Mobile Is a Must for Reaching US Hispanics

February 10th, 2011

We know Hispanics love cell phones, especially smart phones. But now several recent studies have confirmed that marketers looking to reach Hispanics should consider mobile as the primary tactic. Below is a quick recap of these studies as well as examples of some great Hispanic mobile websites.

Google recently released a report titled “Four Truths about US Hispanic Consumers” that should be an eye opener for anyone interested in reaching the nation’s largest minority group. Among the reports’ findings:

• 93% of US Hispanics use a mobile phone regularly
• 45% of US Hispanic mobile phone users have smartphones compared to 34% of general market
• 87% of US Hispanic mobile phone users have contract plans and only 8% have pre-paid plans

February 2011 data from The Nielsen Company is consistent with Google’s findings; this data also shows that 45% of Hispanic mobile users have smartphones, the highest among all ethnic groups, including Whites.

If that data is not convincing enough about the importance of reaching Hispanics through mobile devices, Scarborough Research released a study in December of 2010 that shows Hispanics are extremely active mobile users. Of note:

• 64% of US Hispanic mobile users text message vs. 56% of general market
• 22% of US Hispanic mobile users download or listen to music vs. 15% of general market
• 12% of US Hispanic mobile users use social networks on their mobile vs. 10% of general market

Hispanic Mobile Websites

To reach Hispanics on mobile devices, a mobile friendly website makes a ton of sense. First, mobile websites are platform agnostic, so they will work with most new generation cell phones. In addition, consumers expect mobile websites to be less robust than full desktop versions, allowing marketers to start small and scale based on results. Here are a few examples of Spanish-language mobile websites that impressed me when I was checking them out on my iPhone.

• ESPN Deportes has a robust Spanish language mobile website with news, polls, TV listings and Podcasts. DirectTV is currently advertising on this site and consumers are prompted to call their toll free number.

Univision’s mobile site features most of Univision.com’s content including Spanish language news, entertainment and sports. When I check out the site, I actually was served an English language ad from You Again the movie that clicked through to the trailer.

• Terra also offers a mobile version of their site that features up to date Spanish content and ads from a Spanish language ad from Blackberry that clicked through to an English language mobile site and a Toyota Camry ad that took me to the Camry page Toyota’s Spanish language mobile site.

• Major League Baseball’s LasMayores.com offers a mobile version of their site that includes Spanish language news, updates on Hispanic players, team updates and stats.

As these studies show, Hispanics text, listen to music and engage in social media on their mobile devices more than the general market.

What marketers need to do is call.

Well, sort of.

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