Translation and Localization Tips for Cryptocurrency ICO’s

bitcoinIt wasn’t that long ago that cryptocurrencies were considered just another “fad” that would fade.

Not so much. Bitcoin took off, and other cryptos soon followed. The concept, while not understood by many, is that financial transactions can take place in an environment of digital, rather than fiat, currencies. And it’s happening. Those transactions backed by blockchain technology are secure, immutable, and hold a trust factor that traditional transactions cannot achieve.
It is no wonder, then, that many startups are looking for investment capital by establishing a cryptocurrency and conducting an initial coin offering (ICO).

Cryptos are, By Nature, “Global”

For an ICO to be a success, it must attract many investors, including those from other countries.
The critical piece to attract investors is the White Paper, often compared to the business plan of a startup. And because there are fraudulent ICO’s, the white paper can demonstrate that yours is legitimate.

Elements of an ICO White Paper

  • Purpose: What is the goal of the project and what purpose does it serve. It should be unique and not filling an existing niche.
  • Process: A brief explanation of the technology behind the blockchain that is used. While technical terms are required, it is important to remember that investors are not “techies” – the simpler the better.
  • Feasibility – What are the prospects for the project’s success, based upon applicability to society and the fulfillment of a need.
  • Leadership – What are the backgrounds, experience and qualification of the management team? Reputable people provide authenticity.

Potential investors will review white papers carefully, and because they may be foreign, they will want the ease of reading it in their own language. Translations thus become critical.

Tips for Translation and Localization of White Papers and Marketing Materials

1. You cannot scrimp on translations and localizations for foreign investor audiences. Finding friends or individuals with a cursory mastery of a foreign language will just not do.
2. Experienced natives, of the target language, such as those used by services like The Word Point, will not only provide the accuracy that is required, but they understand the cultural nuances of the target culture and can ensure that those are honored in the translation process, both for the white paper and any other marketing materials that an ICO project will want/need.
3. Pick the languages carefully. Right now, many investors are in China, japan, Russia, and Korea. Begin with these languages first. Cryptocurrency investing seems to be far more popular and prevalent in Asia than in western countries. You can always expand as you go along.
4. Consider retaining the native specialist who has completed your translations and localizations for ongoing needs. Many potential investors will have questions and will pose them in their native languages. Specialists who can respond in kind will add authenticity to an ICO project commitment.
5. Ask the right questions of any translation/localization individual or service you plan to use. What is the experience in ICO white papers? Do the specialist have solid knowledge of the legal details that need to be translated and localized? Can that specialist translate technological terms and jargon for total target language understanding?

The Bottom Line

If you are serious about in ICO for your project, then do it right. First, craft a white paper that includes all of the elements listed above, in your native language. Show enthusiasm for your project, as well as the expertise of your team that will provide the backbone for success.
Above all, get the translation and localization services that will provide foreign investors with confidence – confidence in your professionalism and your willingness to honor their language and their cultural biases.
Cryptocurrency ICO’s are becoming more and more competitive. Do your ICO right and become a major competitor in the marketplace.


Pauline FarrisBIO: Pauline Farris speaks Portuguese, English, Spanish and Italian. She travelled the world to immerse herself in the new cultures and learn languages. Today she is proud to be a voting member of the American Translators Association and an active participant of the Leadership Council of its Portuguese Language Division

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