More than 500 years ago, European colonizers got surprised by the richness and beauty of the “New World”. One they hadn’t been aware of because of their erroneous self-centered theories or their lack of courage and imagination to face the dangers and mysteries of the sea, and look further than the skyline in front of their eyes.
by Martin Carniglia , Data & Media Consulting Manager, DBi Latin America (Havas)
We are now close to what seems to be a new inflection point, where the wealth of connected people, and the abundance of business opportunities will surprise the ones who dare to care about Latin America’s Data arouse.
Now more Latin People than ever are connected
In a region that represents almost 8,5% of global population, Internet Users already rise over 10% from world total figures. Internet penetration overcomes 65% over total population in 8 countries across the region: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Panama, Puerto Rico and Uruguay. Yes, don’t go back and try to find on the list other big countries in the region, such as Mexico, Colombia or Peru. They are still under that level with forecast figures going up faster in the next few years, followed by the smaller markets.
*Source: US Census Bureau, Nielsen-Online, ITU, Facebook, © Miniwatts Group
Social Media is part of our daily lives
Social networks are also hugged over the region: seven Latin American markets rank among the world’s top 25 for Facebook total amount of users users, close to Europe level.
Some countries such as Argentina, Brazil and Mexico show spend time and daily connection figures that rank in top 5 level worldwide. Facebook penetration rates have an average level over 50%, with some countries even higher than North America level.
Mobile technology is araising
The size of the overall market in the region, and its potential for ongoing growth, continues to attract investment from international Telcos (Telefonica, America Movil and Millicom being the leaders across the region) and local cable & Internet service providers that expand their offering.
Improved mobile 4G technology has stimulated the adoption of smartphones among consumers, which in turn has led to increasing mobile data traffic and consequently the ability of network operators to develop revenue growth.
In the fixed-line sector, fibre backhaul networks have proliferated, giving access and broadband highspeed connections to new areas. This has partly been stimulated by regulatory efforts to promote the sharing of network components, but also by the take-up among consumer of bundled packages requiring higher bandwidth. The need to future-proof networks to cope with the demands of digital communities has also encouraged telcos and cable companies to invest more.
More Connected People means More Data Access
It’s logical to deduct that from here to less than five years we could be doubling the amount of connected people, and so the quantity of collected data touchpoints.
We are seeing new technology companies and startups that offer Universal Data Hub approaches to leverage information among Desktop, Mobile, POS, beacons and other IoT sources.
From Data integration, Data Management Platforms, through new Stadistical approaches and Machine Learning models connected to Programmatic Buying technologies. The whole ecosystem is already getting available across the whole region.
Integrating data, being able to learn from it and making smart business decisions will be the biggest challenge for all companies across our region.
Contextual and structural barriers are falling down. Online travelers are already engaged, Mobile Sails are Set, and low connection anchor is already coming out from the depths.
The question is, will we be ready as investors, entrepreneurs, marketers, small, middle or big companies to dare and face this upcoming growth? New skills will be required, new integral ways to gather data needed, and more than anything, new capabilities to transform it into insights and better profile or segment our clients.
Latin America is appearing as a promised land, and we should all be ready to start this amazing journey towards Data-Driven Marketing and Communications. Make sure you count with the right maps and the best sailors to face it!
Martin Carniglia, is a 31-year-old Argentinian with vast experience in Digital and Data consulting across LatAm Region. After obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Buenos Aires he joined Havas Group, where he lead Performance team and launched a new department focused on Digital Data. He is currently part of DBi -Data Business Intelligence- consulting team, where he occupies the role of Regional Data & Media Consulting Manager.