Working with an Interpreter: 5 Tips for a Successful International Event or Conference

Working with an Interpreter: 5 Tips for a Successful International Event or Conference

You are all set for your international event or conference.  You have the perfect location and all the details set up, but how can you ensure that your message will be relayed properly to your multi-lingual audience?  The right interpreter can be the difference between success and disaster, so finding one to fit your exact needs is crucial.  Here are our 5 tips for how to hire and use the perfect interpreter for your next international event or conference.

1. Know the Difference between Consecutive vs Simultaneous Interpreting

Knowing which type of interpreting service you need for your project is a crucial element to ensuring a successful event or conference. The two most commonly used types of interpreting are consecutive and simultaneous.

Consecutive interpreting is where the speaker pauses after several phrases or sentences, allowing the interpreter time to relay the message to the audience. Usually consecutive interpreters are a popular option for informal and some formal occasions including:

  • Interviews
  • Film sets
  • Photo shoots
  • Client-attorney meetings
  • Court depositions
  • Medical consultations

Simultaneous interpreting is when participants wear headphones and an interpreter listens to information and relays it while the speaker continues to speak.   Typically, simultaneous interpreters are used in formal, large group settings including:

  • Diplomatic conferences
  • Business or board meetings
  • Training sessions
  • Courtrooms
  • Tours

2. What to Look For in an Interpreter

Selecting a professionally trained interpreter who is able to speak the language pair with fluency is your number one objective.  The interpreter’s background and experience should be carefully assessed when determining their ability to meet your event or conference needs.   References or ratings can also give some insight into the quality of an interpreter. The Global Media Desk has developed a meticulous selection process, which ensures our clients always work with the most seasoned professional interpreters, with proven track records and a commitment to excellence that practically guarantees complete success.

3. Brief the interpreter

Ensuring the interpreter understands your goals and expectations beforehand is imperative for a strong collaborative event or conference. Think of the interpreter as an extension of your team. Provide information, technical vocabulary and any other documents to the interpreter well in advance of your event, so she or he has enough time to research any unfamiliar terms or items. A well prepared interpreter is the best interpreter.

4. Dos and Don’ts for Interpreting

To effectively use an interpreter remember the following:

  • Speak clearly and slowly
  • Avoid long or complex sentences
  • Skip the jokes or humorous stories, these typically do not translate well
  • Advise your group to speak one at a time
  • Maintain eye contact with your audience when possible not your interpreter
  • Try not to interrupt your interpreter
  • Eliminate excessive gestures or hand movements

5. Avoid technical hiccups

Do a proper sound check and test of all equipment with the interpreter to make sure your message is crystal clear.  If an interpreter can’t hear the speaker properly they won’t be able to interpret properly.  Always have paper and pen available in case the interpreter needs to take notes for any reason. Provide bottled water for the interpreters. Remember their voice is a tool.

Global Media Desk has been helping governments, global businesses, NGOs and every conceivable type of client find the highest quality of interpreters and language services around the world for over 15 years. If you have questions about interpreting or other language services, please do not hesitate to contact us or fill out a free quote request form to see how we can make your event a complete success.

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By Danilo Borges/ Licença Creative Commons Atribuição 3.0 Brasil

4 Ways Sporting Events are Upping the Game in Digital Marketing

Engagement, passion and connection are what turn your average customer into a devoted fan. No industry understands this more than the sports industry. Sporting events from around the world are finding new and inventive ways for technology and media to create new fans and we all can learn a few tricks from the experts.


Aerial photography and video is the wave of the future and the sports industry is charging full steam ahead. All access angles, impossible shots and never before seen footage are just a few of the ways fans are being introduced to a whole new look inside their favorite teams. The Sacramento Kings are prospecting the use of drones for exclusive in-arena camera angles and instant replays to be delivered straight to their fans’ smartphones. Digital Marketing tip: Drones can give a new spin on an old concept. Use it to give your customers an exclusive view.

Social Media

A recent study by Cisco found that 57% of sports fans prefer to watch games at home on their television. So how do you engage with a fan who is sitting at home? Until recently it was almost impossible, but now social media makes it easy. Platforms like Instagram, Snap Chat and Facebook provide a plethora of ways to make fans a part of the experience by sharing videos, comments, content and photos. Digital Marketing tip: Social media is your front line to engage with customers. Use it to turn a passive customer into an active one.

