Video Localization: How Much Does It Cost?

Video Localization: How Much Does It Cost?

After reading all about the benefits of video localization, you have decided that the time is right to start doing it for your business. You know which region you plan to target, and you have been brainstorming ideas about how to best approach the localized video.

However, now comes the big question that will influence your choices. How much will the video localization process cost? The answer to that question depends on several factors, including:

The Length of the Video

When designing the localization project, the length of the video is used as one of the price determinants. Video length is typically measured in minutes, and when each minute starts, it is counted toward the total. Factors that affect the length include dialog, narration, and music, as well as other elements that use screen time.

The final video might be shorter or longer than the original video, depending on the target language. A video localization services company should be able to provide an estimated length of the video based on its experience with the two languages.

The Number of Words

The total number of words used in the video also affects the cost of the content translation. During the translation phase, the recorded content will be transcribed, and then the word count can be determined.

Alternatively, the price quote can be based on the approximate target word count, which will be affected by whether the text will expand or contract during the translation process.

Fortunately, the translation time and cost can be reduced if the video translation agency uses the following technology:

  • Automatic speech recognition (ASR): This is the process of converting audio content into text. This tool is especially useful when a large amount of content needs to be transcribed.
  • Machine translation: This involves using a computer program to translate text from the source language to the target language. Since machine translators are capable of processing millions of words per hour, the translation time is greatly reduced, which ultimately lowers the cost.
  • Computer-aided translation (CAT) tools: This divides the source content into smaller segments, as well as scans the material for repetitive text. CAT tools help make the translation process more efficient.
  • Translation management system: This is a database that houses all the translated segments, allowing content to be reused. If content was previously translated, such as for a website, then the translated text should be available in this system.

Subtitles, Voiceovers, and Dubbing

Subtitles, voiceovers, and dubbing are methods of ensuring that viewers can understand the video’s content, regardless of what language they speak. Because of their importance to the localization process, as well as their cost, it is necessary to enter into a contract with a video localization agency to ensure they are done correctly.

Here is a look at each option:

  • Subtitles: Through subtitling, anything that is spoken in the video is translated and then added as captions. This option is typically more affordable than voiceovers and dubbing, since it involves only transcription and translation, rather than recordings.
  • Voiceovers: During this process, a narrator is recorded while reading a script in the target language, then that recording is added to the video. One factor that affects the cost is how much the person will charge to do the narration.
  • Dubbing: This service is the process of recording new audio content in the target language, then adding it to the original video. Because of the work involved, as well as the cost of the voice actors, this service is more expensive than adding subtitles and voiceovers.

The Price of Different Languages

Another element that influences pricing is the video’s language combination, especially when it involves a rare language. Translators who are capable of working with such languages can be difficult to find, so their rates tend to be higher. In addition, the cost of living for the translator will be factored into the price, depending on the economic climate of their country of residence.

Project Management Costs

Part of the benefit of working with a video translation services agency is having access to a team of resources, including a project manager, for your video localization. The project manager will collaborate with you from the beginning and will oversee every aspect of the localization, including making sure that all deliverables are met. Although this might seem like an unnecessary cost, a project manager has a key role in the localization process.

Quality Assurance

Simply put, the video localization will not be a complete success without a quality assurance review. During the localization process, there are numerous tasks being conducted, so it is possible for something to be overlooked or done incorrectly.

The quality management team will review all aspects of the video’s localization to make sure the work is precise. This includes focusing on cultural issues, as well as reviewing the content translation, speaking elements, and overall quality of the video.

If you want to bring your video into a new market, localization is vital to ensuring that it meets the expectations, requirements, and cultural aspects of the region. Contact a video localization services company to find out how much your project will cost, and then begin to reap the benefits of sharing your video with a new audience.


Video localization is an essential part of bringing your products to new markets. However, it is vital that you understand the expenses involved before contracting with a video translation agency. Review our cost summary so that you know what to expect when you begin the localization process.

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