Yahoo Study Shows Hispanics Online Are Savvy Multitaskers

A new study from Yahoo Telemundo and Simmons Research states that Hispanics who go online are apt to be more Internet savvy multitaskers than many other groups.

According to the report, “ConexiÓn Cultural/Connected Culture,” Hispanics with Internet access outpace the general population in reported hours of daily media and technology use, including 14 hours of each day, or 27 percent, spent with technology, and 13.5 hours, or 26 percent, spent with media. It found many Hispanic users utilize more than one device at a time, said Michele Madansky, vice president, global market research, Yahoo, and co-author of the report.

“They are using all these media simultaneously. The Internet has really become central to their lives. The television is on all the time in the background, but the Internet is a critical part of their daily lives,” said Madansky. “Really it’s about how TV and Internet are being meshed. The Internet is not replacing the television, it’s enhancing the experience.”

Madansky said Hispanic Internet users often view Spanish language television programs while reviewing English language Internet content, which creates an opportunity and a challenge for advertisers targeting this market.

“Some marketers have been doing language well, with banner advertising, or at the very least with landing pages where you are given the option of Spanish or English,” she said. “The big take away is Hispanics are online and you need to create separate online marketing campaigns that address this audience that are culturally relevant. It’s about providing contextual relevant messaging, so you’re really understanding these people and what’s important to them: their cultural heritages, their families and friends and connectivity, and using that in the messaging.”

The report found nearly 70 percent of Hispanics agreed “life will be better in the future because of technology,” compared to 51 percent of the general population. She also found that almost 80 percent of online U.S. Hispanics have access to broadband, and seven of ten have been online for more than five years.

While the “ConexiÓn Cultural/Connected Culture” report would seem to contradict other studies showing slower Internet adoption in the Hispanic marketplace, that’s actually not the case. The Yahoo Telemundo survey is actually exploring behaviors of a different segment of Hispanics — those that are currently online — individuals Madansky insists are important as early adopters of technology.

“It’s true that Internet adoption by use Hispanics is lower than general adoption,” she said. “But Hispanics are the largest minority in the U.S…. This is an attractive market and you need to treat this audience a little bit differently. There is a theory that U.S. Hispanics are Internet newbies and that’s certainly not the case.”

Yahoo Telemundo and Simmons Research conducted the survey using 2,500 respondents, 2,200 from online sampling and 300 recruited by phone, as well as media usage diaries from 24 Hispanic families in three major U.S. markets.

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