Mobile Technology

Imagine getting an alert on your phone as soon as you walk into a stadium notifying you a seat upgrade is available to purchase directly on your phone. Once seated, you use your smartphone to order up a plate of nachos and beer to be delivered right to your seat, never missing the action. And, when nature calls, bring up the stadium’s app to direct you to the nearest restroom with the smallest wait time. In case you do miss an important play, use your phone to watch an instant replay via the stadium-exclusive video feed. These are all technologies being integrated into smart-arenas all over the world to keep you connected to the thing you love – the game. Digital Marketing tip: The possibilities for mobile technology are endless! Use it to make your customer’s experience as quick, helpful, easy and care-free as possible.

Mobile Video

With 70% of fans bringing a mobile device to the stadium, capturing this new “second screen” viewing system  opened up a whole new avenue for marketing to sport fans. The NBA partnered with YouTube to host highlight compilations and recaps of recent games to let fans watch on demand. Some stadiums even include special fan invitations to pre-game warm-ups and post-game press conferences. Digital Marketing tip: Mobile video marketing should be a part of every marketing plan. Use it to capture your customer’s attention at every phase.

Want to find out more?

At the Global Media Desk we have been providing video production crews, photography, and drone services for global sporting events around the world for fifteen years. Please contact us for future media needs for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, UEFA Euro 2016 in France, 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia or other global sporting events.

Follow us on social media for news, advice, info, and tips about production, photography, and language services:


Photo credit: By Danilo Borges/ Licença Creative Commons Atribuição 3.0 Brasil [CC BY 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Neumann U87 Condenser Microphone by Will Fisher, on Flickr

5 Quick Tips for Translating an Animated Film or T.V. Series for Global Distribution

When preparing an animated feature film or Television series for international distribution, proper localization is key to connecting with regional audiences. While some productions may only need a direct translation during post-production, most will want cultural adjustments to ensure the film or series remains relatable.  The following quick tips highlight a few key areas to pay attention to when preparing your next animated hit for global screens.

1. Focus on Quality

A high quality dub that is tailored specifically to a particular region is vitally important in any translated film. Disney’s Frozen, for example, was an international box-office success partially because of its high quality localization efforts.

  • The Frozen song “Let It Go” was translated to over 41 languages and multiple voice actresses where carefully selected throughout the world to portray the lead of Elsa.

2. Use Consistent Dub Voices

Consistency with the use of voice actors, especially in an animated T.V. series, can be a sticking point for many loyal international fans. Each character should have a specific vocal personality that is maintained throughout the film or series.

  • In the Hungarian dub of Family Guy, the series was inconsistent with the voice actors used to portray certain characters and fans were quick to alert the creators about the changes.

3. Pay Attention to Culture

The diversity of world cultures can pose a unique challenge for translators, especially for films that rely heavily on American references like DreamWorks’ Shrek. The Shrek films strike a delicate balance of portraying humor while remaining relevant to the region.

  • In the Polish dub of Shrek, instead of Donkey being threatened with being kicked, it was changed to Donkey being threatened with going to the meat house because it is a cultural reference to a Polish fairy tale.

4. Location, Location, Location

The setting of an animated film or T.V. series should relate to the audience and be more of an integrated effort rather than a post-production afterthought. In an effort to appeal to U.S. audiences, Pokémon producers adjusted dubs and visuals as the series progressed.

  • The Pokémon series initially attempted to reference a fantasy location, but recognizable Japanese landmarks hindered the illusion. Producers later made the show setting more culturally neutral and also included visuals of typical American foods.

5. Customize Visuals

While proper translation and portrayal of vocals is vitally important to the localization of an animated production, the visuals can really drive the audience connection home. Pixar understands the need to be visually relatable to their international audiences, which is reflected in the efforts of its localization team.

  • In Pixar’s Monsters University, the studio replaced writing on everything from cupcakes to report cards prior to its international releases.
  • A vision of a hockey game in Pixar’s Inside Out was replaced with a soccer game to be more relatable to U.K. audiences.


