Localization in (UGC) user-generated content
In the modern digital era, user-generated content (UGC) has become essential for marketing. How often do you check the reviews before buying something? Or do you use Google Maps to check the rating of restaurants or cafes you are interested in visiting?
Businesses that successfully motivated their users to generate some content - product reviews, memes, comments, and videos (TikTok, for example), got a great additional tool to promote themselves. But, besides Google Maps, where can you automatically check the original content and its translation? The part of helpful UGC stayed untranslated and couldn't work for the entire business' audience.
This article explores the detailed benefits of UGC and the importance of its localization.
The benefits of UGC for businesses
UGC could be a powerful feature for your business. We defined the main points of why it works.
Social proof and high credibility. As people witness the reactions of real users, their confidence in the authenticity of the information grows. 84% of millennials and 70% of boomers confirmed that user-generated content plays a role in purchasing decisions. The primary industries where other people's opinion plays a vital role are: major electronics, cars, hotels, traveling, credit card, and insurance.
Resource saving. Creating quality content is a complex and expensive process. Utilizing user-generated content can be a cost-effective and time-saving strategy - no need to spend time and money on such work, and the marketing team can be targeted on more critical tasks.
Engagement raising. As users create content, it can be easily shared on their platforms, amplifying their reach and promoting greater engagement with their audience.
Fresh ideas and unique content. The valuable insights provided by the multitude of users who leave comments and share photos can be instrumental in generating innovative marketing concepts.
The challenges of UGC localization. How to solve them?
But besides all the benefits, such organic content becomes a challenge when we think about localization.
Dealing with a large amount of user-generated content (UGC) is a potential challenge. If we look at some big marketplaces, hundreds of reviews are created every second. This situation requires automatization of the translating process because no team can handle such a task. The best solution, and single for this case, is implementing a machine translation feature. By clicking the button, Amazon users get translations in their chosen language. This works well for some businesses, but something else is needed if you are looking for higher quality and have less UGC volume or your business significantly values user reviews.
And here we come to the next challenge - language nuances. Unlike marketing-generated content, UGC never will have the same high quality. People always use slang, abbreviations, and cultural references or make mistakes. Literal translation can bring unclear results. So besides the machine translation that can really speed up the process, you need someone who can moderate and approve translations. This approach, of course, will work only for the specific scope of the content. For example, if your team deems certain comments as more favorable, human intervention may be utilized in addition to machine translation for improved results.
This is how we gradually approach the content quality challenge. The main task of UGC is to provoke other users to choose defined goods or services. When it comes to reviews, there's an easy solution: marketplaces, e-commerce, and booking services typically include ratings for their products and services (apart from machine translation which also can be helpful). This way, users can see how other people evaluated something without detailed reading, and the mistakes in the text wouldn't affect opinions somehow.
Finally, it is essential to note that while user-generated content can be a valuable resource, its relevance tends to diminish more quickly than other types of content. Consumers typically seek out the latest reviews and opinions, and a few-year-old UGC would only work for a small number of industries.
Examples of successful UGC localization
Let's take a look at a few great examples of UGC localization. The first one is Booking.com. Booking.com has built a large worldwide group of users and gets a lot of reviews hourly. With the support of a MT engine, the reviews can be translated into one of the 40+ supported languages. Ultimately, this facilitates a smooth booking process for customers using the platform.
Another example, Airbnb is also related to the traveling industry. As well as Booking, Airbnb takes care to localize UGC to the user's language on their website and app, utilizing machine translation and language detection. This provides relevant and localized content to users worldwide.
Another great example is the Adobe support community. As the Adobe audience is international, they provide flexible translation to 22 languages. Users can translate the topic starter post or comments by clicking the button.
How can Lingohub help with UGC localization?
To support your audience, provide your website/app language versions with the already translated reviews and comments. The Lingohub features, especially machine translation, will help you adapt such content faster. The more quality engines your business chooses, the faster, and with fewer translators' efforts, you will cover this task.
With the Lingohub machine translation feature, you can use the robust combination of DeepL, Amazon, and Google Translate engines. Why did we choose and combine them? Because no one MT nowadays is perfect. For example, DeepL supports only 29 languages, but common pairs have a much higher quality rate, while Google and Amazon Translate provide more languages.
If you have the UGC content that humans should proofread or translate, Lingohub can also help you here. We provide the ability to hire professional translators for more than 40+ languages, including dialects. You don't have to waste time searching for the right talent because you can order text translation directly within the application.
Localization in user-generated content is pivotal for businesses seeking to expand their influence, engage users, and create valuable experiences. You can successfully use the user reviews and comments when entering new markets or to show the latest UGC, no matter in which language it was created.