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Euston Station


The short answer is, yes, it might.   Oscar Wilde wrote, "We really have everything in common with America nowadays, except, of course, the language."  Although speakers of American English and British English can understand each other, there are words and expressions that can be absolutely unintelligible to the non-native.


If you need a translation for the UK, you need to work with a native speaker of British English.  If the translation is for a non-UK based website, most websites use American English spelling and terms.  The differences go beyond deciding whether to use "aeroplane" or "airplane":


Vocabulary: Although I know that a "tin" of peas is what I would call a can,  I might be gobsmacked if someone talks to me about the "lollipop lady" (crossing guard).


Punctuation: Americans write "Mr.", "Dr.", and "U.S.".  The British follow the rule that a period (or full stop) is used only when the last letter of the abbreviation is not the same as the last letter of the full word.


Idioms: Many idiomatic expressions in UK and American English are similar: both "touch wood" and "knock on wood" are easily understood.  But, I'd be gobsmacked by someone saying "Bob's your uncle" if I didn't know it meant that something is easy to do.


Dates and Time: Today is 2/10/09 in Nashville, but it's 10.02.09 or 10/02/09 in Cornwall.  In the UK, the 24 hour calendar is used for rail and airline schedules (or timetables as they're called), but people in the U.S. rarely use it.



Image courtesy of DG Jones

Posted By P & L Blog

Los Mejores Blogs en Castellano


Before you launch a Hispanic targeted SEM campaign, consider testing both Spanish and English to see which drives higher conversion rates.  You may discover that a campaign developed for each language delivers the best results.


Google suggests these tips for targeting Hispanics:


Buy keywords in English and Spanish because Latinos search in both languages. Comscore Media Metrix reports that 52% of online Hispanics are English-dominant, 21% are Spanish-dominant, and 27% are bilingual.  


Test different keywords in different DMAs.  Vocabulary can vary in Latin America so tailor your campaigns accordingly.


Send searchers of Spanish keywords to a Spanish-language landing page.  Give them what they're looking for to improve conversions.


Include accented and unaccented versions of your keywords.  Some search engines will deliver similar but different results if the word doesn't have an accent so make sure you appear in all searches.


Many companies have been slow to use SEM to increase their share of the U. S. Hispanic market.  The time and money you invest in developing and testing should give you a competitive advantage in a market that is now bigger than the entire population of Spain.


If you already have results, what has worked for you? 




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American journalists often use the wrong last name when talking about people from Spain and Latin America who use two surnames.   We're here to set the record straight so you never address someone incorrectly.

In Spain, people use two last names: the first is the same as their father's, and the second is their mother's.  Women do not change their names when they marry and they continue using their family name.  If Pedro Rosales Puente marries Emilia Ortiz Olivar and they have a son named Antonio, his full name would be Antonio Rosales Ortiz.


This is confusing to English-speakers who are used to calling people by the last of their names. That would be incorrect in Spain (unless they are famous and want to be called by the less common name.  But that's a story for a different post.).  A story about Antonio Rosales Ortiz may use his entire name at first, but subsequent mentions should be to Mr.Rosales, not Mr.Ortiz.


Posted By P & L Blog

An incredible 90% of the population in 6 Latin American countries and Puerto Rico are users of social networking sites.  The data, included in a recent study from comScore ( do not reflect usage via cell phones.  Given that there are 140 million cell phone users in Brazil and 76 million in Mexico, the percentage of Latin Americans on social networking sites is most likely higher than shown here.


The largest network in Brazil is Orkut, which is owned by Google, while Hi5 dominates in much of the rest of the region.  Facebook is growing quickly, thanks to its launch in Spanish early in 2008.


Social Networks



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