Around the world, the most popular videos from global brands feature locally relevant content. However, producing content in local languages presents a major obstacle. Most Facebook and YouTube videos uploaded by global brands in France, Germany, Korea, and Japan are not optimized for local languages, according to L2’s Intelligence Report: Video.

Many brands syndicate videos produced in the U.S. with additional subtitles and dubbing, particularly in markets such as Korea and Japan. In Korea, for example, only one-third of Facebook videos are in Korean, while another third are dubbed. For YouTube videos, the study finds that 42% are in Korean, while 31% have subtitles and 27% are dubbed. Yet although this strategy may be less costly for brands, it frequently mitigates the power of the original video.

Global Brand Facebook and YouTube Video Translations

While Brazil has a high share of videos in Portuguese, this trend is driven by the small sample size. Only 10% of Beauty and Hair Care brands with significant market share in the country posted videos in Q4 2014.

Estée Lauder Company has come up with an easy way to avoid the challenges posed by language optimization. Estée Lauder brand videos often emphasize images, rather than words. These image-rich videos can easily be distributed across countries, requiring brands to invest only minimally in translating content into local languages.

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