After spending 14 years in marketing, Sheridan realized she wanted to pursue her passion of foreign languages. While going back to school to become a certified translator, she fell in love with subtitles during an elective media and translations course. It was then that she decided to start a subtitling translation business.
Last fall, Sheridan launched Silver Screen Translations, specializing in Spanish and English subtitling services for film, television, and advertising. Since then she has been concentrating on networking and building her portfolio to grow her business, and recently translated the Spanish side of Mi Casa’s website as a pro bono project.
“The more I translated Mi Casa’s website, the more I grew impressed by what they are doing,” she said. “I felt great to have a part in getting the word out about Mi Casa’s services to the Spanish speaking community.”
Sheridan said her passion for translation stems from its intrinsic way of bringing people together. One of her recent projects involved subtitling Cuban-American television episodes for a Latin American and Caribbean studies college course highlights translation’s ability to connect differing groups.
“Translation bridges people in a way that might not otherwise be possible,” Sheridan said, explaining that English speaking college students were able to gain a deeper understanding of Cuban-American culture as a result of her subtitles.
Though her job as a business owner is much different than her past work, Sheridan is able to meld her marketing background seamlessly with her new business venture.
“Subtitles are a tool to help your product reach a wider audience,” she said. “They have a lot of marking value in that it’s not just about translation words, but adding value to your product.”
Sheridan’s marketing and corporate background, coupled with her personal entrepreneurial experience, allows her to give rich advice for aspiring small business owners.
Here are some of her tips:
- Develop a clear and cohesive marketing strategy: Before launching, put a lot of thought into what you want your business to represent and do in order to develop a consistent message across mediums, whether in print material, online or in-person.
- There is much power in networking: There is nothing more powerful than being introduced to somebody because of someone else.
- Don’t underestimate the kindness of others: Sheridan has been pleasantly surprised by how many fellow small business owners are willing to help her out, whether with networking or advice.
- Talk to anybody and everybody you can: Don’t be afraid to talk to small business owners who do something completely different than you, they can give you fresh perspectives and out-of-the box ideas.
- Don’t rush into starting a business: A well thought-out and developed business plan gains the trust of others.