Vertical Draft: Tweeting in Latin America

August 4, 2009 at 8:01 am 1 comment

Section Two : Case Studies design

Chapter x : Tweeting in Latin America

Opening

On June 28, 2009, Honduras ousted its president, Manuel Zelaya. Within minutes a hashtag in Twitter to follow this story was created #honduras. The response of people from all over the world would was reflected on the number of tweets and the tweets up to August 1st continue to be posted; just in a period of 24 hours 714 tweet were posted under the #honduras.

On July 5, 2009, Mexico had its legislative elections and within hours a hashtag was created #votonulo, requesting that Mexicans vote “NO VOTE”. According the CNN en Español this made a difference on the way that Mexican people voted that day, about 6% of the Mexican population voted “NO VOTE”. 6% and in Areas like Mexico City (city with 30M people) and Guadalajara (city with xM people) the “NO VOTE” reached 11%. This has never happened in Mexico before, according to CNN en Español.

In Chile the presidential elections are around the corner and for Marco Enriquez-Ominami needs about thirty thousand supporters to become an official presidential candidate from an independent party.  The hard part in this is that in order to show their support, these thirty thousand voters need to go to a public notary and notarize that they support Marco Enriquez-Ominami, which can be a setback for many of his supporters as they have to take time off work or school to take care of this. However, Marco Enriquez-Ominami is using social media tools including Twitter to organize and facilitate that process. He has establish a conversation on Twitter with his followers. Many call Marco the Chilean Obama (Obama chileno).

Twitter has shown that it does not have geographical limitation. Twitter can cross them to unite people who are geographically separated and Latin America is not the exception. For example Brazil is among the five countries in the world that use this microblog the most (Brazil makes up for 2% of the world population that uses Twiter http://www.sysomos.com/insidetwitter/). Considering that only x% in Latin America have access to internet and x% to computers, one of the tools that is helping this Twitter phenomenon to grow in this part of the world is the mobile technology (cell phones).  But how is Twitter been used in Latin America? Why is the use of Twitter in Latin America Important?

This chapter explore three main areas in which Twitter is been used; politics, media and retail. In addition it will show some cultural aspects that are important to consider before the implementation of this microblog as well as the venue or venues to use in Latin America.

Why This Sector?

Politics:

Twitter in Latin America in the area of politics is playing a very important role in the changes that people and politicians interact.

Media: As family structures continues to change and the current economy force many in Latin America to work two jobs or extra hours, it creates time restrains for many Latinos who used to read the newspapers print version, but now with more limits in time, being able to only read those news that interest them without spending time searching for them has facilitate the old ritual of reading the news.  Twitter is a platform that offers exactly that, short headlines of the most relevant news with links to the full story facilitate the news experience for Latinos that can receive them on their computer or mobile while they ride the metro or the bus to get to their jobs or where ever they need to go (x% ride public transportation in Latin America).

Twitter is an excellent tool to receive the latest news headlines that can be read in short periods of times.  As more news organizations in Latino America adopt the use of this microblog tool, people will have more access to the latest news without having to spend hours reading a newspaper or watching/listening to tv or radio news.

Now twitter presents a platform that not only offers the headlines of the latest news, it also allows the audience to participate; they can share, comment or debate the news and they can do it while they ride the bus, cook, or taking a break using their cell phones. The audience now can be informed from a world catastrophe to which soccer team won.

Newspaper in Latin America are looking for innovative ways to keep their readers inform and some have enter to the “conversation” with their audience by using social media tools.  One great example of this new model is El Universal de Mexico that had incorporated Twitter since xxx. They created @el_universal_mx.  Currently they have xxx followers….*Elaborate more about what El Universal is doing using the questionnaire.

Retail: In the past years the role of the Latino women has changed enormously.  The fact that South America has two women as presidents is the best example to show this change (Michele Bachelet in Chile and Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner in Argentina). Before the vast majority of Latino women used to stay home, however, this practice has been change with the years and with this the use of technology has become more important to facilitate the many roles that Latino women has to play; professional, mother, wife, daughter etc. Retail plays an important aspect of this, because women can buy on line or keep themselves informed on the latest sales that their favorite retail stores offer.

Twitter is a tool that facilitates the time restrain that many women have due to their multiple roles and also it makes it easier for men to help, as shopping on line or check social media is not a women’s thing. The fact that Twitter limits its messages to 140 characters only, makes it viable in terms of time limitations that Latino families are facing now as both parents work.

