Why Smart Marketers Are Engaging Online Hispanics In 2016

As we ease into a new year, we marketers are enthusiastically looking forward to seeing our 2016 marketing plans in action. Marketers who included online Hispanics in their plans should be rewarded by a large, growing audience which engages and transacts predominantly on smartphones. Those marketers who are not engaging digital Hispanics may want to look for ways to add them to this year's plan now. 

A recent study by David Burgos of TNS research provides ample evidence for why smart marketers are engaging online Hispanics this year.

Online Hispanics are leaders 

TNS does a great job segmenting online users by influence and social engagement with an ethnicity overlay. The segmentation includes four discrete groups ranked in order of digital influence and social engagement.

Leaders - Younger, early adopters, mobile centric, heavily influenced and influential on social media. Enjoy engaging with brands.

Connectors - Social is where they spend most of their time online, but they are consumers rather than influencers. 

Observers - The Internet is a huge source of information for this group, but they show little interest in engaging with or being influenced by social media.

Functionals - Little interest in digital technology.

TNS found that 50% of U.S. Hispanics fall into the “Leaders” segment, compared to only 34% of the overall U.S. market. Interestingly, TNS found that Hispanics who are Spanish-dominant or bilingual are more likely to be in the Leader segment when compared to English-dominant Hispanics. By language profile:

  • Spanish-dominant Hispanics: 52% Leaders
  • Bilingual Hispanics: 52% 
  • English-dominant Hispanics: 43%

Burgos also found that 53% of Hispanic millennials are digital “Leaders” vs. 47% of all U.S. millennials.

These findings are profound but not entirely new. The majority of online Hispanics, regardless of language preference or age, are early adopters, are heavily influenced and influential on social media, and enjoy engaging with brands. 

As I went through Burgos’ study, I fondly remembered the first Hispanic social media segmentation work done by Tamara Barber of Forrester Research in 2010. Six years ago, she found essentially the same thing as TNS.

Online Hispanics enjoy engaging with brands and transacting

If you made it this far in the post, you might be looking for a bit more data to support your recommendation to target online Hispanics. The TNS data has a plethora of information, but here are my favorite data points as they highlight how Hispanics engage with brands and transact online relative to the U.S. market:

  • Research products before a purchase - 137 index to U.S. market
  • Mobile search in-store - 174
  • Purchase products online - 146
  • Access a brand's online service - 137
  • Read emails from brands - 142
  • Like or engage a brand - 180
  • Forward brand content - 212
  • Write about brands online - 217
  • Ask a question to a brand - 221

If you are engaging with online Hispanics in 2016, you will undoubtedly be rewarded by this large audience who is very open to engaging with brands and buying online.

If you are not engaging with online Hispanics in 2016, why not?

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