The Latino Social Hurricane

  |  August 30, 2011   |  Comments

How external social events impact consumers' mindsets and behaviors.

A couple of days ago, I got a call from a journalist that wanted to learn more about the phenomenon of Latinos in social media. He said he's been reading the Marketing to Latinos column at ClickZ and was curious about what was driving the explosion of Hispanics in social media.

At the same time, while I was finalizing this column, another phenomenon came to life. I'm talking about @irene, a major natural event, which persuaded me to change the topic of my column and turned it into what you are reading right now.

Why Latinos Are Social?

I mentioned that, of course, age is a key factor. Latinos are younger than the general population, so it makes sense that they are more open to new technologies and interact more with other people.

Another reason includes having friends and family that are all spread out. Many have friends and family in their country of origin (or their parent's one). Also, if you take a look at the dynamics of population, Latinos have been migrating to non-traditional Hispanic DMAs such as North Carolina. Their social network is more diverse (browse the names of any Latino's Facebook friends and you'll know what I'm talking about).

Also, considering the social nature of Latinos, it seems obvious that this is a key driver. If you look at the statistics, Latinos spend much more time than the average American tweeting, posting on Facebook, etc.

Hmm…tricky question: is this social nature exclusive to Latinos?

Hurricanes Go Social

Many times, as marketers, when thinking on social media, we tend to put more emphasis on the media portion rather than on the social aspect. This recent event is a great example of why "social" goes before "media."

It might have been an interesting one for Irene Tien. As a pioneer in social media, she has the Twitter handle with her first name, @irene. And when the news spread around about the chances of a hurricane hitting the East Coast, she started to receive tweets directed to her, as if she was actually the natural catastrophe. Following the advice of her colleagues, she decided to "lend" her Twitter handle for some days, so that it could be used to share safety information and advice related to Hurricane Irene (the real one). Combining useful tips and links with a sense of humor drove her account past 11,000 followers.

The Latino Hurricane

The Latino Twittersphere was also very active. Natural threat aside, it was an interesting thing to watch. Kind of a live version of the reasons I had explained to the journalist mentioned above.

I evidenced an increased interaction between friends and family living in Latin America and in the U.S. I saw a back and forth between speaking in English and Spanish as a consequence of that. The social spirit of Latinos was at its peak; people sharing advice, information, and sending "bendiciones" for those who had families on the East Coast.

There was also room for humor as well. One friend, after the storm, was saying that what happened was nothing compared to how his hometown in South America got after a "regular" rainstorm. Another friend was bragging, saying that "se ahogaron en un vaso de agua" (they got drowned in a glass of water) and that category one storms, Caribbeans eat those for breakfast.

Providing help, emotional support, and also their sense of humor, Latino social nature was at its best around Irene.

Social Storms

External phenomenons ignite conversations in social media, turning complete strangers into "friends" who really care about each other's family. Someone's Twitter handle can turn into the official source of information during a hurricane in a couple of days.

Once again, social comes first and people are becoming (trusted) media. As marketers, we need to learn more about how external social events impact consumers' mindsets and behaviors. Thanks to @irene, for the latest lesson.

ClickZ Live Chicago Join the Industry's Leading eCommerce & Direct Marketing Experts in Chicago
ClickZ Live Chicago (Nov 3-6) will deliver over 50 sessions across 4 days and 10 individual tracks, including Data-Driven Marketing, Social, Mobile, Display, Search and Email. Check out the full agenda and register by Friday, August 29 to take advantage of Super Saver Rates!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Gustavo Razzetti

Gustavo Razzetti is EVP, Managing Director of Lapiz, the Latino shop of Leo Burnett. He has 20+ years of experience in integrated marketing communications in U.S. and Latin American markets.

A change agent, with the expertise of transforming agencies into digital at the core shops, Razzetti has become one of the leading voices when it comes to understanding the new market dynamics of US Latinos.

Former Chief Strategy & Engagement Officer at Grupo Gallegos, president of GlobalHue NY and CEO of Euro RSCG Latino. Razzetti's career is marked by extensive experience working with top consumer brands such as Comcast, Walgreens, Verizon, Nestlé, Chivas Regal, General Motors, Coca-Cola, and BBVA, and 200 others. He also served as CEO of Euro RSCG both in Puerto Rico and in Argentina. Prior to that, Gustavo was CEO and founding partner of WhyNet - the no. 1 interactive agency in Argentina.

Strategist by conviction, digital pioneer by choice, leader by evolution; Razzetti has received recognitions that include Effie awards, Gran Prix AMBA, Euro RSCG's CBI Award, and Strategic Planning Director of the Year, McCann Erickson. Many of the campaigns he strategically led won Cannes, Clio, New York Festival, London, and FIAP awards, among others.

On a personal note, Gustavo loves scuba diving, bicycling, gourmet cooking, and fine wines.

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

Get the ClickZ Marketing newsletter delivered to you. Subscribe today!

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

Featured White Papers

IBM: Social Analytics - The Science Behind Social Media Marketing

IBM Social Analytics: The Science Behind Social Media Marketing
80% of internet users say they prefer to connect with brands via Facebook. 65% of social media users say they use it to learn more about brands, products and services. Learn about how to find more about customers' attitudes, preferences and buying habits from what they say on social media channels.

Marin Software: The Multiplier Effect of Integrating Search & Social Advertising

The Multiplier Effect of Integrating Search & Social Advertising
Latest research reveals 68% higher revenue per conversion for marketers who integrate their search & social advertising. In addition to the research results, this whitepaper also outlines 5 strategies and 15 tactics you can use to better integrate your search and social campaigns.

WEBINARS

    Information currently unavailable

Resources

Jobs

    • HEAD OF SALES
      HEAD OF SALES (OZONE MEDIA) - Santa Clarawww.ozonemedia.com HEAD OF SALES POSITION Reporting to the founder & CEO, Kiran Gopinath, the Head...
    • DIRECTOR OF MARKETING
      DIRECTOR OF MARKETING (OZONE MEDIA) - Santa Clarawww.ozonemedia.com   DIRECTOR OF MARKETING POSITION   Reporting to the Founder and CEO...
    • Sales Planner
      Sales Planner (Verve ) - New YorkAbout Verve   Verve is the leader in location powered mobile advertising. We manage one of the largest mobile...