Profile feedback - any comment will be very welcome
Thread poster: Domenico Trimboli

Domenico Trimboli  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:29
Member (2013)
English to Italian
Jul 24, 2013

Hello,

A few days ago I became a paying Proz member. I'm trying to be active in answering KudoZ related to areas I know well, and I am confident that - if I do my homework - Proz will help me building a better client base.

To make the most out of my membership I went through a complete profile revamp. While I have to say I am happy with the final result, I would like to ask you for your precious feedback.

Thank you in advance for your time!

Ciao,
Domenico


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 09:29
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Nothing much to say Jul 24, 2013

I've looked very carefully through your profile and your CV, Domenico, and all I can think of to say is "Well done!". I really can't see that you could market yourself much better on ProZ.com, apart from gaining some of those all-important KudoZ points. They really are useful for your visibility here, as well as being a nice way of filling in the odd moments during the day when you need a break from the job in hand. Check the "My Directory Ranking" feature of the job tab for information on how points improve your ranking.

I don't know if it's too early, but I would advise you to apply for "PRO-Certified" status some time. This would help client confidence, as would membership of a translators' association.

Good luck!


 

ATIL KAYHAN  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 11:29
Member (2007)
Turkish to English
+ ...
More Keywords Jul 24, 2013

I agree with Sheila. Your profile really looks professional. The only minor comment I can make is related to the keywords at the end of your profile. I would try to come up with more keywords for your profile. Almost any word on your CV/resume would do. More keywords mean better chances for your profile to appear in searches.

 

Domenico Trimboli  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:29
Member (2013)
English to Italian
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Jul 24, 2013

Dear Sheila, Dear Atil,

Thank you for your feedback, which I really appreciate.

I'll try to get more KudoZ points, which - as far as I understood - are fundamental to improve my directory ranking. I'll also see what I can do to convince some of my existing clients to leave me feedback here; in the meantime, I can point out any contact from ProZ to my LinkedIn profile.

As far as keywords are concerned, you are probably right that I should work on them. This is something I hadn't considered, but I will try to improve it too.

Thank you again,
Domenico


 

Łukasz Gos-Furmankiewicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 10:29
English to Polish
+ ...
Hai. I iz reads ur stuff. Jul 25, 2013

Hi, Domenico. I've taken a long look at your profile, and here are my suggestions:

1. Perhaps a bit more clarity in your typography. I am not exactly saying it's cluttered or anything, but at the same time you could improve it. I'm not even sure how, perhaps a little more variety here and a little less there, perhaps more whitespace (or less), perhaps more leading (line-height), perhaps some capitals, not sure.

In the featured examples, there is the same amount of vertical space between the header and the end of the previous section as there is between the header and its own list items below. You should rather group the list header with its list items more distinctly (you can use list-style=square or something, to get a different bullet than in the other list above).

Also, there is a full empty line between the underlined featured projects header and the project items, while subsequently there is next to no vertical space at all between the bolded title of the individual project and the italicised description beneath it. This looks odd. But if you remove the empty line I mentioned, then you will still have the empty line between projects where you have 2 of them. IMHO, this is another reason to suggest that you use a square-bulleted ul list (even for a single item), unless you have a better idea.

Plus, you may want more vertical space around the headers which introduce sections in your copy. And larger font size for headers in proportion to their importance.

And I find the medium-blue shade rather odd. You might want to pick something different, either from this list or by increasing/decresing hexx codes gradually in order to maintain consistency with your base dark red and dark green-blue shades. It doesn't have to be a different blue, it can be some other colour, even a legible yellow or orange.

2. Your English is overall very impressive. I'd probably change a thing or two (usually commas after the prepositional phrases with which you often begin your sentences), but nothing that really stands out except that I'd replace, 'I offer clients,' with, 'I offer my clients,' (it just looks odd without an adjective there) and I'd put 'in' in, 'I am experienced [in] translating.' Oh, and I'd probably want to make one decision on the Oxford comma for the entire document and stick to it. There may be other things, I'm a bit too tired for field-grade pedantry right now.icon_wink.gif

3. I would qualify the following opening: 'For your business to succeed there are certain pre-requisites,' (and remove the hyphen). The prerequisites you list thereafter are required to succeed in the kind or part of business that relies on translation, but not in the client's business per se. Your prospective clients might think that you have a translation-centric perspective on things.

4. Oh, right, to improve your typography, definitely use dashes instead of hyphens as appropriate, e.g. to introduce a parenthesis, a thought, a piece of data; keep hyphens inside words.

5. Make really sure you want only 65% for 75% matches and only 50% for 84% matches. I'm pretty sure I have agencies that pay even less, but it's not ideal.

