Michael Levot is the Localisation Programme Lead at Canva. He’s spent the last few years building out localisation at design software startup Canva. He’s been particularly involved in developing internationalisation infrastructure for Canva’s continuous localisation pipeline and driving global growth with scalable and inclusive localised marketing. Before Canva, he taught linguistics at the University of New South Wales before joining AI-focussed LSP Appen, where he honed his skills as a computational linguist. He lives in Sydney, Australia with his beautiful and talented partner Lizzie and their spitz-cross Iggy. Outside of work he divides his time between his passions: languages, philosophy, and football.
Canva has reached 4 million to 65 million international monthly users from 4 million with the right localisation approach. If they chose to stay only with English, they would reach etwa 20 million users. Each company is different, however, with the right localisation approach, you can triple your company’s growth like Canva.
“Accessibility is the important one. Accessibility in growth is intrinsically linked by localising your product, make it accessful to more and more markets and more people in each market. So, that is a really important mindset to which to localisation as well. I think inclusion is an increasingly important part of localisation. We talked about translation. I think that is the easiest way to understand what the industry does. We translate text, we translate words in other languages. Everyone understands why that would be useful but there are many other aspects of what we do. To give you one example, we get a lot of feedback from users about the cultural and ethnic appropriateness of the content.”
“We do use various models and experiments to compare the relative value of different levels of investment in localisation or different approaches in localisation. We look at whether users prefer the content as it is translated from English or whether they prefer the original content that has been created in the market. We look at that its impact on the matrix, and its importance to the whole business… The second point of ROI is that spending a lot of time and money on localisation or anything else.”
“We make it fine Machine Translation (MT) doesn’t have too bad an impact on our QA but it does have bad an impact on the user experience. In that case, that is a big impact you need to be aware of and you might go to other way.”
ABOUT THE HOST
Levent Yildizgoren, the author of 'Good Business in any Language', is an award-winning entrepreneur, localisation professional, and a PRINCE2 qualified project manager.
ABOUT THE GUEST
Michael Levot is the Localisation Programme Lead at Canva. He’s been particularly involved in developing internationalisation infrastructure for Canva’s continuous localisation pipeline and driving global growth with scalable and inclusive localised marketing.
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