IIeX Amsterdam 2019 Podcast Series

IIeX Europe 2019 Conference Series – Kristian Smith – GlobaLexicon

Welcome to the #IIEX Europe Conference Series 2019. Recorded live in Amsterdam, this series is bringing interviews straight to you from exhibitors and speakers at this year’s event. In this interview, host Jamin Brazil interviews Kristian Smith, Co-Founder and Strategy Director at GlobaLexicon

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We are live at IIeX Amsterdam. My guest today is Kristian Smith with GlobaLexicon. Kristian, thanks for joining me on the Happy Market Research podcast.


Thank you very much, great to be here.


Tell me a little bit about GlobaLexicon.


GlobaLexicon’s the biggest specialist market research focused translation agency. Operating worldwide with some very big clients, great portfolio focused on quality, have been doing very well over the last years.


How long has GlobaLexicon been around?


Two thousand four, but the first two, three years were probably in the second bedroom. Then you moved to a shared office of one, two, three. Probably over the last six years is really where we’ve put on the gas.


That’s the right way to do it though, isn’t it? Bootstrap the company, get to know the industry, product market fit.




You’ve been there for eight years now.


Yes, so probably eight years, and then full-time essentially the last four, I would say.


Congratulations on that.


Yes, thanks. We have about 85 employees, so pretty good growth and good referrals as far as new business.


Maybe you could tell us a little bit why companies are choosing to use you guys over some of the competition, because there are a couple other companies out there.


Our key differentiator is we focus quite a lot on the quality aspect. Pricing is competitive, but possibly a little bit above. We focus very much on quality. We have an in-house linguist team, which most of our direct competitors, in fact probably all of our direct competitors, don’t have, in-house QA team versus using interns to quality check your material. Then that comes right up to the PM teams, who then have all of the notes, what we call delivery notes, that go right from the linguist team to the QA team, to the PMs and then out to the client. It’s very client focused. “Hey, we’ve noticed on question five, you’ve used this word, but we would suggest actually, in this market, changing it to this, and therefore the translation would be this instead of this.” There’s a lot of that kind of consultative service.


Language is so complex, because a lot of the communication is set in context. The words that we use in English to describe things versus Japanese, referencing the tea company behind me. That context, oftentimes I think, is overlooked or lost in translations for market research.




It sounds like one of the things that you guys are doing is providing that lens for translation.


Yes, and it’s really, “What is that question trying to ask? What is the preceding question? Where are they trying to go with the research?” Which the team really pays attention to. Eighty-five percent of the revenue is market research, so the team is really focused on that for stuff.


That’s really interesting because market research is, in its own right, a language.




In a lot of ways, you’ve got to be fluent in lots of different…




That’s great.


It’s going well.


If someone wants to get in contact with you, how would they do that?


Quote at globalexicon, G-L-O-B-A-L-E-X-I-C-O-N, dot com, and then the team picks it up. We go from there.


Of course, Kristian’s information will be in the show notes for this episode. How’s IIeX going for you so far?


I had an early flight. My son’s birthday was yesterday, so I stayed with him all day yesterday, and then left at 6:45. It looks very well attended, lots of good energy it seems, so looking forward to getting out there.


Good, I hope it’s a successful show for you. Thanks for joining me on the Happy Market Research podcast.


Thanks very much.