Social networking has become the most popular online activity worldwide, passing gaming and checking email and now Social Networking sites now reach 82 percent of the world’s Internet population. The social space, social media has come of age. With the end of the Industrial era and the fast emerging Digital Age – social media is at the center of the world’s evolutionary process. It’s not longer a passing fad, it’s now the established platform on which people world wide connect with each other, share their ideas, activities and interests and yes to do business. In the Caribbean, it’s no different and Caribbean brands can leverage to drive sales and grow their business.
It may be shocking to some that yes, the Spanish and French Caribbean countries lead in internet users as well as time spent being social online, but they’ve trumped the English speaking Caribbean because of the sheer size of their population. Nonetheless, the rise of Social in the Caribbean is exciting!
Here’s a look at the big picture in numbers.
The Caribbean has an estimated population of 41,565,815 people as of 2012. Of that number, 13,480,693 are Internet users (June 30, 2012). We’re currently at an Internet penetration rate of 32.4 %. In short, there’s alot more room to grow. Then of that amount of Caribbean people online, 6,674,100 are on Facebook – the most dominant social platform with over 1 billion members. Again, there’s alot more room to go.
With that as the background, I wanted to show you two ways to look at Social Media and the Caribbean. First the Top 5 most social Caribbean Countries and then the top 5 most social English Speaking Caribbean countries. The information came from the following sources – ITU, Indotel and Internet World Stats and Facebook.
Here are two infographics I did and share them if you believe they can be of value to someone else:
Top 5 Overall Most Social Caribbean Countries
Top 5 English Speaking Most Social Caribbean Countries
Top 3 questions Caribbean Brands Should ask themselves to help them make sense of these Social Caribe trends .
As Social Media has established itself as the way the world connects and do business, a totally different mindset is required of Caribbean brands if they want to remain relevant and growing. It’s a shift from saying “We’re going to do social” to be thinking how can I become a social business.
So it’s not just a matter of going social because everyone else is, so you launch a Facebook Page or a Twitter account and spew more look-at-me, pick-me, like-me messages. Or worse try to bribe people to like your page via giveaways undergirded by zero strategy just so you can grow your numbers and have a braggable point. It’s about how do I integrate and build better relationships with my employees and my customers in this word-of-mouth economy- this one-one-on with your customers marketing ecosystem- this attention economy every single day. That’s how you need to be thinking.
Start by asking yourself these questions
1. Do you know where your current and potential customers are spending time online and how they want to be communicated with ?
2. Do you have an online and on going listening strategy and what’s all that information tell you about your brand and that of your competitors? Know before you go.
3. Have you developed an overall strategy grounded in the answers of why you are choosing to be social, what do you want to achieve?
I am excited about the trend of Social in the Caribbean. In fact we’ve labeled it Social Caribe and in tweeting out information about social media and the Caribbean, via @getConnectid, we’ve been using the hashtag #socialcaribe you will see why over the next few days and weeks. In the meantime, Sign up to receive our free fortnightly email newsletter titled Social Caribe. Click here.