Get high ROI and build brand loyalty with Hispanic search

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Sarah Quinn
Sarah Quinn

Hispanics are the fastest growing segment of the US population, and they have been quick to embrace the online world — eMarketer reports 20 million Hispanic Internet users in the US. Embracing this audience online with equal swiftness can help a company grow its customer base and increase ROI.

Paid search marketing is an effective strategy to reach the online Hispanic community. When they search, customers are already looking for a product, so messages reach them at the right time — during the action phase of their purchase process. With the growing number of US Hispanics online and because there are relatively few bilingual advertisers at this time, getting on board early allows marketers to capture a high ROI now and build competitive advantage for the future.

To develop a successful Hispanic search campaign, one should keep a number of strategies in mind. First, marketers should use a customized, bilingual approach. This applies to many aspects of a search campaign, including language targeting, keywords and creative. Creating separate campaigns using English, Spanish and a bilingual blend can maximize exposure. Remember, US Hispanics hail from 22 countries of origin, with varying language preferences and different levels of US acculturation. Keep this diversity in mind and be sure to include international characters, misspellings, colloquial terms and bilingual-blended phrases. Don't translate directly from English — instead, start fresh and write ads that are culturally relevant. Creating distinct and customized campaigns allows marketers to capture the attention of Hispanic searchers regardless of background.

Next, find the right distribution channels. Google and Yahoo boast Hispanic-targeted syndication partners including Terra, Univision, Telemundo and AOL Latino. According to Forrester Research, Hispanics spend about 17 hours per week consuming content online, 55% of which is in Spanish. Keeping this in mind, content- and placement-targeted campaigns, which distribute ads on relevant complementary content, are additional highly lucrative opportunities to reach this target audience.

Most importantly, marketers should test, test and test again. Search is a constantly evolving medium, and Spanish-language and bilingual search are new developments — search engines are not yet quite certain how to treat certain aspects of it. Starting with what works in English is OK, but it's important to remember the target audience and continually experiment to find the best fit.

Because there is little to no competition in Spanish right now, keyword bids are relatively low. These low costs per click translate into high ROI. With a portfolio approach, marketers can afford to run a broad list of keywords and still meet or exceed goals.

A well-constructed Hispanic search campaign can help achieve high ROI now. By starting early and building history with search engines, a marketer can develop a solid quality score so that when others start catching on, it will still be on top. It will also build brand loyalty with Hispanic Internet users and have a better chance of maintaining positive ROI well into the future.

squinn@Hispanictargeting.com

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