5 BP Conference wins: why it made me a  better translator

Chiara Vecchi and Anja Lordanić Mustać, in front of a BP23 poster. The BP translation conference 2023 was a great experience!

5 BP Conference wins: why it made me a better translator

Chiara Vecchi and Anja Lordanić Mustać, in front of a BP23 poster. The BP translation conference 2023 was a great experience!
Photo by Annalisa Murara.

In May 2023, I attended the BP Conference, which was my first in-person industry event since the pandemic. BP stands for “Business and Practice” (nothing to do with fossil fuels or the energy industry!), so it focuses on boosting productivity and other practical methods to serve clients better. This time, the host city was Utrecht, the Netherlands.

As the name suggests, the BP translation conferences train industry professionals to offer a high-quality service, while making use of the latest productivity techniques and developments (not AI/machine translation-related, in this particular case).

I attended many useful sessions and gained access to resources that could also help my clients. Here are some examples of my personal wins:

Win 1: gained a wider network of professional translators

A group photo of the BP translation conference attendees. I met a fantastic new network of freelance translators for other languages in Utrecht.
Photo by BP Conference

Events like these are great for networking. I was lucky enough to meet, learn from and network with freelance translators who specialise in the same fields I do, but in different language combinations (e.g. German into English, English into Croatian, German into Spanish, etc.).

This means that if you ever need a referral for a language I don’t work with, I can connect you with trustworthy language professionals I’ve met personally. We cover almost every subject area.

Feel free to get in touch today — I’ll be able to save you a lot of time!

Win 2: held a successful “real life” presentation

A black microphone. I presented one of the sessions at the conference! It was a great networking event.
Photo by Irina L on Pixabay

During the pandemic, I discovered I enjoy presenting to fellow linguists and sharing my experience with them. However, back then, most of the talks I held were online. Apart from a 3-hour hybrid event for my professional association, the BP translation conference in Utrecht was my first time holding a presentation in “real life”.

Attendees reacted very well to my talk on trade fairs as a marketing tool, and I was excited to receive positive comments about my engaging and friendly style. One colleague even suggested turning it into a workshop for next year’s edition, so watch this space!

If you’re running online or in-person meetings about a new project, and if you’d like the input of an experienced linguist, I’d be more than happy to attend.

Win 3: practised marketing internationalisation and copywriting skills

Chiara Vecchi’s hand, writing in a notebook. I made sure to take lots of notes during the sessions and while networking.
Photo by Letizia Cappella

I attended a session by the fantastic Dutch translator Branco van der Werf, who’s an expert in international copywriting and adaptation.

We learned how to make sure your copy sounds just as good to your target audience as it does in the source language. This was a brilliant way to refresh many of the techniques I had previously learned at university and in courses.

I’d already been working on a new service in this area for a while. Now, I’m happy to offer Italian creative translations and international copywriting to you and your colleagues. Contact me if you’re interested.

Win 4: learned about communicating what I can and can’t do

Chiara Vecchi chatting to a fellow attendee. Networking and communicating was an important part of the event.
 Photo by BP Conference

Another great presentation by Czech translator and interpreter, Jakub Res, stressed that we should be able to tell clients what we can and can’t do as translators.
For example, I can’t translate a 10-page medical report, a slogan, your hotel website or hundreds of beauty product descriptions by tomorrow. (Well, I could, but I’d lose a huge amount of sleep and you’d waste a lot of money. The result would be more than poor!)

I’d recommend to always be specific in your translation requests, e.g. “I need [translation service and type of project], ideally by [date]”. I’ll then get back to you as soon as possible.

If I can’t accommodate your original request, I’ll always give you a few alternative options.

For example, you could choose to:

  • start by getting only the most important beauty product descriptions translated;
  • slightly extend the deadline of your medical report;
  • get an Italian summary/placeholder page for your hotel for the time being;
  • or simply have a quick chat with me to discuss your brief for a marketing slogan.

You’ll know from the start what I can do for you and whether this is in line with your expectations, time, and budget. Trust me: this will save you a lot of time and hassle.

Win 5: regained confidence

Image shows the letters “Don’t Panic” on a pink background. I overcame my unease of flying after the pandemic!
Photo by Tonik  on Unsplash

I always enjoyed travelling. For example, I visited customers during my time as a marketing and international customer service assistant, and I often went on holidays or stayed with friends who lived abroad.

With Covid-19, which hit right after becoming a mum, taking a plane was impossible for me for quite some time. This was great for the environment, but initially I felt a bit insecure when taking a plane again. I’m not afraid of flying, but I was uncertain about the processes at the airport. Perhaps you felt similarly?

However, I’m happy to say that after recent trips to Utrecht and Berlin, I’m fully confident about flying again.

So, if you’d like me to travel short or even long distances to meet your team or attend a team-building event, consider it done.


Overall, attending the BP conference workshops in Utrecht was a pleasant experience (if we don’t take into account the fact that it rained all the time…).

I know I can now be an even better translator for you, and I’m hoping to attend next year’s event in Seville to learn more.

If you have any questions about the BP translation conference or if you’d like to discuss your translation project with me, get in touch. I look forward to hearing from you!