LATIN AMERICA ONLINE: WHAT A CONNECTED LATIN AMERICA MEANS FOR BUSINESSES
By Cassandra Bremer, Content Manager and Developer at The San Jose Group
Latin America is young, online and social, and that creates a huge potential for American companies to win a market share of the continent’s booming emerging middle class. As digital and social strategies are becoming more paramount for brands in the U.S. to establish themselves and reach consumers, digital strategies are emerging as a core messaging platform to reach target markets in Latin America, and here is why.
Whereas the mobile industry in the U.S. accounts about 2% of the economy, according to eMarketer, it accounts for between 4% and 5% of the Latin American economy. And the industry is growing.
Earlier this year, the Latin American regional operator America Móvil served almost 300 million subscribers in 18 countries, and by the end of this year, eMarketer estimates Latin American mobile phone users will pass the 396 million mark. Needless to say, with 400 million consumers using mobiles in Latin America (compared to the 258 million in the United States), mobile devises provide a huge arena for brands to target consumers.
Mix the high mobile usage with the fact that Latin America is the fastest growing ecommerce market in the world next to China, and the market potential becomes obvious.
While Latin America as a whole is a lucrative target for brands, Brazil is really leading the social/digital movement in the continent. This year, over three quarters of social network users in Brazil will visit social media sits via a mobile device, and in 2013, Brazil’s ecommerce industry reached $15 billion. In fact, Brazil houses 299 of the top 500 ecommerce sites in Latin America, and that statistic begins to make sense when considering the country’s young and thriving consumer base. With a massive population of 202 million people, 62% of Brazilians are under the age of 30.
“Brazil is leading the Latin American market in online consumption, and with that the rest of the continent will soon follow.” said George L. San Jose, president and CCO of The San Jose Group. “We saw this trend beginning to emerge about five years ago, so we alerted our international clients and began offering trilingual web development and social media strategies to serve the Americas. To date, we have saved our Latin American clients thousands of dollars of web development costs alone.”
With Latin Americans becoming more mobile, online and social by the day, digital strategy is a huge consideration for brands targeting Latin American consumers. Whether it’s blogs, social media posts, websites or videos, branded content on the Internet is as important to targeting consumers in Latin America as it is to targeting consumers here in the U.S.