What We Learned About Establishing a Global Labeling Strategy
July 24, 2015Shannon Rose Farrell
As we continue our educational posts from the Q1 Medical Device & Diagnostics Labeling conference in April of this year, we now want to pass along what we learned in regards to Establishing a Global Labeling Strategy and three key take-aways.
Labeling for medical device manufacturers is becoming more often referred to as “real estate.” Why? Globalization. With manufacturers expanding their reach to new territories, not only do they need to comply with the governmental regulations of these new markets but also translate their content to the national languages with great accuracy. Remember that the more you grow, the more regulations you will need to comply with and the more languages you will need your content translated into; there is only so much “real estate” on those space constrained labels.
Even though entering new markets may seem troublesome there are ways to prepare for such changes, by developing your Global Labeling Strategy. This strategy will enable your company to implement a seamless labeling process that expands across all key stakeholders. A well thought-out and executed Global Labeling Strategy will ensure that by the time content reaches the end-users, it is without error and enhances the user experience.
Three Key Elements in a Successful Global Labeling Strategy
Whether you have a current strategy in place or you are starting from scratch, assessing your current status is always the best place to start. Only then can you map out an action plan to get to where you want to be. In addition, ensure this plan is flexible enough to adapt to the ever changing markets and regulations. At the Q1 Medical Device & Diagnostics Labeling conference early this year, we learned of three key elements that are critical to the success of your Global Labeling Strategy:
1) Global Brand Consistency
No matter where in the world the content is created or modified, your brand should remain consistent across all documentation and collateral. Ensuring corporate band consistency will enable your target audience to recognize your offerings and services right away and prevent market confusion. Colors, logos and key phrases should be identified up front and communicated to all content owners and influencers.
2) Formatting and Design Output
Do you have a corporate style guide for your global content? Whether your content is coming from a content management system or is created within a static file, a centralized and controlled system of output will reduce the opportunity for error and increase the quality and consistency of your overall content. Don’t forget to take into consideration text expansion as your content launches into other languages.
We all know that this is a critical part of launching products and services across the world. Each target region has its own unique requirements which is why it is important to have a language service partner who understands the needs of your industry. The right partner will help you map out a plan to ensure quality, consistency and repeatability within your Global Labeling Strategy. We want to make sure you don’t have to deal with unhappy end-users. The right partner will help reduce your efforts and streamline your processes, acting as an extension to your internal Localization Team.
So, when “real estate” is limited and the demands are high, developing a Global Labeling Strategy across your business will be key to the success of your Localization Program. Establishing Brand Consistency, determining Design Output guidelines and partnering with the right Language Service Partner will allow you to build, maintain and execute a first-in-class Global Language Strategy that will have competitors wondering how you are able to get products and services out with such efficiency and quality, time and time again!
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