Last week JWT released Digilats, a research initiative that explores digital trends and behaviors in nine Latin American markets.

Last week JWT released Digilats, a research initiative that explores digital trends and behaviors in nine Latin American markets. Created in partnership with leading planners from these markets, the study characterizes modern Latin American Internet users, what motivates them and how brands can better meet their evolving needs. The study is based around a survey conducted using SONAR™, JWT’s proprietary online tool, that polled 9,000 adults aged age 18-plus in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Puerto Rico and Venezuela.

Several developing markets in Latin America have outpaced the U.S., the EU and the world average for GDP growth over the last decade, and the study found similar patterns across digital behaviors. Across Latin America, Internet penetration is at 43 percent, above the global average of 34 percent. The study identified five distinct groupings of digital users in the region:

Addicted Netizens: The most digitally engaged type, Addicted Netizens get anxious when they can’t surf the web, since digital is an integrated part of their lives, not just another channel. You’re more likely to find them in Puerto Rico (30 percent of users), Venezuela (28 percent) and Ecuador (27 percent), and least likely to find them in Argentina (14 percent) and Peru (10 percent).

Web Scouts: The most common digital type in Latin America, Web Scouts regularly read about a wide array of topics online and use the web to find content, products and services that aren’t readily available in their local markets. They are less interested in creating a digital brand for themselves on social networks and more interested in a pragmatic channel for information.

Checklisters: Engagement with the web is mainly about convenience for this group, which sees the Internet primarily as a tool to keep in touch with family and friends, and for research prior to making a purchase. They make up 23 percent of the digital population across LATAM and are most prevalent in Peru.

Social Enthusiasts: For these largely young digital types, it is all about staying connected to friends and family and what’s going on in the world around them, which leads them to be susceptible to FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). They are most likely to hail from Colombia, Brazil and Mexico.  

Cautious Sideliners: Prudent individuals noted for their concern about online privacy and security, Cautious Sideliners lag behind the other types in engagement with all digital activities other than email. Only 11 percent fall into this group.

Download the full Digilats report here.