know you are an expert in your field. Join organisations within the industry like ITI, ELIA and ATC and stay involved. Go one step further by joining panel discussions and holding talks about industry-specific topics.


ITI conference
STB is an ITI and ELIA member and regularly attends their events and seminars. We also contribute to the ATC blog and the ITI bulletin.
• Always remember SEO – Google is, and will be for the foreseeable future, one of your largest sources of new clients. That’s why, whatever you do in the digital world, you should always remember to include keywords. The higher your Google ranking, the greater your chances of generating new enquiries.


• Measure your success – With all your marketing measures, it all boils down to the objective of getting new leads to convert to actual sales. Take the time to go through analytical reports, keep track of offline enquiries and their sources, and invest in software that allows you to keep track of who is visiting your website and using what channel. Focus on the activities that generated the most leads, but keep revisiting the ones that didn’t work well by doing them differently the next time.


• Be bold, proactive and consistent – Experiment with new campaigns, reach out to your clients directly, react and respond to posts on social media.


Also, get involved with the community to create a positive image. For instance, STB joined hands with the non-profit organisation Translators without Borders in their ‘Simple Words for Health’ project (Read more about it here).


Translators without borders
Lastly, one very important rule is to always stay active, be on the radar at all times.


If you became aware of us from this blog and would now like us to demonstrate our linguistic capabilities, please email hello@surreytranslation.co.uk or call 01252733999. 

Going Global – from the UK to the rest of the world


A picture of a globe, ready for going global


This December, Surrey Translation Bureau exhibited at Going Global 2015. Hosted by London Olympia, it was perfect for companies looking to expand internationally, export products or set up overseas operations.

This is one of the first exhibitions we have exhibited at as a company, especially on such a large scale. We prepared carefully in the months leading up to Going Global. Although we didn’t know exactly what to expect, we thoroughly enjoyed meeting new potential clients and talking to the other exhibitors.

Going Global took place alongside three other exhibitions; The Business Show, Business Startup and Techpreneur, in the impressive building that is London Olympia. The four exhibitions showcased a host of interesting businesses from start-ups who had designed innovative apps to larger companies such KPMG and Hewlett-Packard. It was great to have such large brands exhibiting alongside SMEs. Everyone was very friendly and keen to talk about their brand. It was the perfect atmosphere to network and meet new contacts!

The show was attended by about 33,000 visitors, which made for two extremely busy days. At the STB stand, we met many interesting contacts from wine exporters to logistics companies through to tech companies. Many visitors complemented our stand, which we’d decorated with the word ‘hello’ in multiple different languages. They were impressed to hear that we translate into most world languages. We thoroughly enjoyed talking to companies who were taking the first steps in expanding internationally. It was great to explain how they would go about requesting translations with us to help their business grow.

Over the two days, we ran a competition which gave our contacts the chance to win £200 worth of translations for their first order with Surrey Translation Bureau after exchanging business cards with us. This opportunity was taken up by many and was just about as popular as the purple STB-coloured chocolate éclairs we offered to visitors! Coming back with a stack of cards, we drew the winner earlier in the week. Airport2lodge was the name out of the hat – we look forward to delivering their first translation.

​As well as a vast array of exhibitors, there were some informative seminars. These were targeted at helping companies, particularly SMEs, to lay the foundations for expanding their business internationally. Speakers offered advice on entering markets such as Eastern Europe and BRICS (Brazil, China, India, Russia, South Africa). There were also talks on the importance of social media in helping customers to recognise your brand. It’s important to have the resources to maintain these networks, to answer customers’ questions and update clients on your company’s developments.

If you needed a reminder that the world is becoming ever more connected, Going Global was the perfect illustration. As many more companies enter international markets and businesses step up the number of countries they are operating in, the need to communicate with clients in their own language is increasing dramatically. We took a lot of requests for website translation when talking to visitors during the exhibition. A great way to reach clients is identifying certain countries where there is potential growth for your company.

After two very successful days at London Olympia, we packed up our stand and headed back to Farnham, delighted to have met so many businesses keen to expand internationally. We’re looking forward to quoting and preparing translation proposals for some of these new and diverse contacts.

Do you want to follow in the footsteps of the clients we met at the exhibition to help your company go global with translations? Contact hello@surreytranslation.co.uk today to request a no-obligation quote.

Innovation in translation – the 2015 ATC conference

Manchester's Old Trafford Stadium, where the ATC Conference was held


This September, Surrey Translation Bureau attended the 2015 Association of Translation Companies conference at Manchester’s prestigious Old Trafford stadium. As well as offering us the chance to meet up with other language service providers from all over the world, the ATC conference featured presentations on a wide range of topics relating to the translation industry.

This year, the word on everyone’s lips was ‘innovation’. The translation industry is currently in a state of transition, with the emergence of new technologies paving the way for new methods of working, which contrast greatly with what used to be the norm. With so many of the speeches and stands at the event dedicated to new translation technologies, it is almost hard to believe that within relatively recent memory a translator’s tools consisted solely of pens, paper and a library of dictionaries – times have certainly changed.

In any industry, change can be an alarming and powerful force, and some of the messages that seemed to resonate most strongly came from speakers who looked to other industries. The impact of technology in these fields was tracked, as well as the paths that the successful companies of today took when their industries experienced rapid periods of change. Whether it was Paula Shannon mapping out technological trends by examining the role of clocks through the ages, Tony O’Dowd providing insights into the creative business plans of budget airlines and E-commerce companies, or Richard Brooks drawing on examples from British department stores, wine merchandising and even top of the range jet engines, comparisons such as these were a frequently recurring theme.

The overriding message was that companies can stay ahead of the curve by thinking creatively and being prepared to adapt. This was neatly summed up by Diego Bartolomé at the end of his presentation on the future of the translation industry: “evolve before you have to.” None of the speakers backed away from the challenges that translation companies currently face and a positive tone was apparent.

Alongside this fascinating food for thought, there were a number of presentations focusing on topics already close to STB’s heart: maintaining strong relationships with freelance translators, ISO standards, effective management of translation supply chains, working with universities to nurture the next generation of translators and multi-channel social media marketing. Not to mention a dinner featuring a charitable collection for Translators Without Borders – a fantastic cause of which STB is already a proud sponsor.

The two-day conference was concluded by a compelling report into the UK translation industry’s landscape, based on data collated and analysed by the ATC itself. The overview provided some fascinating statistical insights, and we’re looking forward to getting our hands on the full report.

With that, we headed back due South towards home, pleased to have had so many of the things we do everyday affirmed, and full of ideas on how to continue our growth as a company.

If you would like to read more about the ATC conference, take a look at the #ATCConf15 hashtag on Twitter.

Are you interested in learning more about the translation process and how we can make these innovations work for you? Why not contact hello@surreytranslation.co.uk for a quote?