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Become a Twitter Master: 5 Tips for Language Translators

Posted on Fri, Dec 06, 2013 @ 16:12 PM

language translatorMany of us dread, or are at least skeptical of, things that are “good for us.” Experience has shown us that if something is healthy or “good for us”— exercising more, eating vegetables, reducing our sodium intake, drinking less alcohol—it’s not only going to lack taste, it’s going to require a bit of sacrifice.

You may not want to hear this, but networking is “good for you,” especially if you are a freelance translator.

Networking may be healthy—not to mention, absolutely necessary—but that doesn’t mean freelance translators have to swallow their souls, sacrifice taste, or become extroverts to do it. If you’re not sure where to start building your language translation network, one of the easiest places to get your feet wet is by using our favorite social networking tool, Twitter.

Here are five simple ways to make Twitter work for you.

Get personal
I’ve been following a handful of blogs and Twitter users for several years now. While I appreciate all of the useful professional advice I glean from their tweets and blog posts, I also love getting a glimpse inside their personal lives.

For example, I follow a certain teacher-technologist named Richard Byrn. At the beginning of every month, he recaps his most popular blogs of the month. In addition to this, he always includes a photo of his dog Max and a short blurb about him. I don’t know why, but I always look forward to hearing how Max’s month went.  If I haven’t been to Richard’s blog in a while, you better believe that his tweet about his pup is going to remind me to stop by.  

Start retweeting
Twitter is a great tool for spreading the word about your blog and translation services, but never forget that social networking isn’t all about you! Start retweeting other language translator’s tweets. This is an easy way to generate content and provide your followers with useful professional information. Furthermore, it’s a great way to nurture relationships with fellow language translators.

Make your “follows” count
I recently read an article revealing that 46 percent of the users following American pop star Katy Perry are fake; that amounts to a total of 46,550,588 “people” who are not really people at all. What these pop stars and the marketers paid by the record company fail to understand is that social networking success has nothing to do with quantity. It’s all about quality.

Spend your time following (and being followed) by the people you are genuinely interested in: other language translators, friends, agencies and potential clients.

Hashtag wisely
You’ll often see tweets that include some random wording preceded by a # or hash symbol. This is a “hash” or “hashtag,” which is a way for people to keep an eye on things in Twitter. If you want to look at who is discussing “#freelance translator,” you can search for all the messages that have “freelance translator” out there in the Twittersphere. This was you can track conversations and see who is discussing the same things as you.  

By using hashtags, you’ll make it easier for other people with similar interests to find your content too.

Start a blog and use Twitter to promote it
Language translators are in the position to make or break the reputation of their clients. One way to showcase your expertise to clients (whose credibility lies in your hands) is by writing about it on your own blog.

Write about your business, your experience in the field, and offer tips to other translators. This is one of the best ways to drum up business, establish relationships with other people in the field, and highlight your knowledge and experience. Most of the free blogging software out there has plugins that allow you to automatically tweet when you publish a blog. Use it!

If you're looking for more ways to up your networking power, we highly recommend checking out our on-demand webinar, Who Knows You? How to Build an Effective Networking Strategy!

Who Knows You Webinar - Watch Now

Topics: Modern Language Translation, Spanish Translation Course, French Translation Certification, Online Translation Certification Arabic, freelance translation, freelance translator, language translator, networking for translators

5 Networking Tips for Language Translators Who Hate Networking

Posted on Tue, Aug 27, 2013 @ 16:08 PM

language translatorSo you’re an introverted language translator who doesn’t like networking. Did we hear you say that it’s self-serving, shameless, superficial and uncomfortable? If we heard you right, keep reading because Devora Zack, author of Networking for People Who Hate Networking, has a few insights that may reframe the way you see this activity.

5 Networking Tips for Introverted Translators

Stop trying to be someone you’re not
There are several reasons introverts avoid networking, but one of the least obvious is the fact that they are following a set of networking rules created by extroverts. The first step is accepting that you are introverted; the second is playing by your own rules. You don’t have to perform, act falsely, or as Zach would say, “contradict the introvert’s natural sensibilities.” We’ll explain more below.

Talk is cheap. Follow-through is priceless
Extroverts are gregarious, at ease in front of a crowd, and have a knack for wooing new acquaintances. Nothing wrong with that, but talk is cheap if there’s no follow-through. What really matters is what happens in the 48 hours that follow the networking event. Did you—whether through email or phone—make a thoughtful, articulate follow-up with that new contact? Do you remember what you talked about with this person? Do you have something you can offer him or her, or are you simply riding coattails?

Make the time you are networking count
Networking is about quality, not quantity. Instead of exhausting your energy trying to connect with everyone in the room, make a solid connection with five people. If you’re an introvert, you’ll like this next part: Instead of attending five conferences a year, put all of your energy into networking at one event.

Volunteer for a job
If you’re one of those introverts that thrives when there’s structure, make arrangements to help out at the event ahead of time. A job will give you the opportunity to work closely with others and provide you with a specific reason to interact.

The first date vs. the high school reunion
We like to think of networking as a first date, not a high school reunion. Feel free to disagree with us, but high school reunions are painfully superficial. There may be a few good conversations, but a good many of them center on who has aged well, who hasn’t, who has the best job, the happiest home, the most hair, the trimmest waist and so on.

First dates are fresh beginnings. You aren’t there to prove that you’re not the same guy who split his pants in gym class or fumbled the ball at the homecoming game in 1989. You’re both there to see what you have in common, what you want out of life, and whether or not the other person fits into those goals.

Networkers aren’t looking for life partners, but they should be evaluating professional chemistry. And when you look at it like that, networking gets a heck of a lot easier.

 

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Topics: Modern Language Translation, French Translation Certification, Online Translation Certification Arabic, freelance translation, freelance translator, Translation Classes Online, language translators, networking for translators

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