I went to a very interesting seminar yesterday. The subject was working with Americans. UK Trade and Investment organised the event. There was a fantastic incite into some of the cultural differences between Great Britain and the US. Much of this was of course related to business culture. From a translation industry viewpoint, the old comment of Sir Winston Churchill comes to mind. This is that Britain and the US are two nations who are divided by a common language.

Differences between UK and US English

There are of course obvious differences between UK and US English, not just a few spellings, and different words. The presenter mentioned that Americans are much less used to UK spellings and pronunciation than we are to US English. This is because UK television and other media has much more US content when compared to UK content shown in the US.

Working with Americans

How do we deal with this as a UK translation agency? Well we can translate as well as localise between the two languages. As with other languages, you use translators who are natives of the target language.

Suited to the US market

So what have we learnt that’s new? Well a greater cultural awareness of the States, and also confirmation that its a market we should be aiming at. Our core competence of speed and quality will suit the American market. Better Languages has advantages over US translation agencies in sourcing translators into other European languages. We also have advantages in niche areas like label translation and packaging translation. We already supply translation services to businesses in the US, Canada, and recently have started translating into Mexican Spanish.

Next steps

Contact Better Languages to discuss any aspect of translation. We can price on translation and localisation between UK and US English. We also provide translations for the US market.