Some translators would rather put themselves out as generalists while others pick out a niche to stand out and charge a premium for their expertise in a particular field. But is that a wise decision? When a translator narrows his expertise, it does not guarantee a larger number of clients but yes, developing expertise in a particular field like translation companies in South Africa, will definitely get him more options and lead to a consistency in the professional growth.
Although general translators have a spot in the translation market but choosing a niche like translation services cape town can differentiate a translator from all competitors. So how do you determine what a niche is and how do you select one for yourself?
What is Meant By Niche in the Translation Market?
All translators know what ‘specialization’ means – it refers to a particular area, product, service or field and becoming an expert translator for its content. Translators often specialize in different fields like financial, medical or legal.
Niche, on the other hand, is a particular segment of the market which relates to a specialization. A broader niche refers to legal translators but one can narrow this niche down to property contracts or corporate contract translations. In all cases, the segment of the market is always well defined giving the translator a chance to develop really good expertise in it.
How to Choose a Niche in the Translation Industry?
When selecting a niche in the translation industry, translators can pick a field in which they have basic experience. Perhaps they have had jobs previously in that field or have some sort of qualification. A translator can become a specialist in a niche after years of experience and learning and there are some aspects which he can consider in order to identify and select the right niche. Here is what to ask when doing so:
What Do I Like?
Building a proper career in translation industry because you’ve had work experience previously, makes sense. You’ve invested time and you’ve learned about it so continuing in this direction is the way to go. However, it is not something you like or enjoy then it can become overbearing in the future. As a translator, you must really have a passion for this field. If you don’t find this field exciting, you won’t be spending time and resources in learning more and as a result, you won’t’ be able to connect with your audience. Translation requires all translators to keep up with industry trends. So consider what you like and choose a niche which you will enjoy researching and learning about in the longer run.
What Can I Offer?
No matter what niche you choose, make sure you know what it will take to become an expert in that field. Analyze and review your skill set and make a list of all the service that you can offer to your clients. Each market requires a different set of skill set and abilities which can open growth opportunities for translators. For example, some translators can offer document translation services while others can offer interpreting services. Another detail to consider is the work environment. Thanks to technology, translators can work remotely and online but some industries would want the translators to have regular meetings in person. Ask yourself if you are more comfortable working remotely or you can travel to and from an office for a specific specialization.
Who Are My Clients?
An important consideration when choosing a niche in the translation industry is the type of people you can and want to work with. A very narrow niche may not get you the number of clients you’d want. In this case, you can consider other options and try another field.
Do I Comply With the Regulations?
Some niches call for one hundred percent accuracies such as medical and legal translations. These come with strict requirements and you might require some sort of certification or pass exams to do the job. Such requirements are fulfilled only when you have the will, money and time. Ask yourself if you are ready to do this when picking a particularly regulated niche.
Will This Niche Grow A Market?
Translation business is long term and you should think on the same lines. You must know your market really well to grow in it and therefore, selecting a niche which is sustainable is crucial.
With machine translation and tech improvements on the rise, some niches may not grow so much which can make it very hard for you to land more clients. Research and find out if a particular niche will pay enough in the long term and if it is sustainable by human translators.
There are a number of such external and internal factors which can influence the niche you pick for yourself. The translation industry is evolving and you need to make sure the niche you pick will evolve too for your own professional growth. Choosing the right niche can do wonders for you as a translator in terms of learning and in terms of financial growth.