Social media have completely changed the nature of how content for online consumption is produced. Companies must now speak to consumers through content that's less formal, more timely, shorter and ultimately more engaging.
The social Internet has opened the door for anybody to produce and distribute content, particularly in the Hispanic online space, where there is a relative lack of quality online content.
This represents a powerful opportunity for advertisers, and marketing agencies alike.
New roles for marketing agencies
This explosion in content production is changing the way some agencies operate and how advertisers reach consumers online.
"It's huge," said Joe Kutchera of dotGlobal, a digital Hispanic/Latin American marketing consultancy agency. He is writing a book about launching websites that cater to Hispanics. "It's taking [marketing agencies] from banner production to content production," he said.
We have always produced content for online Hispanics, but more recently we've reinvented our content development process to better engage with online Hispanics while providing value for our clients.
We have gone from a long content development process designed to produce relatively static content for websites to a much more agile process that almost resembles a newsroom.
Today, we are producing and publishing timely and relevant content on a daily basis. This includes writing Facebook and Twitter updates that are similar to news headlines, responding to consumer questions and feedback, and also producing and syndicating articles to many Hispanic online publishers.
Original content has benefits, pitfalls
Kutchera says there are good reasons to embrace the concept of producing your own content. Companies have better control over their message and benefit from increased engagement and SEO. But he also offers a word of caution for those who try to sell first and engage later.
"No matter what language you use, consumers can figure out in a second whether the content is real or not, and if it sounds cheesy, they will drop it," he said.
The ability to produce and distribute quality content is really the key to online marketing today. After all, content is and always will be king.
Here are 10 tips for using content to effectively reach online Hispanics:
1. Don't be afraid of the social Internet; embrace it
2. Develop clear goals and objectives upfront
3. Establish a voice and develop guidelines to ensure it is always consistent
4. Ensure that all content provides value to your target audience
5. Don't be afraid to test out different things
6. Make sure content is engaging, stimulating a conversation
7. Create an agile process, including legal approvals
8. Make sure your content is social media-optimized to maximize sharing
9. Avoid using regional Spanish when engaging to national Hispanic audiences
10. Be consistent when using the formal "usted" and informal "tu" forms in Spanish