According to world research, Portuguese is the 7th most spoken language in the world. It is the official language of 10 countries including Portugal, Brazil, Mozambique, as well as having influence within other countries like India and China. During the age of exploration, Portugal was an early leader in expansion. During the Age of Discovery (15th-18th century), the Portuguese sailed and discovered South America and found trade routes to Africa and Asia. These exploration days produced colonies that expanded their influence across several continents which still contain language influence today.
Portuguese is a romance language, derived from Latin, hence its similarities to other romance languages such as Spanish, French and Italian. But unlike its sister languages, Portuguese did not have official spelling standards till the early 20th century! Since Brazil and many other colonies were independent from Portugal by that time and were not consulted about the standards established in Portugal, languages diverged. Over the years, efforts were made to bridge the differences, but more work is still required.
Portuguese Voice Over Variances
In additional to differences in spelling, there are many varying expressions and spoken accents in use today across the Portuguese speaking worlds. Brazil, being the most populous among them with the same Brazilian Portuguese dialect virtually spoken by all its 200 million inhabitants, and the largest of the Portuguese economies today, weighs in heavily on where the momentum is. This is why Brazilian Portuguese Voice Over for business videos, flash, online educational material or eLearning and other business assets containing audio tracks is usually the de facto standard.
But when planning Portuguese voice over projects, you have to keep in mind that spoken Brazilian Portuguese and Iberian Portuguese for Portugal or African countries have large differences. While the meanings and words are similar, they are not only spelled differently, they are often pronounced differently. When targeting the E.U. or Mozambique for instance due to the economic growth in Africa, do not use a Brazilian Portuguese voice over, as it is less effective than a native Portuguese voice talent or a voice that speaks in a Mozambican accent.
Think Multilingual Voice Over
A good strategy is to apply multilingual voice over when targeting Portuguese-speaking peoples. You can translate your audio script into Brazilian Portuguese and have the translation edited for Iberian and other Portuguese flavors. You can then record voice over tracks for each Portuguese dialect that is of importance to you and give users the ability to chose the track of their choice. By doing so, you apply a cohesive but localized strategy to cover Europe, African and South America.
At GlobalVision, translations are created with the utmost care targeting the specific markets you desire and then creating the audio tracks for each and everyone of them. We lend you our multilingual voices to help you properly and accurately communicate with all your international audiences, as if they are your own!
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