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Why Language Services Are Critical to the Future of Retail

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 28, 2017

The news this year has been filled with headlines about the “retail apocalypse,” a wave of bankruptcies, store closures and layoffs sweeping the retail sector. But while the situation is critical, it’s possible that reports of brick-and-mortar retail’s death have been greatly exaggerated.

It’s true that online shopping presents a challenge to traditional stores, but only a few of the biggest names in retail are online-only, and even that is changing as giants like Amazon and smaller companies like Warby Parker make forays into the physical world. In addition, consumers continue to prefer shopping in-store, including 70 percent of millennials and 77 percent of Gen Z.

As retailers figure out strategies to survive and thrive, one factor that might not seem obvious to consider is adding language services. Why? 

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Latina Buying Power Is On The Rise

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 27, 2017

In 2016, U.S. Hispanic buying power was bigger than the gross domestic product of Mexico.

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By 2055, Asian-Americans Will Be The Nation's Largest Immigrant Group. Is Your Business Ready?

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 25, 2017

When we say "Asian-American," we are saying a lot. The U.S. Asian population is a diverse one. A record 20 million Asian-Americans trace their roots to more than 20 countries in East and Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent. Each has a unique history, culture, language, and other characteristics.

Understanding these subtleties is essential to any business that seeks to increase its audience within the U.S. Asian community, which projects to be the nation’s largest immigrant group, surpassing Hispanics by 2055.

Here are five of the most significant findings from a fascinating recent study performed by Pew Research:

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Five Retail Insights on Multicultural Buying Habits

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 21, 2017

“Minority” consumers won’t be in the minority for much longer in the United States. Asian-Americans, African Americans and Hispanics already make up a majority of the population in four states and the District of Columbia, and several other states are nearly there. By 2055, the U.S. will not have a single racial or ethnic majority, according to the Pew Research Center.

Given the current size and future growth of these consumer groups as a larger part of the market and growth opportunities, market research firms are making a careful study of the buying habits of multicultural consumers. Paying attention to multicultural buying habits, as well as the media and cultural preferences of these populations, will benefit retailers now and in the future, as these statistics show.

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Could Your Organization Benefit from Video Remote Interpreting? Ask Yourself These Questions.

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on August 2, 2017

One in five of our neighbors here in the United States speak a language other than English at home. That’s more than 61 million people – 25 million of whom say they speak English less than well. Another 28 million Americans are deaf or hard of hearing.

The influence of these diverse audiences is enormous and growing. They are citizens, patients, and consumers. Meeting them in their preferred language builds loyalty, achieves compliance, and increases staff productivity while reducing expenses. The opportunities are clear, but the challenge is that – with hundreds of languages spoken in America today – it is very difficult for any organization to meet this demand.

Video remote interpreting (VRI) is an on-demand platform that provides communication to limited English proficient, deaf, or hard-of-hearing individuals by connecting to a professional interpreter in an offsite location. This is done via camera and microphone on a tablet, smart phone, or desktop, using an Internet or cellular connection. VRI reduces the risk of misunderstanding by capturing body language and facial expressions to read visual cues.

Before implementing VRI, your organization should discuss the needs of your audience and how video will fit into your language access plan. Take the time to have this discussion with your front-line staff and any other key stakeholders. Here are a few questions to prompt discussion:

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Does Your Call Center Really Need a Language Services Provider?

Posted by Linda Brown on July 12, 2017

Considering that one in five Americans speaks a language other than English at home, it’s inevitable that your call center will have customers who prefer to conduct calls in their own native language.

You likely already have interpreters (or at least bilingual employees) on staff to meet these needs. Perhaps you’ve also considered working with a language services provider. If you don’t already have one, you could be missing opportunities to make stronger connections with customers.

Here are just a few ways a language services provider can add value to your call center.

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#FinHealthMatters: The Role of Language In Financial Literacy

Posted by Greg Holt on June 27, 2017

For too many, the American Dream feels like a dream deferred.

The harsh reality is that more than half of all Americans (57 percent) struggle to manage their day-to-day financial lives, according to the Center for Financial Services Innovation. That’s 138 million people who aren’t thinking about saving, investing or retirement planning because they’re just trying to get by until their next paycheck.

Just as the medical community has called attention to the importance of physical fitness in combating health problems, the CFSI is sounding the alarm about the importance of being in good financial shape. Today is FinHealthMatters Day, a day dedicated to improving financial health for everyone. That includes not just customers of traditional financial services, but those still at margins or completely outside of the system. When consumers have good financial health, they make better decisions, are more economically stable and have a greater need for long-term services like retirement planning and wealth management.

Here’s a look at what financial health really means and what financial services firms and organizations advocating financial literacy can do to foster it among consumers.

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How U.S. Businesses Are Reaching 25 Million Customers They Used to Ignore

Posted by Bob Gallagher on March 1, 2017

Why would any business ignore a multi-trillion-dollar market that is exponentially growing? If you are not communicating effectively with limited English-speaking customers, that is exactly what you are doing.

There are more than 25 million limited English proficient (LEP) consumers living in the United States today, constituting more than 8 percent of the country’s total population. This group, which cannot communicate effectively in English, is only part of the nearly 65 million individuals in the U.S. who speak a language other than English at home.

That’s right: one in five individuals living in the U.S. primarily speaks a language other than English at home. This population has nearly tripled in size since 1980, when it stood at 23.1 million. Studies also show that 80 percent of these individuals prefer to do business in their native language.

Despite its multi-trillion dollar buying power, it is entirely possible that your business is not reaching this valuable group by failing to communicate in your customers' native tongues. By providing language access services, your company can quickly go from overlooking this audience to annexing its profound economic power.

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