Localization app graphics for Asia has many nuances, and some approaches have already become an axiom. Let's see what are the beliefs among specialists and which ones should be abandoned. Experts from Netpeak RadASO share their experience on this matter;)
⚡Colors are important
European and Asian ideas about what some color means really differ from each other. Traditionally in Asia, black is the color of mourning, white is failure, and so on. Such associations are great for interpreting Ming Dynasty paintings, but not for creating screenshots for the App Store.
🚀What to do?
Pay your attention to the actual cultural context. For example, watch Asian ads (video/banners) and divide by two blocks: advertising of local products and advertising of foreign products localized for Asia. This will make it easier to understand what Asians like and how well-known Western brands adapt to it.
After that, you can look into the app stores of interest countries and look at the screenshots of local publishers. Then you can analyze what cultural features competitors are integrating into their apps.
⚡️Adapt graphics anyway
Of course, it's a good idea to make screenshots similar to Asian competitors. But the question arises: is it necessary? Despite the seeming absurdity of the question, it is worth looking at the situation from the other side. Asians have long loved Western culture, and owning something European or American creates a sense of belonging.
🚀What to do?
Pay attention to the translation of texts in the first place. It is much more important that the user understands what is meaning on the screenshots and in the application. Next, you can conduct an A/B test for your product with translated text and non-adapted graphics, and a test with fully localized screenshots (+ changing colors, characters, etc.).
⚡️When localizing graphics, you need to add a «kawaii» mascot
Specialists often advise for Asia to make brighter screens and use a cute “kawaii” mascot (an anthropomorphic recognizable character that will be associated with the product in the future). But this idea is not suitable for all apps.
🚀What to do?
When integrating this idea into your graphics, it is worth remembering that the character doesn't have to look like a children's cartoon. For example, if you have a business or a medical product — a serious non-entertainment app, the mascot may look “more mature” (without pronounced emotions, in calm colors, more human-like) or completely absent.
Thus, it is possible to avoid the false perception of the app as childish or frivolous on the part of an audience of different ages.
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