Want to find out more?

At the Global Media Desk we have been providing video production, photography, and interpreting services around the world for fifteen years. We have seen and done it all! Please contact us with any questions you may have about translating or production services in a specific country or request a free online quote to see how we can make your project a complete success.

Follow us on social media for news, advice, info, and tips about international film production, photography, and language services:


Photo credit: Neumann U87 Condenser Microphone by Will Fisher, on Flickr

Pigeon Point, Tobago by neiljs, on Flickr

Top 5 Islands with the Best Film Incentives

Want to get stuck on a beautiful, exotic island for your next production shoot?  Islands around the world boost some hefty film incentives which make them that much more enticing as a shoot location. With 15 years of experience providing video production services globally, we pinpointed the top 5 islands with the best film incentives for your next film or television shoot.


Malta: view from Valetta by Berit Watkin, on Flickr

Feature film clout, eclectic scenery, and substantial film incentives highlight why this island nation has appealed to so many foreign productions. Located south of Italy in the Mediterranean Sea, Malta has provided the backdrop for multiple high profile features, such as World War Z, Gladiator, and The Da Vinci Code.

27% Cash Refund

  • 25% cash refund is available for all foreign feature film, television, and documentary productions.
  • 2% additional cash refund available if Malta is featured culturally in production.
  • Tax credits vary depending on capital investment or value of wages.


Île aux Cerfs by clry2, on Flickr

The breathtaking scenery, wide-ranging environments, and international film tax credits offered by this island nation easily earn it a spot on any location scouts must-see list. Found in the Indian Ocean and off the southeast coast of Africa, Mauritius provides majestic vistas ranging from white sand beaches and primal forests to stone-cut waterfalls and rugged peaks.

30% Tax Credit

  • 30% tax credit on all international productions of feature films, televisions series, and documentaries.
  • Tax credit available on all qualifies production expenses within the Mauritius.

Canary Islands

la gomera by Till Krech, on Flickr

Blending a diverse selection of scenery and year-round enviable weather, the Canary Islands welcomes international filmmakers with deep film incentives and world-class production support. Nestled off the southern coast of Morocco, the Canary Island’s varied scenery has been featured in films, such as Fast & Furious 6, Clash of the Titans, and the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

35%-40% Tax Credit

  • 35% tax credit for all international feature films in the region.
  • 38%-40% tax credit for international coproduction of feature films, television episodes, animated films, and documentaries.


trinidad by Martin Abegglen, on Flickr

Easily accessible locations, quick access to varied scenery, and generous cash rebates highlight Trinidad as a go to spot for international filmmakers. This Caribbean island provides a multitude of backdrops ranging from white sand beaches, weathered ruins, and dense swamps to historic military forts, modern city centers, and urban areas.

35%-55% Cash Rebate

  • 35% cash rebate on all local production expenses of feature films, television series, documentaries, and animated films.
  • Up to 55% cash rebate on qualifying local labor costs.

Vancouver Island

Saanich Inlet by David Stanley, on Flickr

Vancouver Island has played host to hit films and television productions as diverse as its scenery. This Canadian island has provided the backdrop for such notable productions as Twilight Saga: New Moon and Eclipse, X-men Trilogy, and the X-Files series. With a higher available tax credit for international film productions and the ability to emulate everything from Central Park to Napa Valley, this island has much to offer.

35%-78.5% Tax Credit

  • 35%-78.5% tax credit for all international film and television productions.
  • Filmmakers can stack incentives offered.
  • Certain genres are excluded including reality television, advertising, and live sports events.

Find Out More

At the Global Media Desk we have been helping productions find the highest-quality local crews in cities and countries around the world for over 15 years.  We are here to help!  Please contact us with any questions you may have about filming in a particular region or fill out a free quote to see how we can make your production a complete success.

Photo credits:
Pigeon Point, Tobago by neiljs, on Flickr
Malta: view from Valetta by Berit Watkin, on Flickr
Île aux Cerfs by clry2, on Flickr
trinidad by Martin Abegglen, on Flickr
la gomera by Till Krech, on Flickr
Saanich Inlet by David Stanley, on Flickr