Tips For Targeting Latinos Online: New @ #SESNY

Posted in SEO, SES New York

Day 2 at #SESNY kicked off with a groundbreaking keynote. But wait. Let’s rewind. Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of interviewing Paul Lima of Lima Consulting on the topic of Digital Marketing To Latino Users. The Q&A was an eye-opening peek at the opportunity represented by the growing online Hispanic market, and a serious appeteaser to the inaugural launch of the Focus Latino track at Search Engine Strategies New York.

The keynote was introduced & moderated by Mike Grehan, Chair SES Advisory Board, Global VP Content, SES/Search Engine Watch/ClickZ, Carlos Vassallo, CEO, LatinVision Media Inc., Carlos Manzano, Executive Director, Latin Media & Entertainment Commission, City of NY, and Paul Lima himself. Mark López , Head of U.S. Hispanic Audience, Google, took the stage for the main event, which was jam-packed with awesome stats about Latino users. Oodles of them live below the fold, in addition to a hearty helping of takeaways from the follow-up session, Reaching Latinos through SEO, presented by Rafael E. Hernandez, Sales Manager, AudienceScience and Matias Perel, Founder and CEO, Latin3. aimClear live-tweeted both of these fascinating sessions. Read on for the goodies.

Mind-Blowing Stats, Brian-Nuggets  & Best Practices
Mike, Carlos V. & Carlos M, Paul, and Mark took turns sharing a slew of stats & targeting tips regarding the Hispanic Market. (Rad full write up in Bruce Clay Blog.) Here’s a sample platter of the main attractions:

  • The U.S. Hispanic market is a $1 trillion market! That cannot be ignored.
  • New York City has the most diverse Hispanic population than any other city in the U.S.
  • By 2040, it’s predicted that 100% of the U.S. Hispanic market will be online. Searching, socializing, etc.
  • There is no real divide between online & offline engagement. Online engagement, video & mobile usage is on par with the overall market.
  • 53% of Hispanics use the Internet for shopping (searching to learn more about brands, find products,purchase products, etc.)
  • Search prompts action, meaning search generates distinct offline action for U.S. Hispanic advertisers
  • TV is an effective trigger for search – 78% of Hispanics have used search engine to find more info about something they saw on TV.
  • U.S. Hispanics are Googlers! 93% of Hispanics use Google as their primary search engine.
  • Mobile search drives store traffic. 1 in 3 mobile search queries have local intent.
  • 15% of iPhone apps are local-based
  •  24% iPhone users are Hispanic (they rely on mobile to stay connected with friends & family)
  • Mobile is already an important component in the purchase funnel. 40% of Hispanics compare prices & find retailers via smartphones.
  • Search dominates smartphone usage.70% of Hispanics use smartphones to search– in other words, search engines are most popular sites they visit.
  • 8% of queries entered in Google today are in Spanish. This opens a huge pot of inventory that many companies haven’t tapped into yet.
  • Regarding Spanish keywords vs. English keywords — there’s a substantial discount for Spanish KWs.
  • 80% of Spanish KW queries are done in the English Interface of Google. This suggests bilingual users, who can be targeted by both Spanish & English KWs. #Winning

Best practices:

  1. Develop search capabilities for this market. You have to test your creative across languages. Keywords, images, copy– what you serve to English-speaking users may not resonate with Spanish-speaking users.
  2. Have an “Always On” strategy for search. Your target audience is searching 24/7.
  3. Make your offline marketing strategy a digital one. Ensure you are present as users search for their favorite offline content (such as TV shows).
  4. Extend to mobile search. It’s there, & it’s growing! Hispanics rely more heavily on their mobile devices.

Reaching Latinos through SEO
The following session focused more on SEO, and ways to optimize your site for Hispanic searchers. Rafael was up first, reiterating that Google has 72% of search traffic in Latin America. If Latinos are a part of your target audience, Google should factor into your SEO tactics.

Another significant tactic Rafael touched upon the importance of understanding how your audiences describes you; your business, brand, products, services, etc. What are the keywords they use to find you? Those are the keywords you should use to advise your SEO strategy. And, newsflash– they might not be the words you use to describe yourself.

Where to find keyword ideas:

  • Your own content
  • Your Analytics (high quality terms driving small traffic? low-hanging fruit!)
  • Your competitors’ pages
  • Your PPC data

Discover what’s working, and use it!

Matias took the stage next, set to dig deeper into Reaching Latinos through SEO.

Some stats:

  • 30 mil U.S. Hispanics are online
  • 89% search share in Latin America on Google
  • 112 million Internet users in Latin America
  • 6 million new web users in Brazil last year alone

Factors in SEO & Other Fascinating Takeaways

  • Indexing - take note, is every page indexing?
  • Contextualization (KEY in Latin America) – what’s the page about?
  • Reputation is huge. Influences people to click, or… not.
  • Think globally…. who owns your local domain? Use it!
  • Sub-domains & sub-folders – separate your Spanish content from your English content. Avoid query string parameters /session variable.
  • Language - how does your audience think & search online? How do they expect to find your content?
  • Server - not the biggest deal, but having local IPs for your server can help add context to your site.
  • Local links are more relevant, a better sign of trust & reputation to Hispanic users.
  • The new social factor: social defined relevance. Sharing is the new linking! See how Google understands your social connections.
  • As always, CONTENT IS KING. According to Matias, it’s also president & prime minister :) . The same rules apply. Create unique content worth sharing and linking.
  • “Latinos love to share! Latinos love great content!” Leverage cool videos, infographics, thoughtful posts, incredible photos.

“Viva la diferencia!”
The biggest takeaway from this session (and perhaps the track in general)… Be mindful of the different ways Latinos say the same thing. Latinos have a lot in common – but every culture has some slight differences in how they express themselves. The same word (for example, “lightbulb”) can be expressed differently from Argentina, to Mexico, to Colombia. This is huge in terms of KW research and how you go about stemming. There are so many ways to say the same thing… within and between these cultures.

Thanks to all of the moderators & speakers for two terrific back-to-back sessions. These presentations certainly set the bar for future Focus Latino tracks to come. Stay tuned in aimClear Blog for more conference coverage– follow along with @beebow, @Matt_Peterson, @aimClear & @KJalivay for live-tweets straight from the floor.

  • Louis Pagan

    Great post compilation.

  • Lauren

    Thanks, Louis!

  • C. Epp

    I think that the Latino market is a huge market to which a large part of it remains untapped especially in Mexico! I just wish I could speak the language. Opportunities??

  • Lauren

    @C. Epp… Rosetta Stone? ;)

  • Mario

    Great post! latinos o Hispanos are a big segment of today’s markets, but like the article explain it is a complicated! with so many countries and dialects, even in Mexico people from different zones have and use different words to describe the same item, ie: torcido, bolillo, soldado, etc. One thingh is for sure, we prefer to speak/read in Spanish/Castellano, when buying products and services, and we prefer to use the smartphones to gather our info, it is hard to talk in a second language in a phone, but we will shop/buy and used your service if we know you care and understand us.

    mario http://www.en-phone.com