Multilingual blogging: When it comes to blogging it can be great to blog in two languages to reach all of your international friends and work colleagues, their friends, travel buddies, other bloggers and so many potential readers. But you have to listen to yourself carefully and evaluate the pros and cons to choose wisely which language to go for.
Which language to go for?
I wanted to do it in English because I was living abroad for over 7 years and only communicated in English – I felt in love with this language and made a lot of new friends who of course do not speak German. My friend Kash, who is a professional travel blogger from the UK, advised me
“Do it in your mother tongue – it is much easier to express yourself in your own language plus Germany`s travel blogging scene is not that big yet compared to the English.”
Multilingual blogging: My greatest advantage and disadvantage at the same time
I decided to go for English. It went very well. Six months later I “expanded” and even went multilingual. I have been blogging multilingual (in English and German) since March 2014, so for more than a year now. When the blog grew, pressure started to grow too. As I have an SEO background, I know how important it is to publish between two or more blogposts per week, grow your backlink profile and optimize your website. It became very time consuming to keep translating everything, optimize the technical site of things and to do content creation and tourism consultancy for my clients.
So, luckily Babs offered me her help and did the translations. I was so super thankful! Nevertheless, she did not have a lot of time either so this was only a temporary arrangement.
Once your hobby becomes a profession…
…you need to work more time efficiently to secure your income. This is why I was faced with the prospect of having to go back to one language only.
“It’s sad because a great motivation behind blogging is the like-minded people who read it, comment on it and even connect with me through this medium. And now one group of readers would be left out.”
Which language would make most sense?
I saw myself in the same situation as when I started back in November 2014. I again researched a lot and called some professional bloggers from my network to ask for advice. They all advised German. I made a Facebook survey to ask my friends and readers: They said English. Great, hahaha! So, I was lost once again.
But this time my tendency was towards German as well. However, I wanted to be sure about it.
I compared pros and cons which helped me to evaluate in order to hopefully make a good decision:
Blogging in German – Pros:
- Better expression in my writing
- Time to write more articles in the same time
- Greater motivation due to less pressure
- More time for other business from which I make a living
- German tourism market and close distance allow for greater income and more orders (bloggertrips, sponsored posts, advertorials, …)
Blogging in German – Cons:
- Lose loyal international readers
- Less reach and less traffic in the beginning
- I also love communicating in English. What should I do now?
Finally, google analytics helped me a lot as well. Even though TravelTelling’s readership is fairly balanced with 48% International readers and 52% German readers, it is the Germans who stay much longer on the website, click more pages and find it more often through organic searches.
Another issue I figured out through experience is that if a tour operator, tourism board or hotel wants to target a specific market through blogger cooperation, they choose a blogger who serves readers from exactly this market in the market`s language. In my case this would be the German market.
I think this was probably one of the hardest decisions I needed to make. However, what I have decided on is even though I will blog in German from now on, I will keep my social media channels multilingual.
And I will also do some posts and guest articles in English to hopefully make you stay with me as I do not want to lose you, my international readers and friends!! :)
Let me have your opinion
I would be both delighted and excited to hear what you think about it. Just leave a comment :)