Proofreading plays an essential role in language services like translation and transcription but it does not always get the attention it deserves.
In this article, we explain why proofreading is so important for content production and the role it plays in key language services like translation, transcription and transcreation.
Why is proofreading important?
Proofreading is one of the final stages of quality assurance in content production and key language services like translation and transcription. Once the editing process is complete and all of the content/stylistic aspects are finalised, proofreaders correct any technical mistakes in the final piece – for example, typos, spelling mistakes, grammar errors, and misused punctuation.
This is important for a variety of reasons:
- Accuracy: Proofreading ensures the technical accuracy of the language used in all of your content.
- Intent: Correct use of grammar and punctuation ensures that the meaning of your content is delivered as you intend it – one misplaced comma can change the entire meaning of a sentence.
- Immersion: Error-free content immerses audiences without distracting errors interrupting their concentration.
- Engagement: Error-free, immersive content also improves engagement, allowing your message to make the strongest possible impact.
- Retention: Error-free, immersive and engaging content, will allow your audiences to take in more of your message and remember key points more effectively.
- Trust: Audiences will trust you and your messages if your content is technically accurate.
- Authority: Trust and accuracy give you the power to speak with more authority, giving your message more influence on audiences.
- Creativity: Great proofreaders can also help you to bend the rules of language use for stylistic purposes, such as using slang or puns effectively.
When investing a lot of time and effort into creating content and designing everything you say to have a calculated impact on audiences, the last thing you want are trivial errors. These will distract audiences from your message, weaken the trust and impact of your content or even, unintentionally, change the meaning and message you want to convey.
The role of proofreading in translation & transcription
In the same way journalists and authors work with editors and proofreaders, language experts also have a similar review process for their work. Translation and transcription are two perfect examples, where language professionals produce a first draft of content, review it, and then submit their work for editing and proofreading.
Proofreading translation ensures the technical accuracy of every language version of your content. You might think translators should produce 100% flawless output but it is important to remember that professional writers working within a single language still rely on proofreaders to fix any remaining issues.
Essentially, the human brain is so good at correcting errors that sometimes writers might become blind to their own typos, misspellings and other technical mistakes. Even the most technically knowledgeable writers are vulnerable to overlooking their own mistakes and this is why professional proofreaders are invaluable.
The importance of proofreading only increases as you produce more content in shorter spaces of time too. For example, when translating large volumes of content every week – which is true for any company running a multilingual blog – then the risk of technical mistakes significantly increases. This is especially true if your translators are dealing with high volumes of content and tight deadlines where they could be rushed into making more mistakes.
Having the right proofreaders on your side will allow your translators to work at a faster pace without technical issues making it into your final content.
Transcription is another good example of this simply because transcription itself is a high-speed process. Transcribers are essentially converting audio into text, often in real-time, and content can be produced remarkably quickly if a good proofreader is involved, finalising the output.
Transcreation: A note on editing vs proofreading for creative translation
Earlier, we listed creativity as a key benefit of proofreading in content production so in this section we briefly touch on the more creative side of translation.
Transcreation is the creative use of translation, generally for marketing and advertising purposes. It is used in cases where direct translation fails to convey the intended meaning of your message and alternative wording needs to be considered in the translated copy. If you work in marketing and advertising (or the creative industries), here is an overview of what you need to know about transcreation.
The more creative you get with translation, the more likely you are to need to bend established rules on spelling, grammar, punctuation and other guidelines. So it is essential to have expert proofreaders check your transcreated messages and copy for each target language. This will help you maximise creativity and also, have an additional objective opinion on your copy, without bending the rules too far.
If you want to produce polished translated content, using professional proofreading services is a must and our proofreaders can help. Complete the form on our contact page to discuss your projects’ proofreading needs and rates.