How to work for a French client with a British agency

How to work for a French client with a British agency

Have you ever worked on some French marketing material?

Have you noticed all the differences between both written languages?

Start with the keyboards: they are different.

And it takes a lot of time for a French person – copywriter or graphic designer – to get used to an English keyboard (and the other way round).

Do you know the rules for punctuation in French?

Do you know the subtle way to use a capital letter after a colon?

And how to hyphenate French words?

Do you master every tricky bit of French spelling (e.g.: ô, â, û, ë, î, ï, œ)?

All these details are part of the French language and any error can be spotted straight away by a French person. More errors set off a warning: they start wondering if they can trust you.

It’s a challenge for a British agency to master such skills and feel able to produce work for a French audience. I work with Trebuchet Creative, a British agency in East Anglia UK that I chose a few years ago when I outsourced some design work for a French project.

Do you lead design or marketing projects between a French client and a British agency?
Or the other way round?
Thanks to the Internet this way of working trans-border is getting more common all over Europe.

Make things easy for both sides:

  • Filter unnecessary comments from your client when you brief the agency
  • Ask for clear information and prompt decisions from both sides
  • Write and share the page plan, the planning, the specifications or any useful information in both languages
  • Use email to communicate and keep record of every step
  • Use Pdf files to comment, correct and validate every step with both the agency and the client: it’s the best way to get to the point (show what you talk about)
  • Add unequivocal English comments to the French copy (or the other way round)
  • Label photos in English to avoid errors (or in French when the agency is in France)
  • Master the jargon of the trade in both languages
  • Keep in mind that on each side of the project people master only one language: bridge the gap all the time.

You are the person who guarantees things to go smoothly: despite the language barrier you have to deliver the project on time and on budget.




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