Case Study:
translating and editing E-Book for Dapresy

Translating from German to English and simultaneously editing an e-book about data visualisation for market researchers.

Challenge

Dapresy’s Chief Product Officer was writing an e-book about new ways to present research data digitally using dashboards and infographics. As a non-native speaker of English, he sought the help of meaning to translate then edit the e-book so as to ensure it would be clear, easy to read and in a style that would make it accessible to the widest business audience possible. 

Outcome

The translation and editing was accomplished in one step, saving countless hours and frustration. This meant that from the start, the English version of the text was written in a language that would make sense to the readers. This was possibile due to German language skills and deep understanding of market research within meaning.

I think the combination of receiving feedback on language and at the same time receiving feedback on content made it really, really efficient.

Alexander Skorka, Chief Product Officer at Dapresy

Solution

    • Alexander wrote most of the original text in German, his native language.
    • meaning translated each chapter and provided detailed input on industry-specific terminology and phraseology to use.
    • Alexander was then able to revise each chapter, now working in English, reviewing his text and making further improvements 
    • meaning performed an in-depth edit once the text was complete, to ensure internal consistency and to keep the book as short and concise as possible.
    • Once the e-book had been laid out by Dapresy’s designers and contained all the illustrations Alexander had prepared, meaning performed a final ‘proofing’ check to ensure it was error-free and ready to publish.

Approach

Alexander had two complementary objectives in seeking a partner to work with on the e-book. The first was to find someone that could ensure that his original manuscript in German was transformed into clear, highly readable English. The second was to work with someone with expertise in the research industry that could edit the text and prepare it for publication. 

Alexander explains: “As a non-native speaker of the language, it was important for me to have help with the English. And a core benefit of working with Sheila Wilson was that, as a German speaker, she could make sense of what I was writing and turn that into English that was easy to read on the one hand, and still expressed the precise meaning of what I thinking when I wrote it. 

“The second was that I could see meaning had a lot of expertise in market research and in technology. When you are writing text, it is easy to think what you are saying makes perfect sense, so I really appreciated [meaning] challenging me on things that were not 100% clear, or commenting that some things were too detailed, others where details were missing.”

Working with meaning also allowed Alexander to overcome a perennial issue when working with a translation agency, in dealing with industry jargon or technical terminology. “It is easy to find someone that can translate the text,” says Alexander, “but you also need to ensure the translator is familiar with the terms used in a specific industry, and this is exactly what Sheila provided. A core benefit of working with Sheila was that she was able to take my text, whether I’d written it in German or written it badly in English and make sense of what I was saying.”

As soon as the text had been translated, meaning also forwarded suggestions for clarifications, or even additional arguments for Alexander to explore in the text. He observes: “I think the combination of receiving feedback on language and at the same time receiving feedback on content made it really, really efficient.”

The finished e-book ran to over 70 pages of text and illustrations.  Alexander concludes: “The feedback I received from all over the world was that it was very easy to read, which I liked, because [reading articles on] business topics can sometimes be hard [work]. They tell me you can read it in 2-3 hours, which is very helpful. Today we are dealing with so much information that it can be hard to find the time to read everything.”

 

Results

    • E-book fully translated into native English, working from rough drafts provided in German
    • Text written in such a way that it was accessible both to audiences already familiar with the subject and those with little prior knowledge
    • Efficient process that meant the author received both translated text and feedback on the content at the same time.
    • Substantial reduction in the amount of time the author needed to spend on editing and revising his text.
    • A highly professional 70-page e-book created, demonstrating the company’s thought leadership in a specialist area.
    • The e-book has generated high levels of interest and praise from clients and prospects for its clarity. 

About Dapresy

Dapresy develops software for presenting market research and customer feedback data visually. Its flagship product, Dapresy Pro, is a web-based platform that will process, analyse and present survey and respondent data in a variety of interactive formats, from slide decks of charts through to dashboards and dynamic infographics.

Read Alexander Skorka’s e-book: Five Steps to Compelling Dashboard Design

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