Truth is, Hispanics use media very differently
Watch less TV, listen to more radio and stay glued to their smartphones
July 20, 2016
By the editors of Media Life
This article is part of an ongoing Media Life series entitled “Catching the next big wave: Hispanic media.” You can read previous stories by clicking here
In order to reach the group you’re targeting, you need to know where to put your ads.
And if you’re trying to reach Hispanics in the same places that you reach other segments of the population, well, it’s not going to work.
It turns out Hispanics’ use media very differently than the general population, according to the latest comparable metrics report from Nielsen, which details media habits among different demographics.
During first quarter of this year, the report found, Hispanics spent much less time with traditional television and tablets but much more time on smartphones and listening to radio.
So if you’re looking to reach this group, you’ll want to adjust your planning accordingly.
The study found that while the average person watches traditional TV for 35 hours and 26 minutes per week, Hispanics watch for just 27 hours and 13 minutes, or about 23 percent less time.
There’s a big gap in tablet usage as well. The average person uses a tablet for surfing the web and accessing apps for three hours and 42 minutes per week. For Hispanics, that number is just one hour and 41 minutes, or less than half the time of the average person.
But for other media, Hispanics are much greater consumers.
They use smartphones about three hours per week more than the average person, at 14 hours and 25 minutes per week, and they listen to more radio than any other demographic, at 13 hours and 42 minutes per week.
Why Hispanics’ habits differ
What conclusions can be drawn from this information?
Keep in mind, it’s just as important to understand why these differences happen as to understand the variances between each group.
One consistent finding over the years is that Hispanics favor mobile over all other demographics, and Nielsen’s report bears this out. Hispanics are nearly twice as likely to watch streaming video or listen to streaming audio as other demos.
The reason for this is partly because for many Hispanics, mobile is their only connection to the web. It’s cheaper to have a wireless plan only rather than an in-home internet connection and a wireless plan. Since Hispanics tend to have lower income levels than the general population, many choose to use smartphones as their sole option.
Tablets are more expensive than smartphones, plus they require their own data plan if you want to use them in places without WiFi. That financial barrier largely explains their lower usage among Hispanics.
Radio consumption is higher in part because, again, it’s a cheap form of entertainment. There are also a lot more Spanish-language stations targeting Hispanics now than there were even five years ago, and it’s no surprise many people like to listen to radio in their chosen language.
As for TV, Hispanics skew very young, with a median age of 28. Younger people are much less likely to watch TV than older, and that’s across all demographics, the Nielsen report finds. The large number of Hispanic Millennials simply lowers the amount of TV the overall group is watching.
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