By Ruth Manuel-Logan
We Latinos are enjoying a sizzling connection with Facebook. Our Latino population is no longer underrepresented in the U.S. Companies, over the last few years, have sat up and taken huge notice of the largest minority in the U.S. and who will have a major influence on the country as a whole in the coming years.
In the Latino community, Facebook has acted as a unifier of sorts between people of Spanish descent, who typically tend to have family members more geographically dispersed.
We Latinos tend to highly value ties that bind — familial or social –and Facebook is a great facilitator of banter, and also allows for the sharing of precious photos and video that are near and dear.
According to ComScore, Facebook user growth amongst Latinos is stupefying: From April 2010 to April 2011, usage grew 167 percent (versus 21 percent for non-Hispanics). Facebook has a 70 percent penetration rate among Latinos online versus 72 percent for the general population.
Why are we Latinos flocking to the ever-popular friends connection site?
We Are Passionate About Our Feelings
We Latinos love status updating and commenting with a no-holds barred ‘tude. We call it as we see it, with a hands-on-hips way of letting you know, exactly what we think. Since we are very gregarious, Facebook tends to bring out our social butterfly side to the fullest extent. We also don’t mind getting personal and even sharing nitty-gritty intimate details, moreso than other users.
We Have Found Our Online Niche
The bridge from the U.S. to Latin America is now Facebook. Four Latin American countries – Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, and Peru — are among the top 10 countries in the world in terms of Facebook user growth. For those who have recently arrived in this country, they aren’t really far from home because Facebook keeps them in constant touch with their homeland’s goings-on.
Surprisingly, English speaking Latinos rule on Facebook. As a matter of fact, 50.6 percent of Latinos on Facebook are English-preferred, although when researchers checked the conversations on walls, Spanish was also peppered greatly into the mix.
The Weaker Sex
English-preferred males are growing by leaps and bounds on Facebook, si, si. But the website’s penetration and use amongst both sexes and segments is ever-increasing.
Readers, what percentage of your Facebook friends are Latino, like me?