Although the travel and tourism industry has taken a big hit over recent months, we fully expect the market to recover in due course.  Clearly, new protocols for travel and tourism are being – and will continue to be – developed, while the entrepreneurial mindset that characterises business owners in this sector will find new, imaginative ways to reach out to its customers, seeking investment and targeting new, global markets.

What’s the alternative? To simply give up, to believe that there will be no future for this hugely important industry?  When you put it like that, it’s not going to happen. Firms will survive and prosper.  But now, above all, is the time for creative thinking and planning the path out of the abyss.

That’s going to include a need to make sure your multi-lingual communications and marketing are fit for the future.  To help you, we’ve been putting our thinking caps on at Global Connects, to consider what travel/tourism may need in the weeks and months ahead. Here are a few pointers we would like to offer those companies seeking to re-engage with old customers and entice new ones from across the planet.

Do make the effort to reach out to potential customers in their own language. Whether it’s signage, brochures, safety notices or menus, work with a professional, reputable translation company to help take your company to new audiences overseas.

Do translate your website into the languages most used by your customers. The world of travel and tourism relies heavily on an online presence and that’s going to be even more the case in the future.  Anyone working from home can browse the world wide web at their leisure and if they can’t read your sales pitch in their language then they will look elsewhere.   A large percentage of visitors to your website won’t look past the first sentence if you can’t offer a translation in their local language. Make sure your brand and message are fully understandable for everyone who might discover it. Work with a multi-lingual translation company like Global Connects which can offer you a seamless and high quality translation service for all languages you require.

Do make the effort for those visitors who have made the effort to come to you. Ask us about the many and varied ways our professional interpreters can help make your visitors feel welcome and informed about your services and your local area.

Don’t think “everyone can speak English anyway.”  Firstly, they can’t; secondly relatively few are fluent, and while most have enough to get by, they really appreciate getting information and assistance in their own language. Show them you care about them and they’ll return – and bring their friends!  Equally importantly, there will be no confusion or misunderstandings based on their misinterpretation of your marketing materials.  That way lies unhappy customers and no repeat business.

Don’t use an unqualified translator. A bad translation is worse than no translation at all. Bear in mind what we said above about misunderstandings and their impact on future bookings.   A cheap price might as well be free if it causes you and your guests problems and creates bad feeling. Use a professional company, especially one like us who can assign a dedicated Project Manager to oversee and guide you at every step of the way.

Don’t be afraid to use alternative means of communication. Voiceovers, subtitles and audio are all increasingly used as options for marketing campaigns. Established, professional translation companies make all the difference as they have the breadth and depth of experience (and technology) to explain and organise every facet of your translation and interpretation requirements. Call the Global Connects team today to learn how we can help you to come out of the coronavirus crisis in good shape and ready to take on the world again.

Fiona Woodford, Global Connects