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How to write and translate marketing slogans and why it matters


slogans marketing translations romanian

We often hear about marketing and slogans in most industries of the world but… what is marketing, more exactly? This question comes back again and again, and one possible answer can be summarised quite simply. Marketing is the bridge between a product or a service and the client. Bluntly put, it is the tool which allows the product or service a company sells to reach the final beneficiary, the mighty client.

Marketing is all about telling people about the product, especially those people who are interested in it. Starting with the logo or slogans, social media campaigns, articles, branding, and everything that has to do with showing your message online or offline. When it comes to translations, localizing your message in a certain language the right way is extremely important!

Translating a marketing slogan can be an essential aspect of the global strategy of a company. It is more than simply translating the words from one language to another; it’s about localizing the message and its essence in another culture, most of the time extremely different from the one it originates from. This process cannot be understated. Simply because a powerful and memorable slogan can make the difference between success and failure when it comes to the idea that you dedicated a lifetime to growing into reality.

slogans marketing translations romanian

Writing a “Genius” Slogan

Hundreds of articles and thousands of books, put together by the very best content creators in the world, can be found out there about how to come up with the perfect slogan. Luckily, and unfortunately, there are no rules when it comes to creating a slogan. Luckily because you get the freedom to make it your very own. Unfortunately, because nobody can actually teach you how to write one. Not even the very best copywriters on the planet.

So, how do you write a “genius” slogan? Most of the time… it writes itself. All you have to do is think about the message you want to send out about your company. A message you can draw through writing, in an artistic way, in 3-5 words.

The Notorious Target Language

Translating a slogan requires a profound understanding of the target language and the associated culture. Words can have different connotations depending on the cultural context. This means a slogan that “works” in one country may not have the same meaning or impact in another. That’s why the translation needs to be much more than a simple conversion of words. It needs to be an intelligent adaptation, intended to retain the essence of the original message, and “click” in the right way with the target audience.

If we want to translate “Just Do It” into Romanian, “Doar Fă-o” might sound slightly inappropriate to some people. Instead, we take the essence of this famous Nike slogan, and we could translate it as “Poți Să O Faci” or even more directly as “Pur și Simplu Fă-o.”


Another important aspect is the wordplay and elements of style used in the original slogan. These can be extremely challenging to convey in another language without losing meaning or humour. Some words or expressions may sound similar but have completely different connotations, leading to misinterpretations or even offensive messages. Therefore, translators need to be attentive to these subtle nuances and find suitable equivalents to maintain the initial impact.

For example, if we want to translate “Have it your way,” Burger King’s slogan, a direct translation wouldn’t mean anything. Instead, a marketing-ready translation could be “Ți-l faci cum ți-l place” or “Comandă-l cum îl dorești/râvnești/poftești.” No translation is correct when it comes to slogans, so translators usually must/should provide multiple versions of the same slogan and eventually develop the final form with an experienced copywriter or content creator.

slogans marketing translations romanian

Grammar, the Ultimate Hurdle

Grammatical and linguistic aspects need to be considered right from the very beginning. A well-written slogan in one language may not directly translate into another language without losing its clarity, or fluidity. It’s important for the translation to have a rhythm and sound nice in order to captivate the audience’s attention. Sometimes, creative adjustments are necessary to maintain this… harmony, let’s say.

Let’s go back to Nike’s famous “Just Do It.” A literal translation may not have the same impact in other languages and adapting it to retain the original strength and meaning may require considerable effort from translators. Again, the intervention of a copywriter or content creator can be extremely helpful in these cases.

Consider the Local Culture

Effective translation of marketing slogans involves not just a deep understanding of the target language but also an understanding of cultural subtleties. Certain words or expressions may be accepted in one culture but considered inappropriate or offensive in another. An experienced translator needs to be aware of these cultural sensitivities and adjust the translation accordingly to avoid any negative interpretation or loss of impact.

The Legality Aspect

In the process of translating a slogan, linguists should consider the specific legal regulations of each country where the company intends to promote its product or service. Certain words or expressions may have legal connotations or may be protected by copyright in a particular country. Incorrect or legally inappropriate translations could lead to legal issues and negatively affect the company’s image.

Last but not least, translating marketing slogans is not just a linguistic activity but a complex and very important communication strategy. Even defining, for the success of a company in a globalized environment. It requires linguistic skills of very high quality, as well as a deep understanding of local culture and at the same time, a huge dose of creativity to successfully preserve and convey the initial message in a different linguistic and cultural world.