Setting up a Translation Branch Office in Mexico for LA

okay, attached is the file, with your text at the bottom.

For your text I’ve changed some concepts a bit as well. I’ve been told by marketing people that it is better to be positive than negative – hence, not to speak of a “bad” translation and the consequences one may suffer from it, but convert things to positive instead. That is one of the things I believe about translations – especially marketing: that it is not just a translation of words but concepts as well, which also get “translated” with the culture in mind of the language being translated into. So you can keep your Spanish text as you feel best.

For the Los Angeles text, the more there is the better. I believe I already worked on it a lot, but have been too busy to put it online. A couple of things about search engine optimisation: more text is better; and it should be original content. To control original content I use copyscape.com. I believe you can copy/paste text into their webform, otherwise you can copy my text into a temporary webpage and use that (but do not use my text for your own website, because I already spent a lot of time formulating this text). I drew the text from wiki and several sources, reorganised it, then changed it, I think. You can check it in copyscape if it is “different enough”. It doesn’t have to be totally new and original but at least changed “enough”. If you feel ambitious you can prepare more text for what I’ve wrote and then I can proofread the English. If I haven’t changed my text, you can reword things to make it more original, and different. Then I can proofread your changes. If we will be focusing on Los Angeles, it is good to have the words Los Angeles throughout the text, but obviously not too much. A natural amount, plus a bit more. I have some contacts in Los Angeles, and if you want to move forward with this cooperation, I can use their address to submit the page to google’s local search results. I already have my main page there but we can do a second one for Los Angeles only.

If you compile more text for Los Angeles and run across some nice pictures in the process, it would be good to download and save those, so that we can add it to the website and make it prettier.

So I guess once you have finished your marketing text you’ll send it to me and I’ll blast it off to all the addresses you sent me through my secure server?

Personally I find the Spanish market quite competitive and don’t know if I could offer low enough prices, but I’ve been told by some of my Latin Spanish translators that my prices into other languages, such as FROM Spanish, would be quite competitive – especially if it’s a multi-language project and I translate through English. So I’m not sure if focusing into Spanish is the best option. But that could be good for yourself, and expand your offer to include my services into other languages.

For the LA office, as I think I wrote in a previous email, we can consider some cooperation whereby I would post your telephone number, since you would be on the same time zone. Personally I do not want anyone phoning me. I sleep sporadically and do not like being woken or my privacy invaded with annoying little requests – email only for me. But some people prefer telephone contact, and we can post your number if you would like to do that.

I have several potential concerns with that though:

– you said you are in Mexico now? People in LA might object to phoning you there, on the other hand, it could be more attractive because they’ll understand why our prices are more competitive

– if I do post your phone number, what would be your hours of operation?

– and perhaps most importantly, I am quite serious about quality and do not like less than perfect quality associated with my name. In this case I’m a little concerned that I have not tested your quality yet, or that you might take a lot of work for yourself if people phone you etc., and I cannot control the quality. If I do post your number on my site and get it near the top of google etc., I think it would be fair that I should get a percentage of whatever work you get through that. So we’d have to work out a deal with that as well. Both ways – a percentage for you if I get work from you somehow, and a percentage for me if the other way around. Usually, rather than percentage, I prefer to talk about flat markup. Like a cent per word or something added to your price. If it is a larger project than I can reduce my markup. So I guess we’d have to discuss the exact details concerning this.

Okay, ball’s in your court now!

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I’m a good writer in Spanish, I have a sales book and I write many articles for sales and for self improvement. I have never tried in English but I there is always a first time for everything.

I quickly checked out the sample you sent me and that could be enough if it is a problem for you to send more. I’ll forward that to some of my people for their opinion.

Can you advice me a subject in particular, to make it suitable for our purposes and avoid any similarity with your previous work? I can start writing next Saturday.

Do you mean the LA website content? Well I already sent you everything I wrote, so you can just expand from there.

What I can think of is that all translations I sell for Kenax goes through your translation system, that way you will always be able to review and correct any possible mistake.

Well, I guess we’ll have to devise some system. There could be several, for example:

– customer contacts you through my site, you agree to do a translation into Spanish without my involvement, I get a markup of 1 cent a word, for example

– customer contacts you through my site and wants my involvement (quality control). I would charge more for that.

– customer contacts you through your site, it is language combination you cannot handle, you forward it to me, I charge my usual markup of 3 cents on top of whatever the translator charges, plus 1 cent (or whatever you suggest) as a commission for you.

Concerning project management, this is included in my 3 cents. If you would like to get involved in project management and farming out translation work, we can talk about that as well, but I’d like to point out that I have people in the Ukraine and other countries who work for 3 maximum 4 bucks an hour, which is what helps me keep my prices and markup competitive. I wouldn’t usually give you contact to my translators, so if you wanted to get involved in managing projects, perhaps that could be restricted to your own translators or whatever in South America. But I have tons of those as well. Personally I think the best approach is if you spent as much of your time on marketing only, even the US market, and you let my “engine” with my inexpensive PMs (project managers) deal with the farming out stuff. I have some seven thousand translators in my database and an efficient system already set up. If you focus on finding us customers, translating yourself to help pay your rent (as I do), this could be the most lucrative.

But in real fact the most I get into sales the less I’ll be in direct translation. Perfect you get 3 cents on top of what the translator charge, if you have any suggestion regarding the markup I should do; your advice is very welcomed. 

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madmin

Head Honcho at KENAX
After translating and managing translation projects for more than 20 years, I'm happy to teach others the ropes and move on to other interests. My greatest perk from this profession is that it has given me the freedom to work when and where I want, and eventually to loosen the straps and travel freely around the world.
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