Cox Begins “Transcreating” Spanish

Cox Communications announced yesterday that it is rolling out Spanish-langauge bills in selected markets. Here is the press release.

I found an interesting new term in the release: transcreating. This is just another term for localization, and I’m not sure I like it any better. But its use does underscore the limitations of terms like localization and internationalization. Here is the quote:

Cruz noted that Cox is the first major cable company to offer customers a “bundled bill” in Spanish, meaning that the new billing feature is available with not only Cox Cable, but also Cox Digital Telephone and Cox High Speed Internet. As with Cox’s current billing options, customers of multiple Cox services who choose the new Spanish-language bill can elect to receive a single bill or separate bills for each service. “Certainly, there is much more to offering a billing statement in Spanish than simply translating the existing bill. We took great care in ‘transcreating’ our statement to ensure that every section is clear, understandable and culturally relevant to our Spanish-speaking customers,” Cruz noted. “We also looked carefully at our customer service functions to ensure we offer excellent customer care at all levels of contact. This includes having customer service representatives who speak Spanish. We’ve also enhanced our web site, http://www.cox.com , to allow customers to view their Spanish- language bills and access other online customer support features in Spanish.”

    When Cox launches the Spanish support pages for the San Diego market, I’ll provide more detail. However, if all they’re doing is adding a language preference option on the customer’s account information page, I doubt that this will be enough to ensure widespread usage. Cox needs to launch a full-scale Spanish Web site. Perhaps support is the first step.

    As a side note, in our recent report we found that marketing initiatives tend to be what drive Web localization, not support initiatives. Cox appears to be an exception to that trend.

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