Speaking Academese: Tailoring your Message to your Audience’s Academic Level

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We’ve previously covered the importance of culturally and geographically tailoring your message to your target audience, but it’s also important to consider their academic and expertise level. When translating texts, the goal is for it to be easily understood by the target Spanish speaking audience. Making sure your message is being understood in the way in which it was intended, and by the people for whom it was intended, can be a bit of a balancing act. For example, just as you would not want your message to be communicated in an overly complex way that can be misunderstood; you would not want to deliver an overly simplified version to a group of experts in the field. Is this a group with whom you can interact with on an informal level, or are formalities expected? These are all important points to consider before translating your message to be sure you are communicating effectively to your target audience.

We will discuss the following key points about the importance of considering the target audience’s academic level for your Spanish language communications:

  • Why Taking an Audience’s Academic Level into Consideration is Important: Tailoring your message to your target audience is important, whether it be tailored geographically or academically, to ensure it is easily understood.
  • Niche Spanish Vocabulary: Beyond simply considering an audience’s academic level, it is important to consider certain vocabulary that may be specific to particular professions or segments of the population.
  • Spanish Translation and Copy Editing Professionals: Why targeting an audience’s academic level is best left to the professionals.

Why Taking your Target Audience’s Academic Level into Consideration is Important

Taking your target audience’s education level into consideration allows you to tailor a message that will be perfectly understood and will be relatable to your audience. Even in English, you would address a room of tenured professors differently than a room full of car mechanics, even if the essence of the message you wish to deliver is the same.

Ultimately, the goal of translating a text into Spanish is to have it easily understood by the intended audience. To do this, it is important to make decisions such as how formally to address the audience, or whether to use complex or more simplistic vocabulary. It is important to consider that not all messages are created equal, which is a concept that can be applied to English speaking communications as well. This becomes even more important when translating a text from English to Spanish while maintaining the original intent and voice of the message, and where hiring a Spanish translation and copy editing professional is key.

Understanding your audience is the first step to having your audience understand your material. By putting yourself in their shoes and seeing the material from their perspective, you can tailor the language of your translated to text to align with their level of comprehension. Speaking to an audience on their level is crucial in ensuring they not only understand your message, but hopefully respond favorably.

Niche Specialty Vocabulary

Now that you have determined the academic level of your target audience, it’s important to dig a little deeper. Is there a specific niche or specialty in which they are particularly well educated? Speaking to a room full of PHD’s is one thing, but are they medical doctors or philosophers? Each group would have a different expectation and understanding of certain terminology. A lawyer will use different vocabulary to discuss the law than a sommelier, and the sommelier will have a vocabulary specific to wine that the lawyer may not possess.

In order for your target Spanish speaking audience to feel as though the translated message was meant for them, using the appropriate industry specific terminology is incredibly important. Using terminology that is either incorrect or overly simplistic will result in a message that comes across as unprofessional, sloppy, or poorly researched and you may not be taken seriously. This also applies in reverse. If you use terminology that is overly complex and specific for an audience not comprised of experts, the meaning of your message will be lost.

In the end, translating your message from English to Spanish in a way that can be understood and respected by your target Spanish speaking audience is a balancing act. Use terminology that is too broad and the specific message you are translating becomes vague. Use terminology that is too specific and only a handful of listeners may meet the criteria.

Spanish Translation and Copy Editing Professionals

Maintaining the integrity of your message throughout the translation process is important. Chances are the message was initially crafted with a certain audience in mind, and knowing that your message continues to communicate clearly and effectively to the intended target audience is key. This is why hiring a professional Spanish language expert is of the utmost importance. Only a professional Spanish language translator and copy editor is trained to be able to use the vocabulary that best suits the needs of your intended Spanish speaking audience. A Spanish language expert can tailor your message to be more or less formal or complex and still maintain the intended meaning in a way that a layperson cannot. This means that you can be certain your translated text is a perfect fit for your target audience.

Our Spanish with Style team is comprised of highly trained individuals with a wealth of knowledge in many industry specific areas such as banking, oil and gas, and even children’s books. You can trust that your text will be translated in a clear, concise and professional manner, and that it will speak specifically to those with whom you wish to engage.

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