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Found 8 results

  1. I recently came across an interesting blog post by Laura Belgray explaining why she doesn't refer to herself as a freelancer. She's a copywriter, not a translator, but I think it applies to our world too. Actually, I think it applies to any professional working solo. In her own words, here's why she doesn't use the word "freelancer": Because it sounds poor. Poor, and desperate. It might be a good word for SEO. But in my experience, the second you say you’re a freelancer, people think you’ll take any scraps, for any pay. I want to say she's exaggerating a little, but then I think how much better "I run a translation business" sounds than "I am a freelance translator". It shouldn't, but it does. Why do freelancers have such a bad rep? Is it because we're willing to accept lower prices than "traditional businesses"? Is it because people associate freelancing with making some extra cash on the side? Whatever the reasons, I find myself using the term less and less with clients as I grow my business and I think that's the best option for me. What about you? Do you call yourself a freelancer? Here's Laura Belgray's blog post: http://talkingshrimp.com/f-word-freelancer
  2. My Website

    Hey everybody, So, I have recently finished creating a website for my "business" and I wanted to share it with you guys to see what you think. It's a long way from looking anywhere close to professional but you know, any ideas or criticism is very helpful looking forward. The address is https://www.translationstospanish.com Anyway, thanks a lot for your time and have an amazing day.
  3. until
    Hey guys, I’m joining Translators on Air today to talk about what it takes for translators to act as de-facto agencies. Expect a mixture of practical tips and philosophical blablabla from me. The exact proportion is yet to be defined Join here: https://www.crowdcast.io/e/one-man-translation-agency
  4. Our joint friend Simon @RussianTranslatorPro Akhrameev has recently published an article called "Sad truth about the translation industry”. Here are some snippets I wanted to quote and discuss at the same time: I agree for the most part. Translation agency business seems so easy to start: You buy cheap, sell high, and swim in money. Needless to say, it rarely ends up this way. Most of such agencies fail very soon, but in the process they manage to “convince” several customers that “translators are scam,” and several translators that “agencies are scam.” On the other hand, they do fail, and I don’t really think we should “compete” with them. We just have to keep doing what we are good at, whether it’s translating, managing projects, or running a proper agency. While of course educating clients who can be educating and sieving out those that cannot — in the longer or shorter run, such clients will fail due to their attitudes, too, so they shouldn’t bother us much. That’s not really sad, to me. What is sad that in some localities mean income is so low that even good translators are willing to work for peanuts. Say, in remote Russian provinces $500/month can be considered a solid income. So if you are okay living there, you can translate 50,000 words a month (which is a sufficiently small wordcount to be able deliver a good translation) at $0.01/word and live happily. The same can be said if you are a retiree/student/someone who just does translation for fun. The way out? I think, good translators earning $500/month will soon understand that they are in a great demand and will be able to increase their rates — first to $0.02, then to $0.04, and so on. This is the way I’ve gone all the way from $0.02 to $0.10/word (which will hopefully grow as I continue building my reputation). This, indeed, is one of the biggest idiosyncrasies of the translation business. If you order a taxi, you can easily say if it was bad once you get out of that car with your legs shaking and your whole life having passed before your eyes a few times during that wild ride. Few industries can “boast” this feature where the client cannot judge whether what he gets is worth the money. My recipe here is to prove value, not quality. For instance, if I translate an email marketing campaign that was “translated” before, I will ask the customer to then make an A/B testing of my and previous translation. Usually the conversion rates for mine are times higher — which customer can easily see, even if they know nothing about “quality” or cannot even speak the target language. Personally, I think that the biggest plight here is not that they use machine translation post-editing, but that they have wrong expectations about it. PEMT is great when it is used with a clear purpose and a clear understanding of what it is by a translator. Too often, when I order PEMT from a “real” translator, I see that they are doing it wrong: Instead of ensuring a factually correct, if stylistically awkward, text, they spend precious minutes on rephrasing sentences to make them sound natural, while admitting unforgivable factual mistakes. Which is especially dangerous given that Neural Machine Translation is awesome at providing naturally sounding output that is, well, wrong. IMHO, yes and no here. Sometimes it is impossible to manage a 50-million-word project unless you are as big as, say, Lionbridge. On the other hand, if Lionbridge joined Smartcat they would see that they don’t need a plethora of subcontractors and subsubcontractors to work with — they could easily work either directly with freelancers, or with a small number of single-language vendors who would be in turn working directly with freelancers. So I would say disintermediation is one of the trends in the translation industry, as in many others, and it will soon become less of a plague. What about you guys? What do you think are the saddest truths of the translation industry?
  5. That’s a quote from an old but good article titled “Bambi vs. Godzilla: how to work with very big clients” by @Matthew Stibbe. The article makes quite a few good points both on why big companies need small vendors, and on how small companies can get past the typical obstacles. Here are some more quotes: “Your first objective is to make contact with individuals inside large corporations who can become your champion.” “Your objective is to get rostered. Once you are on the roster of approved suppliers, the nice people in the marketing department can give you work simply by raising a purchase order.” “'Avoid the trap of subcontracting for a larger agency that is already rostered.” “The more unique or specialist or niche your services, the harder it is for a purchasing department to haggle about prices or play you off against other providers.” “Try to avoid giving a daily or hourly rate as this is easily negotiated away.” (@Tanya Quintieri, I wonder what you have to say about this, as I know you are an advocate of hourly or per-project pricing.) What do you guys think? How many of you are used to working with big clients? What tips and tricks you can share? I’ll tell you mine if you tell us yours P.S. Thanks to @Alessandra Checcarelli for sharing this on Facebook!
  6. That’s a quote from an article shared by @Tanya Quintieri. What about you? Do you prefer calling your clients/customers clients or customers? Or else? By the way, is there a similar distinction in your language? For example, in Russian we have zakazchik (lit. "orderer") for "customer" and klient for, well, "client". The connotations are more or less the same as in English.
  7. Hi, I'm Gisela from Argentina

    Hi! I am Gisela from Rosario, Argentina. I have been in the freelance business for twelve years now working mainly for agencies in my country. Now I want to expand my international reach and SmartCat seems to be a good way of doing that. And, I have to say, I love the SmartCat online translation tool, I think it's swell. I am a certified translator with a technical-scientific/literary diploma, advanced law studies (incomplete), and my specializations include Legal, Hospitality, Travel and Tourism, Business, Marketing, Food/Cuisine, Wine/Beverages and Fashion/Beauty. A keen reader, I enjoy history and historic fiction, narrative and biographies. Looking forward to taking part in the senior translator program to increase my visibility and opportunities in the ecosystem.
  8. We had a webinar with @Cherie Plaice on running one's own agency. (In case you missed it, you can watch it in replay here.) If you've watched it, what do you think? Did you enjoy the "interview-style" approach, or would you prefer having further webinars in a more traditional format in our further events? Do you have any other suggestions/comments? Let us know how we can improve!