The growth of the Hispanic population online has grown tremendously over the past couple of years and it will continue to do so as more and more online platforms conform to Hispanic consumers online. The latest statistics from Internet World Stats show that about 171,833,339 of the Latin American population is currently using the Internet, now that’s about 10.3 % when compared to the rest of the world’s population, which is about 89.7% Brazil is in the lead as being the top Internet country in Latin America at 67.5% while Mexico is second 23.9% and Argentina at 20.0% That’s not bad, so where exactly are they going online?
So far, Hispanics are going to websites that the rest of the world are using which are Yahoo, Google and Microsoft but at the same time there are niche websites that allow Hispanics to socialize within their own communities as well as to search for information such as news, sports and entertainment within Latin America. Sites like Terra, Univision and Telemundo specifically cater to the Hispanic population when it comes to searching for general information but there are more engaging sites or “social media” sites that allow real time communication within Hispanic communities as well as exchange links, videos and pics among one another. Facebook, for example, has become an excellent social media platform to engage the Hispanic group. According to the Hispanic market research company Captura Group, the launch of Facebook’s Spanish interface was so successful that between February and July of 2008, new Facebook accounts in Spanish speaking countries grew 325% from 2.3 million to 9.9 million. That means that in six months, more than 7.5 million Facebook accounts were created in countries where Spanish is spoken. A true network effect had taken hold in Spanish-speaking countries and the phenomenon also took hold among Spanish preferring US Hispanics as they received invitations from family and friends to join Facebook and vice-versa. One particular Facebook “fan page” that is definitely taking notice among the Hispanic community is Being Latino, a page aimed at discussing everyday issues within Hispanic culture. What is pretty amazing about this fan page is that in only a couple of months Being Latino has accumulated over 18,000 fans! There are other social media sites that can reach the Hispanic audience other than Facebook such as MySpace Latino, QuePasa and Qoobole!
The Internet is offering communication and resource tools for Hispanics and businesses, advertisers and marketers are redeveloping media campaigns to not only broadcast to the audience but engage them through social media networks as Hispanics continue using current online technology to socialize and to express their Hispanic cultural identity. Below are two visual statistics from the 2009 Hispanic Fact Book that shows which web and social media sites that Hispanics are currently using.
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