In the past, if you ran a business you would have not really worried about employing bilingual staff. The chances were that all of your potential customers spoke one language, so communicating with them was easy because you spoke that language too. Today, not having the ability to deal with customers in different languages is usually a mistake.
The ability to market to more potential customers
This is because employing at least some bilingual staff opens up the chance for you to access a much bigger pool of potential customers, and do so in a much more effective way. It allows you to advertise to more people and spread the word further about the products and services that you offer.
Of course, you can use an advertising agency to do help you to do this, but doing so can be very expensive. Often these agencies charge a lot of money.
In addition, if you are unlucky enough to get a non-native speaker writing your advertising copy, it can actually turn out to be ineffective. Someone who was raised speaking a language has a much better understanding of how it is spoken than a person who learned it in college. They understand how people actually use the language, and how they respond to what is said.
A native speaker is much more likely to write advertising copy that converts. Having someone on your staff to read over your foreign language adverts and make suggestions is invaluable.
The ability to serve foreign clients
If your foreign language adverts work and you secure clients from abroad, or the business that are still learning the language of their new country, you need staff who can help them. Having people on your workers that can listen to customers in their first language and resolve any issues they have is invaluable.
You cannot trust translation tools
It is a mistake to think that you can get away with using translation software. Translation tools help, but they definitely cannot be relied on to be 100% accurate. If you do not believe us, this article will be a real eye opener for you. Many of the stories are funny, but nonetheless you would not be pleased if some of the mistakes slipped through, and ended up on your sales copy.
Bilingual signs and sales materials
Putting up a bilingual no smoking sign only costs a few dollars, but in some areas, it is a great investment. For example, you run a restaurant, trying to explain to a new customer that they cannot smoke after their meal in a language that they do not yet fully understand is not easy. It can easily lead to an uncomfortable conversation that can seem confrontational. Not the ambience you are after, or a situation your new customer wants to be put in.
If you notice that a lot of people from a certain part of the world are moving into your area, it makes good business sense to try to reach out to them in their own language. Doing this, makes it far easier for them to become your customers. For many businesses, employing bilingual staff is a good idea, as is investing in your existing workforce and offering them the chance to learn another language.
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