5 Basic Phrases To Talk To Your Brazilian Customers

December 11, 2015


We all work hard to deliver compelling messages to our target audience. But are we doing it in a way that really speaks to them? Creating a connection with your customers is the simplest way to inspire loyalty, which in turn drives word-of-mouth recommendations and of course, sales.

The best way to connect with your international audience is to speak their native language, but if it’s too early for you to localize your content, even making a small effort in your international customer support emails will show your customers that you care about them and their business. They aren’t just another anonymous user to you. Just the fact that you’re making an effort will make your customers really happy—we know from experience! It truly goes a long way and usually people are really excited that you’re going out of your way, even if it just takes you a few seconds.

If you have a repertoire of terms you can use, adding this small touch will just take a second. So, we thought we’d provide you with some basic terms in Brazilian Portuguese.

Here are five salutations you can use to better connect with Brazilian consumers.

  1. The formal:
    Prezado Senhor means Dear Sir, and Prezada Senhora means Dear Madam. These formal salutations are typically used when you don’t know the consumer’s name. If you do know the person’s name and you want to address him or her informally, use Prezado or Prezada prior to the name, as in Prezado João or Prezada Maria.
  2. The informal:
    That’s Olá, which means hello. Maybe you’ve seen or heard oi, but when writing, olá is preferred. You might even follow up with como vai, or for added informality, tudo bem. Both mean how are you.
  3. The time-based greetings (make sure you get the time-zone right!):
    Bom dia, boa tarde, and boa noite mean good morning, good afternoon and good night, respectively. You can also use boa noite to mean good evening.
  4. Or a greeting for any time:
    When you’re greeting someone who’s visiting your blog or opening your app for the first time, you can say bem-vindo. That’s welcome in Portuguese, but remember that this is gender specific—bem-vindo for guys, bem-vinda for girls.
  5. Saying goodbye:
    To wrap up a formal conversation use atenciosamente, which roughly means sincerely. If it’s an informal chat go for até logo, in both cases, add a thank you with those:
    muito obrigado (if you are a man writing) or muito obrigada (if you’re a woman).

Familiar expressions will help your customers feel comfortable and safe in your hands, and these are a great start even if everything else on your site is in English. Your customers will surely say muito obrigado to you!

If you want to take your international customer service a few steps further, but lack the agents with language skills, we can help! Check out the Unbabel for Zendesk integrations and let us know if you’d like a demo.

Thanks to Camila Pohlman, Unbabel’s in-house Portuguese Brazilian Linguist for the help putting these together.


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