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Facebook is 'friending' Latin America


Latin America, where 1 in 3 people already have Facebook accounts, will increasingly drive the social network’s global profits.

That is according to Alexandre Hohagen, Facebook’s vice president for the region, in an exclusive interview with Reuters’ Spanish-language service, in which he highlighted both Latin America’s already heavy use of the website and its potential for growth.

On Wednesday, shares in the world’s largest social network finally surpassed their value when they debuted on the stock exchange in May 2012, powered by major growth in smartphone advertising revenue.

“We [Latin America] have had an important role in the growth of those company results,” Hohagen, a 45-year-old Brazilian, told Reuters. “And we are still far from the ceiling. We are a region of 600 million people where 250 million people have still never connected to the internet.” READ MORE

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The Future of Latinos and Social Media


It was Social Media Week in Miami and I had the honor to be part of the LATISM panel "The Evolution of Hispanic Social Media" with Fernando Rodríguez and Cristina Rua from the Ford Motor team and Juan Rótulo, digital editor of PeopleenEspañol.com.
I was asked by many fellow tweeps to share some of the discussions. The panel was too intense (and extensive), making it hard to capture all the insights. I'd rather focus on sharing some of the content I presented. Hopefully, the other participants can do the same in the coming days.
The Cultural Connection
Social media is allowing people to (re)connect with their Latino tribe. Either by leveraging their social spirit or identity construction. Social media is fueling Latinos to connect to their Latino culture, even for those that - formerly - didn't feel the need to. Shared social causes and interests are making diverse and divergent Latino groups come together.
Mainstream interests and Latino passions. Latinos are cultural chameleons, and social media is the perfect playground for them to show their colors. Depending on the topic, their colors might be more Latino (the way they socialize) or American (at work). But in many cases they show a bicultural behavior where they combine both. Entertainment is a perfect example. Take the Xfinity Latino Facebook page. It provides a comprehensive take on entertainment, both mainstream and Latino. But it provides a take on Latino entertainment that you can't find on the general market page, making it for everyone who's passionate about Latino entertainment (not just Latinos). READ MORE

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Young adults in Generation X are as likely to connect with friends, family and co-workers online as they are in person, according to a University of Michigan study.

In a typical month, adults in their late 30s report that they engaged in about 75 face-to-face contacts or conversations, compared to about 74 electronic contracts through personal emails or social media.

"Given the speed of emerging technologies, it is likely that electronic contacts will continue to grow in the years ahead, eventually exceeding face-to-face interactions," said Jon D. Miller, author of the latest issue of The Generation X Report. "But the young adults in Generation X are currently maintaining a healthy balance between personal and electronic social networking."

Miller directs the Longitudinal Study of American Youth at the U-M Institute for Social Research. The study has been funded by the National Science Foundation since 1986, and the current report includes responses from 3,027 Gen Xers interviewed in 2011. READ MORE

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Plus Three recently conducted a survey of social networking sites to determine the growth of this valuable media tool for Latinos. Among the more interesting findings, actress and singer Selena Gomez has passed a significant milestone on Facebook by surpassing Barack Obama with 22.5 million fans. A total of 32 Latino celebrities are among the top 1,000 Facebook fan pages, the survey finds.

"Latino Facebook users grew 167% compared to 21% among non-Hispanics from April 2010 to April 2011 according to comScore," said Juan Proano, President, Plus Three. " Latinos are using Facebook to stay connected with family and friends and to stay connected with their identity. Any organization that wants to stay in touch with a Latino audience will need to focus its outreach on using Facebook and social media in order to stay relevant today".

The triple digit growth provides the strongest indicator yet that Latinos are rapidly adopting Facebook and social media to connect with family and friends but also to advance common interests, issues, grassroots movements and social causes.

Plus Three surveyed the top 1,000 Facebook fan pages and found 32 Latino celebrities among the top 1,000. Only three Latinos broke into the top 100. Shakira was the top Latina celebrity with 35 million fans and ranked number eight on the overall list followed by Selena Gomez at number thirty-five and Enrique Iglesias at number forty-eight.

The Latinos with at least 2 million Facebook fans are mostly singers, athletes, and comedians. Athletes from the World Cup and Reggaeton artists dominated the list. Latino celebrities on the list include Daddy Yankee, Don Omar, Lionel Messi, Ricardo Kaka, George Lopez, Jennifer Lopez, Christina Aguilera, Ricky Martin, and Carlos Santana. READ MORE

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8602365470?profile=originalTo provide additional information and entertainment services to the Hispanic community, Verizon today launched two bilingual social media properties, each of them in English and Spanish, on Facebook and Twitter.

The Facebook fan page Somos Verizon FiOS (We Are Verizon FiOS) and the Twitter site @SomosFiOS (We Are FiOS) will engage Verizon's Hispanic audience by providing a forum for emerging technology that also offers the best in culturally relevant entertainment content and online community connections. The bilingual properties are only part of the story. The remaining story will be crafted by the fans and followers of Verizon FiOS service.

FiOS is Verizon's all-fiber-optic-based combination of home phone, the nation's fastest Internet and crystal-clear TV services. Somos Verizon FiOS and @SomosFiOS complement the FiOS bicultural website, www.EnciendeteFiOS.com , an informational site with versions in English and Spanish that users can easily toggle between.

"Our Facebook and Twitter pages are venues where Hispanics can learn, inform and share their opinions about technology and discuss how it is shaping the future of the things they feel most passionate about," said Orlando Zambrano, Verizon multicultural marketing manager. "We aim to fulfill our community's need to know about the latest and greatest trends of the future by preparing, empowering and inspiring them to learn, create and share their own vision."

Somos Verizon FiOS will kick off with a promotion in partnership with HBO Latino. People who become fans of the Facebook page can register in a sweepstakes for a VIP trip to Los Angeles and dinner with Ana de la Reguera, star of the HBO Latino series "Capadocia." Fans of Somos Verizon FiOS will be treated to regular content updates, promotions, customer support links, special offers and an interactive tab called MontajeFiOS, where fans can upload their photos into a mosaic and share with friends. A partnership with the Hispanic Scholarship Fund will provide educational and informational subject matter to inform users about college funding, educational opportunities and success stories.

On Oct. 11, @SomosFiOS will host its first of many Twitter parties to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Attendees will discuss a variety of topics regarding culture, icons and lifestyle. There will be a chance for participants to win tech gadgets and gift cards, and five winners will be chosen.

"When reaching out to Hispanics, it's not only about language, it's about the overall experience," said Zambrano. "Verizon maintains a large presence in the Hispanic sphere, as many Hispanics crave technology, entertainment and community involvement - three big pillars for Somos Verizon FiOS and @SomosFiOS. We will continue to foster two-way dialogue between the brand and our Hispanic consumers through social media tools that allow customers to engage with FiOS on their own terms."

To experience these new Hispanic social media platforms firsthand, and to become a fan of the new Facebook page, visit www.facebook.com/SomosVerizonFiOS , and follow Verizon FiOS at www.twitter.com/SomosFiOS. READ MORE

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