Digilats Study Reveals What Makes Latin American Internet Users Tick

Today, JWT announced their inaugural Latin America-centered digital study.

Digilats, a research initiative that explores digital trends and behaviors in nine key LATAM markets, characterizes modern Latin American Internet users by examining what motivates them and how brands can better meet their evolving needs.

“Understanding our consumers and the world around us is critical to success,” said Stefano Zunino, CEO of JWT LATAM and Head of Digital Worldwide. “To stay ahead of the rapidly evolving trends in how consumers engage with brands, we are harnessing data to find new insights, innovative brand strategies, and ideas that drive business for our clients.”

Across the markets examined, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Puerto Rico and Venezuela, the study identifies five distinct user types:

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 5.35.59 PM1. The Checklisters

For Checklisters, engagement with the web is mainly about convenience. They make up 23 percent of the digital population and use the Internet primarily as a tool to keep in touch with family and friends, and for research prior to making a purchase.  Their focus on purchase research makes them a prime engagement target for marketers looking to optimize their digital path to purchase.

2. The Cautious Sideliners

These users are noted for being concerned about their privacy and security online. While Cautious Sideliners like learning new things on the Internet, they lag behind the other types in engagement with all digital activities other than email. They are also the smallest digital persona in LATAM, with only 11 percent falling in this group. They engage with social networks less frequently and tend to have the fewest connections. Online transparency is the key to engaging with this group.

3. The Social Enthusiasts

For Social Enthusiasts (20 percent of users), it is all about staying connected to friends and family and what’s going on in the world around them, which at times leads them to be more susceptible to FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). They are voracious multimedia consumers, and given their social media savvy, will be more difficult for marketers to engage and entertain.

4. The Web Scouts

Web Scouts love scouring the web for information about things that interest them. They regularly read about a wide array of topics online and use the web to find content, products and services that aren’t readily available in their local markets. They are less interested in creating a digital brand for themselves on social networks and more interested in a pragmatic channel for information.

5. The Addicted Netizens

Addicted Netizens are the most digitally engaged type and want to be connected all of the time – day or night. They even experience anxiety when they can’t surf the web. They have the highest number of existing brand connections online, and engage highly with the web across multiple activities. As expected, Addicted Netizens tend be a bit younger and access the web across multiple devices. The opportunity for marketers to engage with these users online is very strong, but the engagement needs to be smart, creative, unique and original for this is a net savvy group.

Digilats is the result of a custom survey by JWT SONAR™, an in-house global insights and research team, created in partnership with leading planners from LATAM markets to design, execute and analyze quantitative and qualitative research. The study, conducted from May 17–June 1, 2013, reflects data gathered from a survey of 9,000 adults aged 18+ as well as insights from leadership and planners in the nine markets.

“As advertisers it is our role to harness the influences of culture and technology to engage consumers. Through Digilats we are aiming to better understand the Latin American market in the digital age, while identifying opportunities for our clients to not just respond, but drive change to grow their business,” says Gustavo Martinez, Global President JWT Worldwide. “These insights highlight opportunities in some of the most important emerging markets within the LATAM region.”

Download the full report here.