Case Study

End-to-end video localization for Swiss Precision Diagnostics

Discover how the leading global supplier of home pregnancy and fertility/ovulation tests partnered with Acolad to run a complete video localization service for more than 40 markets.


Swiss Precision Diagnostics GmbH (SPD) is a world leader in the research, design and sales of advanced consumer diagnostic products. It is best known for its Clearblue® home pregnancy and fertility/ovulation tests, a range of products designed to empower women with a better understanding and management of their reproductive health. Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, SPD employs more than 170 people and is a joint venture between Procter & Gamble (P&G) and Abbott.

The Challenge

The brand that SPD is best known for is Clearblue®, familiar in many countries all over the world and trusted by millions of women for its accuracy and simplicity. SPD has been acknowledged as a true industry pioneer and its products have been featured in many television programs and films, including most recently Bridget Jones’s Baby.

SPD’s goal is to provide relevant diagnostic tools, which are accurate, easy to use, and affordable. The company’s tone is authoritative, but also very close to, and supportive of women. Video content, used in a variety of ways, is one of the key types of media the brand uses to drive its brand familiarity and trust. The nature of the video content is both educational and short-form advertising. It is deployed in the brand’s YouTube channel and website, but is also used across the marketing program, from Facebook to television broadcasts.

The original master video content is produced centrally in English, and then due to the global reach of the products, each video requires translation and localization. SPD marketing materials appear in 37 different languages in more than 40 different countries, mainly in Western Europe, North, Central and South America and most Eastern European countries.

Prior to working with Acolad, each video adaptation was either managed locally by each country or, in some cases, managed by an agency with a presence in several countries. This was a highly decentralized process and at times could be costly and time-consuming. It was also harder to protect against a nuance of language, culture, tone of voice or brand asset being missed or interpreted incorrectly in a video.

When your brand (and ultimately, sales) relies on being authoritative, a market leader and an expert, the communication messages are critical and have to be consistent and correct globally. Acolad had already been providing very successful translation services for SPD, so it was a natural next step to speak with Acolad about possible solutions for video localization.

The Solution

The Acolad Account Manager for SPD noticed the team was receiving a number of video scripts for translation, so approached SPD to propose that Acolad provide their video localization services.

SPD considered several options but because of the strength of the long-term partnership with Acolad decided to embark on a test project. This was executed successfully and SPD evaluated Acolad’s performance with the stakeholders in each country to capture their input too. The project validated Acolad’s capabilities and likely cost-effectiveness, so SPD made the decision to assign to Acolad all of its video adaptation/localization projects from that point onwards.

Such mass localization is a highly complex and involved process and there are few companies beyond Acolad with the breadth of skills and expertise to be able to provide such an end- to-end localization service on such a scale. Another benefit for the client is Acolad’s flexibility. The Acolad team flows to the work as required, there is no fixed program of work at the beginning of the year. This means the client has full control over changing their marketing plans and the assets required to support those plans, as they need to.

Each project usually begins with a kick-off call between SPD and the Acolad creative team, including the Director of the voiceover recording, so it can be understood what the purpose of the video is, what SPD wants to achieve with the communication, and what the tone of voice and overall feeling is. After this kick-off call Acolad provides SPD with feedback regarding the voiceover, as English is shorter than most other languages. If it is anticipated that the localized voiceover will take longer, and so will create problems when synchronizing the audio to the video, Acolad will report this to SPD early in the process to receive shorter alternatives.

SPD then shares the final English storyboard, which the Acolad team translates into the local language and returns it for approval (by the Country Manager and in some cases the Board of Health). Once approved, Acolad records the voiceover and adapts the video into the local language. The draft version of the video is submitted to SPD, who send it for review to the Country Managers and the Board of Health in the countries where it is necessary. Following its approval, Acolad makes any final changes and delivers the final version to SPD. 

The Result

Prior to working with Acolad on video localization, each SPD market managed their own video localization. Now everything is centralized via a single point of contact at SPD and Acolad, having a significant impact on optimization of resources and reducing cost. Acolad has always used an SPD glossary to ensure consistency of translation and tone of voice, so the entire end-to-end process is effective and efficient.

Acolad provides a suite of services that includes not only translation, but the engineering elements of the video localization and a deep understanding of SPD’s products and markets. This experience and excellence of delivery means that SPD views Acolad more as a partner than supplier, offering huge value that is difficult to find elsewhere. 


The Acolad Life Sciences difference

The customer experience is central to all Acolad’s services and this certainly applies to the video localization projects with SPD. Neither translation nor localization are an exact science and humans will always make the occasional mistake. But if there are any issues, Acolad always prioritizes addressing them in a quick and efficient manner and puts measures in place to ensure they do not happen again, meaning SPD is continually delighted with the service it receives.

That service even extends to Acolad liaising with the organizations responsible for putting the video through different TV channels in each country. This can be a convoluted process and highly time consuming, this is another example of Acolad delivering huge value for SPD.

Acolad video localization is a pioneering service, with few companies capable of offering an end-to-end solution that even comes close to it. The Acolad team has such a variety of skills, from the actual translations to liaison with broadcast bodies, and from technical editing skills to the overall management of localization for more than 40 markets, that SPD is happy it no longer has to manage all this with a decentralized approach, is in better control of its costs and has more effective localization overall. 

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