Also the use of mobile technology in this case cell phones is the technology that has reach critical mass in most of Latin America and the fact that Twitter can be access through text message service or through mobiles that have internet accessibility facilitates the use of Twitter in this part of the world.

Not many retail stores are participating in Latin America, however as more retail stores implement this tools as part of their business model, it will be important to know how to implemented, how to avoid sounding like adds and sounding more like humans as they enter to the big “conversation” with their consumers.  Jumbo can serve as a great example of this for many retails to come. Currently Jumbo has stores in Chile and Argentina.  On April 14, 2009, Jumbo created @jumbotienda to maintain their consumers informed about their latest offers. However, with time this model change and currently they not only offer information about their sales, they offer much more.  They offer a human voice that allows a flowing conversation between Jumbo and their audience.

Jumbo uses Twitter to provide short conversational messages and links to latest recipes, information about their products, their new and future projects and to a list of new/sale products. They take the time to say great their audience, to suggest a cup of coffee in the morning, to drive carefully or simply to comment about the weather. Currently they have xxx of followers *Add more about Jumbo, talk about their twitter profile and questionnaire.

Methodology

The areas of politics, media and retail were selected for the Latin American sector as these are the areas in which Twitter has grown the most.  The criteria I use was based first to find out if they were also using other social media tools or only Twitter.  This was important because even though Twitter is an important tool without the other social media tools it will be difficult for a complete conversation.  For example as part of the conversation in Twitter Jumbo exchanges recipes with its audience, but Twitter is not the platform to post the entire recipe, therefore a blog or a tool like Facebook are needed (Jumbo has a blog and a Facebook account).

1. Use of other social media to complement Twitter.

2. First to use Twitter in their areas and countries.

3. Using Twitter as a conversation and not marketing only, in the case of newspapers and radio, they provide headlines to any news, but all their news have blogs/comment section for the audience to comment or asks questions.

4. They have to be housed in Latin America or their main audience is the Latino community.

5. Be currently active in Twitter.

6. Be well recognized in their area of business (have years of experience in the business area)

How Is Twitter Used In This Sector?

Case Study 1 : Politics; Marisol Turres (House of Representatives, Chile), #Honduras, # votonulo, Marco Enriquez-Ominami.

Why this organization? What is its history of social media use? How is it using Twitter? Why is it using Twitter? What is the problem/opportunity?  Policies? Obstacles overcome? [narrative comes from the Q/A — look for good quotes and tweets that can be used as call-outs]

  • Screen Shot
  • Stats (followers, following, number tweets, date joined, first tweet)
  • Pie chart (link tweets, @ tweets, RTs, other)
  • Elements that will be “graded”
  • External analytical data (tool TBD)

Case Study 2 : Media; @el_universal_mx, @emol and @cooperativa

Why this organization? What is its history of social media use? How is it using Twitter? Why is it using Twitter? What is the problem/opportunity?  Policies? Obstacles overcome? [narrative comes from the Q/A — look for good quotes and tweets that can be used as call-outs]

  • Screen Shot
  • Stats (followers, following, number tweets, date joined, first tweet)
  • Pie chart (link tweets, @ tweets, RTs, other)
  • Elements that will be “graded”
  • External analytical data (tool TBD)

Case Study 3: Retail, Jumbo (Grocery store in Chile and Argentina)

Why this organization? What is its history of social media use? How is it using Twitter? Why is it using Twitter? What is the problem/opportunity?  Policies? Obstacles overcome? [narrative comes from the Q/A — look for good quotes and tweets that can be used as call-outs]

  • Screen Shot
  • Stats (followers, following, number tweets, date joined, first tweet)
  • Pie chart (link tweets, @ tweets, RTs, other)
  • Elements that will be “graded”
  • External analytical data (tool TBD)

Thought Leaders

Recommendations on who to follow in this sector and why. Rationale: the value of Twitter rises in  proportion to a person’s network.

Lessons Learned / Recommendations

Technology

Cultural

Twitter profile

Entry filed under: Vertical Draft. Tags: , , , .

Chapter Outline: Tweeting in Latin America Second Draft: Tweeting in Latin America

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. kegill  |  August 11, 2009 at 1:22 pm

    Intriguing opening! Link to the CNN source (and provide end note references as well).

    In the ‘how is it used” section, you’ll want narrative. See Paolo’s second draft.

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