By Erin Conrad

Originally published on MediaPost.

In an era of social media dominance, it comes as no surprise that visual content reigns supreme. The Latina social influencer community, in particular, distinctly prefer visual platforms like Snapchat, Instagram and Pinterest. Why? The top Latina influencers tend to cover beauty, fashion and travel categories, making visual content key when crafting their stories. In fact, Hispanic Pinterest users increased to 21% in 2014, up from 18% the year before but is still a developing platform for Latinas and nearly 34% of Hispanics use Instagram, compared to 21% of white adult Internet users.

With more and more content being generated every day, visuals are a simple way to stand out from the pack of social influencers. For Latina bloggers, photos and especially video content enables them to communicate ideas in spite of language barriers. When it comes to video, Hispanics are more likely to visit video-sharing sites like YouTube, versus non-Hispanics (81% versus 69%). They also spend more time consuming digital video online and on mobile devices than the general market. A Nielsen report found that Hispanics spend over 90 minutes more watching video than other users. For brands that have placed a high priority on connecting and engaging with Latino consumers online, visual content like video a key part of their social strategy.

In general, Latinos look to and value the opinions of their “inner circle” when making purchase decisions or learning something new. Until recently, there was little culturally relevant content available. Unlike television, where Latino audiences were forced to wait for producers to create shows or cast Latino leads, the emergence of social media enabled to Latinos create their own video content.

Shows from traditional television media channels like Univision and Telemundo were not reaching the entire population and young, bi-cultural Latinos were looking for non-stereotypical representation in both English and Spanish. The same gap was felt in brand marketing. Most marketers traditionally think that Hispanic marketing means translating English messages into Spanish, the right messaging and cultural cues are what resonate most with the largest part of the population. For brands, focus should be cultural relevance and who is creating the content versus the language it is created in.

As social media continues to grow in popularity and new platforms appear, the importance of these tools for Latino influencers will remain strong. With newer, visual-focused channels like Periscope overtaking more “traditional” text-heavy platforms, it will be exciting to watch how this influencer community uses and embraces these tools.

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