Monday, May 17, 2010

Minority social media audiences: Hiding in plain sight?

If you're interested in targeting African-American and Hispanic audiences on social media networks and wondering where to find them, the answer may be in the same places you frequent, or even more places than you're using. New data are revealing that minority audiences make as much or more use of social media as their white, non-Hispanic counterparts.  Here's a roundup of the latest insights about three places you'll find them: 
  • On government websites:  Blacks, Hispanics and whites are equally likely to use digital technologies to find government information, including blogs, social networks and online video, according to a new report from the Pew Internet and American Life project.  And minority attitudes about the government's presence online are positive. From the report: "Minority Americans are significantly more likely than whites to agree strongly with the statement that government outreach using tools such as blogs, social networking sites or text messaging 'helps people be more informed about what the government is doing' and 'makes government agencies and officials more accessible'."
  • On Twitter:  Black people make up 25 percent of Twitter users, according to new data from Edison Research, "roughly twice their share of the population in general."  You can request a copy of the report here, or watch the results in the webinar video below.


Twitter Usage in America 2010 from Tom Webster on Vimeo.
  • On mobile devices:  Pew also established that African-Americans are the most active and fastest-growing audience using mobile devices to access the Internet--so much so that the "digital divide" between whites and blacks disappears when mobile Internet use is accounted for. And both blacks and Hispanics were more likely than whites to have ever gone online with a mobile device, or to have done so on a typical day; both groups were more likely than whites to own a cell phone. If this is your audience, optimizing your sites for mobile access should be a priority. 

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