The top ten most spoken languages in the world
Often clients enter the global market with great strategy and huge marketing budgets, only to find their message and vision is lost in a market which does not necessarily speak or understand their language. According to the 17th edition of Ethnologue (2013), the top ten most spoken mother tongue languages in the world are:
Knowing what the biggest languages in the world are, the next obvious question any marketing or sales team needs to ask is: what is the market size for these languages? There is little indication as to which languages combinations are mostly translated into and from, but according to a study by Ferdinand Boucau (2005) from the Belgian Quality Translation Association, Western Europe (Germany, France, Italy and the United Kingdom) represent two thirds of the global translation market. He notes that the Scandinavian countries, the Benelux and Portugal in specific spend the most on enhancing their multilingual efforts and it is here where one can notice the weakness of multilingualism in the English-speaking countries. Norwegian, Portuguese, Italian, Dutch, French, English and German have been noted amongst the most translated languages.
Projections from the Language Services Market 2012 report, states that the global industry could reach US$33.5 billion by 2015. With the language services market continuing to grow at a rate of over 12% year on year, one is often asked how it is sustainable taking into consideration the advent of new technologies, machine translations, and even crowd-sourced localization.
Our experience has shown that some factors which are driving this growth include:
- Increasingly global economy
- International trade
- Immigration patterns
- Growth of online content
Therefore, whether you are new to the industry or considering entering the industry you need to be aware that there are about 26,104 suppliers already playing in the field. You need to offer something special to your clients and excellent quality at competitive prices are what will make your clients use your services again and again.