Vanessa Goncalves Guimaraes, Founder of Keeper, is breaking down language barriers for companies entering the Brazilian market.
Brazil offers great business potential for foreign companies, but there is the issue of translation and ensuring potential customers can read and understand your messaging. Language is one of the major barriers most companies face when doing business in Brazil since it’s the only country in Latin America where Portuguese is spoken. Since most Brazilians don’t speak English, especially outside of Brazil’s major cities, foreign companies usually find it difficult to do business in this emerging market.
Guimaraes founded Keeper to provide translation services to businesses expanding to Brazil. It all started when she read a book on music improvisation by an American author. After exchanging a few emails, he noticed her writing skills and invited her to translate his book into Portuguese to capture more of the Brazilian market. That’s when Guimaraes realized the business potential.
As a female entrepreneur doing business in Brazil, Guimaraes experienced some challenges of her own. Although entrepreneurship has become a major factor in the growth of Brazil’s economy, the business ecosystem is generally dominated by men. Her greatest challenge was her own internal fears. But her ambition to succeed and to see her clients succeed was stronger than her fears.
Gradually her services evolved beyond translation into other activities that were essential for businesses to develop in Brazil. Her company has expanded from offering translation of literary work to now offering business translations and trans-creation of marketing content such as websites, videos, books and other informational material for companies looking to enter the Brazilian market.
Doing business in Brazil goes beyond the problem of language. It’s also about understanding the culture. The business culture in Brazil is largely based on personal relationships. So, developing strong personal relationships is key to successful business in Brazil. Keeper provides customer service and support to assist foreign companies in maintaining customer relationships.
Market intelligence is also a key dimension of Keeper’s services since it can be hard to get information from the Brazilian market, not only due to the language barriers but because Brazil has a large informal economy.
Keeper is focused on the American and European markets but has plans to provide its services in other regions in the future. Guimaraes’s entrepreneurial journey has helped shape and define the range of services Keeper offers today. She remains open-minded towards learning more, providing more and reinventing her company.
About Vanessa Goncalves Guimaraes
Vanessa Goncalves Guimaraes resides in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Prior to founding Keeper, she worked as a production engineer. She holds a master’s degree in production engineering and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Alternative Currencies.