Founded in 1965, Benetton is a global clothing and fashion brand with a network of over 5,000 stores worldwide.
Known for its original “United Colors” publicity campaign, Benetton has never shied away from covering controversial topics, ranging from culturally relevant, deeply provocative to shocking and infamous.
It came as no surprise when in 2016 Benetton, covered the subject of Women’s empowerment worldwide, to raise awareness of the brand’s heritage. The campaign “A Collection of Us” was developed by one of Amsterdam’s top advertising agencies, in the form of a 3.5 minute video showing the extraordinary power every woman in the world possesses. The campaign successfully helped present a capsule collection of knitwear designed to celebrate over five generations of women’s clothes.
Naturally Benetton wanted to reach an international audience with this video campaign and therefore required the best creative linguists to help them with transcreation of the voiceover audio. Subtitling was provided in 9 languages including French, German, Turkish, Russian and Japanese.
As a long-standing associate to the ad agency, Living Word was awarded the job.
As well as transcreating the audio, we were tasked with providing time coding, back translations of each line, a rationale (where appropriate) and a subtitle check of each final video before they went live.
As this was our first time working on the Benetton brand, it was important for us to choose our translators wisely. Not only did they have to be of the usual high standard, but they were chosen specifically for their creative copy writing experience with similar advertising campaigns and brands.
Some of the translators had actually previously worked on Benetton before, but others had to ‘learn the brand’ in terms of its style, tonality and attitude from the get go. This was solved through the provision of reference materials, previous translations and other brand style guidelines provided by our client.
The English video for “A Collection of Us” with our French subtitles can be found here.
This project went so well that for the next 12 months we assisted in further work for Benetton, adapting their “Diversity is beautiful” and “This is the face of” campaigns, as well as work on various print headlines, narratives and their sport collection leaflets – in over 10 languages.
Living Word continues to play a key role in big brand transcreation and remains the ‘go to’ agency for many high-end advertising agencies across Europe and the UK.
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