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How to find the largest translation agencies
Thread poster: Pavel Zalutski

Pavel Zalutski  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:56
English to Russian
+ ...
Mar 27, 2010

Hello everyone!

Is anyone looking to market themselves to large translation agencies?

In my experience, the most fruitful work came from big translation agencies. Now I'd like to send my info to more such agencies.

But how do I know which translation agencies are worth spending my time marketing to?

I was thinking that one way to compile a list would be to look through the BlueBoard and jot down the companies with most LWA entries. Indeed, the guys I've had great work from all have a lot of LWAs. Seems like a meaningful factor.

If you like this idea, would you want to split the BlueBoard with me so that we browse designated alphabetical sections of it and then compile info into one list? Then we could use that list to market ourselves.

Or maybe you have a better idea...

Looking forward to hearing from you!


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xxxGKolb
English to German
+ ...
some marketing agencies sometimes sell email lists. Mar 27, 2010

Hello!

I sometimes get offers from various countries offering agencies and translators lists, but I am not sure whether they are good. If you are interested I shall send you those mails. They argue that even if one does only 5% business using their lists the investment is back fast in addition to all the future work with those agencies.

With friendly greetings, GKOLB


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jyuan_us  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:56
Member (2005)
English to Chinese
+ ...
The large companies I have worked with Mar 27, 2010

tend to pay very low rates.

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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:56
English to German
+ ...
Why would you prefer large agencies? Mar 27, 2010

The ones who handle approximately 93 languages (of which all of their PMs combined only speak and read five) and boast with thousands of "freelancers"? Hehe, have fun.

If you are looking for good rates and clients who consider you a true and respected business partner, look for the small to midsized ones - or even better - smallish boutique agencies.


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TAKAKO CN6YR
Japan
Local time: 00:56
Russian to Japanese
+ ...
I like this Website Mar 27, 2010

Hello,

Common Sense Advisory
http://www.commonsenseadvisory.com/

"Ranking of Top 30 Language Services Companies"
http://www.commonsenseadvisory.com/Research/All_Users/090513_QT_2009_top_30_lsps/tabid/1692/Default.aspx


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:56
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Not a good idea Mar 27, 2010

From my experience of 15 years I can tell you that in general big agencies are far from being the ideal customer. Yes, maybe they can send you more work, but the rates and the quality of such work and of the dealings with the agency are usually lower.

I have to say that some bigger agencies are actually very good in these areas, but they are the exception.

I'd say that the best ones are the small-to-medium agencies, simply because they operate with a more local strategy, know their customers and industries better, serve them better, and are able to get better rates from them. As for translators, they usually treat good translators with respect, understand their needs, and respond quickly to any need we may have during the process.

It completely puzzles me that you would prefer big agencies, but if that is what you desire, go for it! You will let the better customers for the rest of translators in your language pair.

[Edited at 2010-03-27 06:50 GMT]


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:56
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
A definition of "big agency" please? Mar 27, 2010

Takako Shibuya wrote:
"Ranking of Top 30 Language Services Companies"


Out of sheer curiosity I checked the list and happen to find three customers: two I work for on a daily basis and one who occasionally sends some work. I'd never consider them "a big agency", and would say they are more in the middle. All three are excellent customers that tick all the boxes in my case.

When I think of a "big agency" I think of SDL, Lionbridge, and companies like that.

Maybe the first thing we must clarify is what defines a "big agency".

[Edited at 2010-03-27 08:53 GMT]

[Edited at 2010-03-28 06:07 GMT]


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:56
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Please define Mar 27, 2010

Pavel Zalutski wrote:
Is anyone looking to market themselves to large translation agencies?

Can you please define "a large translation agency"?


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:56
English to German
+ ...
With Tomás. Mar 27, 2010

Large.. big.. huge...

I prefer the GOOD ones. The ones that attend to world market leaders / Fortune 500 companies regularly and successfully. The ones that work with their small bunch of hand-selected Go-To-Translators on a regular basis. THEN you will be swamped with well-paid work.

Interestingly enough - those are the smaller agencies.


