Life for many people has changed considerably since the coronavirus began to spread around the world. In some cases, this has meant individuals have found themselves in need of an entirely new career. In others, working professionals, such as those providing translation and localization services, have had to find new ways to use their existing skills in order to bring in additional income. For translators, that many mean registering with a new translation company or perhaps starting their own translation blog.
Whatever your motivations, if you’re thinking about starting a translation blog or localization blog under quarantine, read on!
Is it just translation services that have translation blogs?
No, it’s not just translation companies who run translation and localization blogs. Blogging can be anything from a pastime for those who enjoy writing to a fulltime career. When it comes to translation blogs, people’s reasons for starting them vary. A translation blog can serve to build the blogger’s reputation as a translator and earn them additional online exposure, which can lead to additional income.
Blogs also deliver a number of other income streams, from advertising income to affiliate commission. Translation blogs are also a great way to ensure that the blogger keeps their skills fresh and knows their subject matter inside out. And, for those who simply love translation and localization and want to share their knowledge, blogs can be an excellent outlet.
How do you start a translation blog when you’re not a translation company?
If you’re ready to start blogging, you’ll need a name, a domain, hosting and a theme to get you off the ground. While you don’t need to be super technical to get started, the more technical your skills are, the easier you’re likely to find setting up your blog, just as having better computer skills can increase the pace of your translation work.
How much does it cost to start a blog? Not as much as you might imagine. A couple of hundred pounds will be enough to cover the basics for your translation blog, which includes hosting for your first year of operations. Hardly much when you consider how much some other enterprises cost to get off the ground!
With the basics in place, you’ll need to start writing. This is your chance to showcase your expertise to potential clients and other readers. However, you also need to ensure that the content that you’re producing is on the topics that people want to read about. At least, you will if your plan is to monetize your translation or localization blog.
That means it’s time to do some keyword research. There are free tools you can use to do this, as well as more advanced services that come with a cost. If you’re serious about blogging on translation and plan to write in multiple languages, you’ll also need to undertake your keyword research in multiple languages, as search volume for a particular phrase in English may not mirror search volume for the same phase in French (for example).
Should you blog in more than one language?
If you love translation and plan to make money through your blog, then it is worth considering blogging in more than one language. You can write your posts in one language and then translate them, or else write on different topics for the different languages. In reality, you’ll probably end up doing both, with evergreen content in both of the languages in which you write and then other posts that focus on current topics that will likely suit the readership of just one language.
How do I translate a blog? In just the same way you would translate any other document! Of course, if you’re undertaking your own blog translation work, then be sure to localize your blog posts as part of the process. What is the concept of localization? In terms of blog localization, it’s moulding your copy to suit each readership, along with potentially changing images, screenshots, infographics and so forth.
How can you make money through your translation blog when you’re not a translation agency?
Unless your blog is simply a hobby to express your love of translation and localization, you’ll likely want to try and make some money out of it.
How do bloggers get paid? In numerous ways, with the most common being advertising revenue and affiliate commission. There are plenty of ways you can approach both of these income streams and your approach will most likely involve a bit of trial and error as your blog grows and you expand your ideas and your strategy.
A key part of making money through your blog will relate to the number of visitors that it attracts. The more visitors, the greater your potential income. As such, part of running your own translation or localization blog will be outreach work.
Outreach involves networking with other translation bloggers, translation agencies or anyone else who might have an interest in your subject matter. You could ask them to link to one or more of your posts, exchange links to each other’s posts or come to whatever arrangement works for you both. You can also promote your translation blog on social media with regular updates and through membership of groups relating to translation and localization.
You can also gain exposure for your blog through undertaking your own public relations work. Services such as Help A Reporter Out (HARO) allow you to connect with reporters who are looking for comments in relation to your field(s) of expertise. If they like what you have to say, they will often link to your blog when crediting the comment to you in their published article.
Of course, the more attention your blog attracts, the greater the chance that you can pick up translation and localization work through it too.
Is it time to start your own translation blog?
Blogging is big business. In the United States alone, the number of bloggers has grown from 27.4 million in 2014 to 31.7 million in 2020, according to Statista. That’s a whole load of new blogs springing up, on all manner of topics.
If you’re serious about starting a translation or localization blog, then there’s no time like the present. Being stuck under quarantine means having plenty of time on your hands. When you look back on that time, will you have achieved something to be proud of? Your translation blog could be just that!