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In our series dedicated to localization best practices when entering and competing in leading markets such as the French or German ones, we have pinpointed a series of key factors that favorably influence the adaptation, activity, and development of a business in these specific markets. In this article we will further explore the topic, this time delving deeper into one of the most fascinating linguistic landscapes in the field of Translation and Localization: the Finnish market.
Getting a foothold in Finland with your business may seem like conquering the ‘unknown frozen land’, as indeed it is very different and niched in comparison to its western neighbors, often posing considerable challenges in terms of accurately adapting business models and content to the local audience. The Global Startup Ecosystem Report 2018 established Helsinki as a leading startup ecosystem highly versed in artificial intelligence, gaming technology, and life sciences. This positions Finland as a versatile and welcoming environment, offering a multitude of business development opportunities, provided that companies seeking to expand in the Finnish market can adapt their content as relevantly as possible to the Finnish market. This is where Translation and Localization come into play as a major service, with tremendous potential within the current spectrum of (sadly still pandemic-driven) European events.
The highly synthetic nature of the Finnish language, in which both nouns and verbs are inflected, renders it quite difficult, if not impossible to attribute strict grammatical rules. Due to this challenge, achieving a proper Finnish content translation or localization for your business means that budget constraints should be put aside in favour of subject matter experts with a real ‘feel’ of the language and its applications.
What are some of the Localization best practices when entering the Finnish market?
Websites are at the heart of any modern marketing strategy, and thorough Localization of your website, ensured by professional, subject matter experts, will provide you with a guaranteed result—it will attract new, previously inaccessible (due to the language barrier) visitors, as well as driving sales and your business prospects, especially when attempting to enter and make yourself comfortable in a new business landscape such as Finland.
Due to the dialects within the Eastern and Western parts of Finland being quite different from one another, planning your Finnish content localization strategy plays an essential role in defining your go-to-market penetration strategy, perfectly aligned with the cultural and social prerequisites, as well as expectations of the target market.
The Finnish audience is defined by a unique approach to the linguistic communication of ideas, and a direct translation and localization from English will certainly seem clumsy or unpolished in the eyes of the beholder, thus often being interpreted as not trustworthy.
Additionally, it is very important to be mindful of the wordiness of the Finnish language, with its plethora of compound words, which might prove a real challenge for your business, particularly when tackling marketing and website localization, so the best practice would be to always set a higher target language volume allowance for Finnish localizations.
And remember to stay on top of the Finnish SEO game
As pointed out in How to Increase Your Website Visibility SEO, a blog post by Delante, a company specializing in long-tail SEO and performance-based advertising, Search Engine Marketing and Optimization is a huge deal in today’s digital landscape, especially when it comes to the need for content to penetrate the desired target markets and reach the intended audience.
Effective multilingual SEO/SEM strategies can be accommodated through translating your content into different language combinations, the more popular and high-ranking, the better, multiplying the odds of gaining higher ranking and better search results, which in turn generates more exposure for your brand.
Consequently, just as SEO guru Jonathan Björkskog reiterates in his article on the matter, SEO Finland - Search engine optimization in Finnish? (jonathanbjorkskog.com), Finland tackles SEO a bit differently from search engine optimization performed in English. As Björkskog describes it, “Finnish is a tricky language to learn, and it seems that Google does not really master it yet. Finnish is a language with a lot of suffixes, things that are added to the end of words instead of put as a separate word in front of the main word. So that the main word would look different from time to time, it will be in different formats. Let’s take an example: “in the car” will be just one word in Finnish; “Autossa”. The word “in” does not really exist in Finnish. It is the same way with the words “on”, “with”, “from” and “to”, and many more. So to take the car, to go “with the car” would be just “autolla”.”
Throughout this article we have seen what makes an effective Content Localization Strategy for entering the Finnish market, with its multiple layers of content processing and adaptation to streamline the workflow and connect with a new audience, addressing specific coordinates such as purchasing habits, customer behaviours, and cultural differences.
At AD VERBUM, we take great pride in our extensive portfolio of professional Localization Services for a wide range of content types, from exact texts to creative writing. Our Professional Localization services are provided by multivalent content SMEs, native in the highest-ranking language combinations within the market, guiding you along every step of the intricate Localization processes and giving you the voice to speak globally through the right content, tailored to your needs.
Get in touch with the language experts at AD VERBUM and start your translation journey towards a new market and audience today.
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