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Sara Senft  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:56
Spanish to English
+ ...
I agree with Nicole and Tomás Mar 27, 2010

I would rather work with a GOOD agency, regardless of size. I care far more about how an agency treats me than its size.

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Pablo Bouvier  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:56
German to Spanish
+ ...
How to find the largest translation agencies Mar 27, 2010

Pavel Zalutski wrote:

Hello everyone!

Is anyone looking to market themselves to large translation agencies?

I


Are you looking for big translation agencies of for big translation/money brookers?
Imho, big translation agencies does not exist. Maybe you would better look for the best 10 translation agencies or private clients to work for, independently from its size. Explanation as like the translation agencies ranking has already been given before at this same thread.

[Editado a las 2010-03-27 18:23 GMT]


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 17:56
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
I worked for half a year for one of them... Mar 27, 2010

... and a few times before that.

They were between chaotic and condescending. Average, definitely not GOOD - I second Thomas and Nicole.

[Edited at 2010-03-27 19:55 GMT]


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TAKAKO CN6YR
Japan
Local time: 00:56
Russian to Japanese
+ ...
Big agencies Mar 28, 2010

Tomás Cano Binder, CT wrote:

Takako Shibuya wrote:
"Ranking of Top 30 Language Services Companies"


Out of sheer curiosity I checked the list and happen to find three customers: two I work for on a daily basis and one who occasionally sends some work. I'd never consider them "a big agency", and would say they are more in the middle. All three are excellent customers that tick of the boxes in my case.

When I think of a "big agency" I think of SDL, Lionbridge, and companies like that.

Maybe the first thing we must clarify is what defines a "big agency".

[Edited at 2010-03-27 08:53 GMT]


I think that the definition of what the asker meant is quite clear. Agencies which are large in scale and revenue with more projects, languages, registered translators, employees, branches, and others. He is not asking if it is good or bad to work with "big agencies". He had positive experiences by getting sweet projects from "big agencies", and want to expand his possibility. He is asking how to find the agencies. The link I gave is informative. I like that. Let the asker try and register. Why not?

[Edited at 2010-03-28 08:09 GMT]


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José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 13:56
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Dead right! Mar 28, 2010

Nicole Schnell wrote:
If you are looking for good rates and clients who consider you a true and respected business partner, look for the small to midsized ones - or even better - smallish boutique agencies.


As my late mother used to put it:
"Would you rather be the head of a herring or the tail of a whale?"

In a smaller agency you may be - or be close to - their #1 translator for a certain language pair and specialty, and will be treated accordingly.

In one of the largest agencies, you will be just one in a crowd: they won't notice you, they won't value you, they won't miss you. If you do your thing right, they'll let you stay in the crowd. If you botch it up just once, they'll get you replaced in a heartbeat. No matter how keen the PM may sound to you, s/he is just an employee there, and the company will consider you as an expendable labor supplier.


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Pavel Zalutski  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:56
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Let's keep this discussion going Mar 29, 2010

Reading your posts is like going to a university! God bless ProZ forums!

To TAKAKO and TOMAS: Thanks for the link, Takako! I will definitely contact the Big 30. And thanks for speaking the definition of "big" for me. This is exactly what I meant: "Agencies which are large in scale and revenue with more projects, languages, registered translators, employees, branches, and others."

I agree with SARA, NICOLE and JOSE that the large agencies don't have as personal of a relationship with you and pay less. The reason I still want to contact them is that, in my experience, work from them has been steady. I seem to get job offers from them all the time.

I've also had experience similar to the one of TOMAS, NICOLE and PABLO: small agencies having a closer relationship with you, supplying you with a lot of work and paying good rates. And everything that they said makes me realize that I should not overlook them.

So, in addition to the Big 30, I would also like to pursue small to midsize agencies, and as one of you put it, the "smallish boutique" agencies.

For the Big 30, my plan is clear: I will use Takako's link.

For the smaller ones, I'm not so sure. There are just so many companies. What would be the qualification process? PABLO said that instead of the list of the BIG ones I should be looking for the list of the BEST ones. Does one exist?


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