Want to scale your audience globally with your existing content? Translation and localization is the key

Have you ever considered entering new markets with your content? As competition in the domestic market grows, going global may become the key to significant breakthroughs. By translating and localizing existing content, you can increase your presence globally without producing new content. In this article AIR Media-Tech, an international company for digital-first creators, shares an overview of opportunities for your global development on YouTube and real-life cases of its partners that scaled their audience by translating and localizing their content

Global opportunities on YouTube

If you still rely solely on an English-speaking audience, look at Figure 1. Among 3.8 billion people speaking 14 key languages, English accounts for only 21% of that number. Just imagine what could happen if you tried to reach the rest of the world!

Besides, English is the most competitive language segment on YouTube. In the Arabic and Spanish languages, competition is 3 to 3.5 times lower, respectively. The lowest competition per viewer among creators is in the Hindi segment.

Competition for viewers in different language segments

Another important thing to consider is CPMs (cost-per-mille) on YouTube in different markets (see Figure 2). The highest СPM is in the US and a bit lower in other English-speaking countries like Australia and the United Kingdom. Note that the Russian market is currently not monetized due to YouTube restrictions imposed in response to the country’s invasion of Ukraine, so it’s not the best time to translate your content into Russian. 

Average income from 1 mln commercial views that AIR Media-Tech partners generate in various markets

Even though other language markets have lower CPMs, this doesn’t mean they are not commercially attractive. This is because there’s a lower level of competition per viewer in non-English speaking markets. Countries like India or Brazil compensate lower CPMs with the potentially huge number of viewers who speak Hindi or Portuguese and substantial revenues in absolute figures. 

Case studies

Let’s see how this strategy works in practice. Here are some cases of YouTube creators that skyrocketed their audiences by translating and localizing their content in partnership with the AIR Media-Tech team.

HZHtube Kids Fun

This Canadian family-friendly channel features kids, Heidi and Zidane, who make toys unboxing and reviews, fun activities, challenges, family travel vlogs, and many other entertaining things. Their original channel is in English. 

In 2019, the creator started translating and localizing their content with AIR. The first translated channel was in Arabic, followed by the launch of Hindi and Spanish channels. As the channels grew, the portfolio of channels expanded until income from the translated channels exceeded income from the main channel. Today, HZHtube Kids Fun has 12 translated channels and over 54M subscribers globally, among which only 12M are subscribed to the main channel.

The growth of Heidi and Zidane’s Spanish channel during the first 3 and 6 months

Lady Diana

Lady Diana is one of the most popular YouTube creators among teenagers who became famous for her music and entertainment videos. She’s gaining millions of views on almost every video. Originally from Ukraine, the creator launched the channel in 2017 and started posting videos about vacations, gifts, grooming, and music videos. In 2020, Diana launched a series about school that led to her overwhelming success. There are many actors and lots of dialogues in her videos. Her original channel is Russian, and CPMs in the Russian segment were relatively low. 

Creating channels in new languages has become an effective way to increase her income from AdSense.

The views on Diana’s additional channels skyrocketed just a few months after the launch.

AIR started testing how this content genre would do in Spanish. When it worked well, they launched channels in Hindi and Arabic. And today, Diana has 40 translated channels that bring her more income than the main one. Overall, Lady Diana has 25.7 million subscribers globally. 

La Bruja Tatty

This Spanish animation channel shows the adventures of the little witch Tatty and her kitty Misifu that give positive emotions to children. AIR Media-Tech has helped the creator translate and localize the content into 10 languages that are constantly growing and showing a stable positive trend.

The growth of theTatty’s Portuguese channel during the first 3 and 6 months

Does your content fit for translation and localization? 

You may wonder if this strategy is relevant to your content. There are a number of factors to consider. Here are some of them:

  • Content specifics – the content that is understandable and catchy to various peoples regardless of cultural differences and does not require any specific knowledge is particularly successful. For instance, people worldwide enjoy watching different experiments whatever their cultural differences. And, on the contrary, it’s difficult to achieve a multiplicity of income for comedy channels, since humor differs from country to country. For this reason, content translation and localization work for kids&family, DIY, entertainment, cooking content, etc.
  • Relevance – if your content is evergreen, you’ll likely succeed in new markets. At the same time, channels focused on news or reviews of electronic devices can hardly achieve the same results since the information on these channels becomes outdated very quickly as translation and localization require some time. 
  • Competition in your niche – it’s important to analyze the new target markets before entering them. The less competition, the better. Explore the most popular YouTubers in your genre in the region and check out their content. This way you will understand what your potential audience likes and whether your videos fit this region.

HZHtube Kids fun showing family adventures, Lady Diana with her entertaining videos, and funny animation of La Bruja Tatty fit all of the criteria and succeeded with translated and localized content. 

How to approach content translation and localization

There are several approaches for setting up the process and entering new markets with content translation and localization. The “minimum program” includes adding subtitles to your video. The most challenging tasks here are finding a good transcriber for creating the text version of the video and a translator into the target language. Another option is to use automatic transcription and captioning offered by YouTube or AI-based services. But note that such programs can make mistakes, especially if there are background sounds in a video. That’s why it’s important to find someone who can check the quality of the texts. 

The next approach in terms of workload involves adding multi-language audio. This feature is currently being tested by YouTube among a small group of creators and is expected to roll out in the near future. In addition to transcription and translation, it requires finding a dubbing or a voiceover master to create the translated audio and synchronizing it with the original video. It is vital to work with native speakers and professional narrators who can convey emotions correctly.

The next option is the most complex yet the most promising in terms of business scaling. It includes full-scale translation, dubbing, and channel localization. With this approach, a separate channel for each new language is created and promoted from scratch. Since the newly created translated channels are not yet known to the audience in the chosen market, you’ll have to determine the best promotion strategy. If chosen well, it will result in numerous subscribers to your translated channels and, surprisingly, to your main channel!

In conclusion

If you feel this is a good strategy for your content, it’s a great time to start translating and localizing. Think of the approach that would be the most suitable for you. You can decide to invest your time to learn and carry out the translation process in detail or to focus on creating content and delegate the task to specialists. Whatever you decide, you’re on the right way!

And remember, you can always check with companies that have relevant experience if you have any questions or doubts. 

The world is full of opportunities to monetize your content. So use them and conquer new markets successfully!