6. Agree on Kudoz points, also writing articles and recording webinars is a good idea.


 

Domenico Trimboli  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:29
Member (2013)
English to Italian
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you and replies Jul 25, 2013

Hi Lukasz,

Thanks for the useful suggestions. It's a pleasure to find someone as crazy... ahem into typography as I amicon_smile.gif

Definitely there's something to do with formatting, but by now I couldn't find anything better than this.
Believe me that we don't want to put together Featured project's header and items... Definitely overfull. At the same time, a squared list looks like a 'wrong' version (if you know what I mean) of the bullet list I've already used. A table would draw too much attention on these items, which are important, but I don't want them to be the first thing readers focus on.
I think I just have to keep on trying different solutions and I'll get to something good... or maybe not.

The serial comma situation is now fixed, as well as a couple other edits, and I played with colors a little bit.
In this regard I see there's clearly room for improvement, but color palette is more about branding and defining a professional image; it's something I'm interested in, but I'll outsource this part to a branding expert when I'll have my logo and website designed, hopefully in a couple of months from now. In the meantime, they just have to be acceptable, and I find they are - more or less.

Last, but not least, you are 100% right when you talk about Fuzzy matches, but there's actually a reason for them being so low. Until know I've been working with direct clients only, which is nice, but at a certain point you come to miss agencies, which would 'guarantee' (at least in theory) the constant workflow every freelance professional needs to make ends meet.
I guess fuzzy matches are more for translation agencies than for direct clients, and these are meant to be introductory rates for them. As soon as I establish 1-2 good working relationships, you'll see them at least 20% higher.

Domenico


 

Łukasz Gos-Furmankiewicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 10:29
English to Polish
+ ...
Moar! Jul 26, 2013

Domenico Trimboli wrote:

Hi Lukasz,

Thanks for the useful suggestions. It's a pleasure to find someone as crazy... ahem into typography as I amicon_smile.gif


Yeah.icon_smile.gif I used to be crazy about the layout and graphical stuff per se, you know, starting in 1998 when frames were new and table layouts were the newfound state-of-the-art whatever, but people had a point when they said web design was 95% typography. And the role of typography is to assist the content (primarily by not making things worse), while the role of the textual content is primarily not to obstruct the message, and so on. This kinda changes perspective.

Definitely there's something to do with formatting, but by now I couldn't find anything better than this.
Believe me that we don't want to put together Featured project's header and items...


At least give headers more space from above than they have from below. You can always put margins expressed in ems or some other relative units to avoid pixel problems. Just use an inline style for margins, I guess.

Definitely overfull. At the same time, a squared list looks like a 'wrong' version (if you know what I mean) of the bullet list I've already used. A table would draw too much attention on these items, which are important, but I don't want them to be the first thing readers focus on.
I think I just have to keep on trying different solutions and I'll get to something good... or maybe not.


Perhaps use a definition list with some styling then, I think. Using bolds and italics boldly (and with some Italian g(i)usto) is classy way to go. Good typographers do use this type of variety, it's only amateurs who shouldn't touch it to avoid murder on the eyes.

The serial comma situation is now fixed, as well as a couple other edits, and I played with colors a little bit.


I usually just play with the numbers on the colours, trusting that more than I do my eyes. Always had good results with this. Or you could use one of the many online colour scheme creation tools to make sure that the multiple different colours you use are all aligned together aesthetically. Generally, this type of alignment makes up a large chunk of an overall professional impression. (As amateurs often can't match colours too well. Playing a numbers game on the hexx codes was my personal way around the problem when I was new.)

In this regard I see there's clearly room for improvement, but color palette is more about branding and defining a professional image; it's something I'm interested in, but I'll outsource this part to a branding expert when I'll have my logo and website designed, hopefully in a couple of months from now. In the meantime, they just have to be acceptable, and I find they are - more or less.


Actually, once you have the logo, you can just pick colours from it. Right now, it's mostly not about what colours you pick but rather choosing the right tints and shades to make sure that the colours you do use (whichever those are) are aligned together. You can go for either seamless integration or contrast, but rather nothing in between. There's gotta be a principle in how the colours are ordered.

Last, but not least, you are 100% right when you talk about Fuzzy matches, but there's actually a reason for them being so low. Until know I've been working with direct clients only, which is nice, but at a certain point you come to miss agencies, which would 'guarantee' (at least in theory) the constant workflow every freelance professional needs to make ends meet.
I guess fuzzy matches are more for translation agencies than for direct clients, and these are meant to be introductory rates for them. As soon as I establish 1-2 good working relationships, you'll see them at least 20% higher.


I understand where you're coming from. And, I think I might have a way to solve your situation here, although one different from what you'd expect. Basically, agencies that actually care will have their own grids and will ask you to accept them (or, worse still, skip you in their search for translators if they believe your idea of a CAT grid is not consistent with theirs, whereas in reality you wouldn't care strongly enough to waste energy arguing the point). On the other hand, you don't want your direct clients to start learning about the CAT thing and pick up on the discounts ("cost savings" to them) that they could claim from you. They'd see it as the frugal thing to do, and you can't really blame them. Thus, all in all, I'd just axe the CAT grid. Unless you have clients with partially repetitive texts and want to use the frugality of CAT matches as your advertising point (the cost efficiency of working with you etc.).


 


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