What second language should my business speak?

What second language should my business speak?

November 21, 2014

Choosing the languages that your customer support would be available in is like choosing which second language would be the most useful to learn. Some may make you sound intelligent or romantic, while others can widen your conversation circle. Either way, the language you use should be able to foster great connections between you and your audience.


For international brands with a very diverse consumer base, making the choice can be even more overwhelming, especially with the wide availability of multilingual call center service providers in top outsourcing destinations. English, being the universal language, should be a default medium for delivering assistance, but what other languages should you use?
To help you narrow down your choices, see these lists:
Most spoken languages in the world
(excluding English)

1.     Mandarin

2.     Spanish

3.     Hindi

4     Arabic

5.     Portuguese

6.     Bengali

7.     Russian

8.     Japanese

9.     Punjabi

10.     German

Most spoken languages by number of countries

1.     French

2.     Arabic

3.     Spanish

4.     Portuguese

5.     German

6.     Italian

7.     Mandarin

8.     Malay

9.     Kiswahili

10.     Russian

Official languages of the United Nations


1.     Arabic

2.     Chinese

3.     English

4.     French

5.     Russian

6.     Spanish

Of course, it’s best to select the languages that could reach the most number of people, so you might want to include the listed languages in your choices. However, there are far more crucial things that you should take into consideration before you decide.

•     Availability of resources

Do you have the right resources that could help you and your people learn your second business language? Are there institutions, software, or traditional learning materials at your disposal?

•     Manpower availability

More importantly, will you be able to find agents who are proficient in your business language? Training would of course be given to your customer service representatives, but it s still more advisable to hire people who natively speak the language, as they can build rapport better with customers.

•     Business location

This goes hand in hand with workforce availability. You should be able to scout native speakers or bilingual professionals in the country where you or your call center operates.

Ultimately, it is your customers who can truly decide which second language your business should speak. Other than finding out which nationalities you cater to, you can ask them the language they prefer support to be delivered in. Just keep in mind that you re doing thing not just to have a way with words, but also to build strong relationship with your customers.

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