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I was not going to respond any more about the libelous and slanderous posts being perpetuated by the anonymous Think Mexican profile, but since this coward has now begun to personally attack dear friends, I will respond. This will be brief and this will be to-the-point: Think Mexican is currently consciously libeling myself and Latino Rebels. He/She/It is acting with malice. It is simple as that. I have already reported these false posts to all the social networks that have allowed such content to be published.

By consciously displaying malice and exhibiting a desire to disparage me and my group, Think Mexican has shared the following lies:

  • TM has manipulated images and my professional resume (classless).
  • Has “proof” that Jorge Ramos paid us to publish a piece about him (hilarious).
  • Has said that Latino Rebels are in a partnership with Fox News Latino (umm, that is another Latino page).
  • Has said that we are in a marketing relationship with Latinos in Social Media (LATISM). That statement alone is beyond funny, and just sad.
  • Has “proven” that we are working for Televisa because the head of Televisa’s Twitter page is following us. BTW, we are also followed by a guy who looks like Yoda.

For further “proof,” Think Mexican is using a published ABC News profile from earlier this year. That article initially contained several factual errors. After that piece was published, I alerted the reporter, and ABC News had to revise the piece because of those factual errors. ABC News never publicly said that such revisions and corrections were made. During that time, I also expressed my extreme displeasure about how the reporter portrayed my professional career. There was a suggestion that I was a communist (silly) and that Latino Rebels was being funded by bigger clients (since I and the CEO/CFO/GM of Latino Rebels, I can tell you that such a “fact” was also false.) However, unlike Think Mexican, ABC News displayed no malice. It was just sloppy reporting, and I moved on, after letting the reporter know that the piece missed the mark.

But if you want to know, in the past three years, my clients (who bill me through Latino Rebels LLC) have been: four educational curriculum companies who hired me to develop PreK-12 programs; a science curriculum company that needed Spanish translations; a manufacturing company who uses my social media expertise as a community manager; and a major media company that retained my company to run an educational awareness campaign. I have also worked with several friends who needed help in amplifying their messages: whether it is a petition about immigration reform or a story about a young man dying at hands of Bakersfield, CA police. That is what Latino Rebels does. We share untold stories. We don’t run ads on our site and we don’t make money off the site.

What the critics don’t understand and cannot understand is that I also founded LatinoRebels.com as a collective of about 20 people. These are special people who do what they do for the love of the game. They are amazing, and they are my family. I love them, and I would defend them anytime, anywhere. We work really hard to pay our contributors, and there is no secret marketing agenda. The critics just don’t get it because they continue to try and categorize us through a traditional business model. They can’t, and it perplexes them.

Think Mexican lies, and to be honest with you, I have really have no respect for anyone who hides behind an anonymous page. The sad thing of all this is that Think Mexican is falling into the trap that the mainstream wants: keep them all divided, so they can still be conquered. I personally believe in a lot of what Think Mexican does, and respect the content, but I don’t respect personal attacks and fictitious accusations.

Think Mexican celebrates hate and is cheering for failure. I choose love and celebrate my friends.

TM

Think Mexican can call me any name in the book, and he/she/it can disagree with me all he/she/it wants, but spreading fabrications and claiming that it is TRUTH is a slippery slope. But what do you expect from an anonymous person who is actively promoting a campaign for me to fail?

Bring it.

I am Bronx and Think Mexican lacks courage and character.

Dignity comes from honesty and being real. How can an anonymous profile be real when he/she/it is anonymous? But if he/she/it wants to keep hating me, I welcome it. It only makes me stronger.

I started my career 25 years ago as a journalist,  and I  have been filing/editing/reporting new stories for the last five years through good old-fashioned reporting. My blogs have kept my love of journalism alive. Many of those stories made national news outlets. That is called hard work and dedication, and such a philosophy is not driven by money. To be honest with you, at 44 years old, I don’t do this for money. I do this because I love it.

Now I have returned to journalism. In this economy, I am blessed to have a steady job again. Such an opportunity has grounded me, and I feel like I am 23 years old, when I was young editor working for a company that was family to me. For a long time, that sense of family was lost, and the Rebels helped me find it.

This is the last thing I will ever say about this sad situation.

And if Think Mexican continues to lie, the next response won’t come from me.

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Before I start, I was really happy to see so many familiar faces and people who made the Forbes’ list of 2013 Social Media Power Users. People like Ted Rubin, Chris Brogan, Ann Handley, Jessica Northey, Aaron Lee, Mari Smith, Calvin Lee, Jeff Bullis, Gary Vaynerchuk, etc. are all amazing people, and I am really happy to see them get listed.

However, the overall list sadly lacks in diversity, and it specifically ignores well-known and established Latino Power Users. Again. It is becoming a common and disturbing trend, one that needs to stop.

The author of the piece, Haydn Shaughnessy, could have clearly dug a little deeper when it comes to “influence.” Yes, he established his criteria through Peek Analytics, with the assumption that this is all about “reach.” (By the way, my Peek is 327.) That is only part of the full picture. Reach only takes you so far. It is the quality of your reach that matters. For example, my company Latino Rebels has become a go-to source for many members of the national media. Our community is highly loyal and highly engaged, and it serves a demographic (bilingual, bicultural young Latinos) that is the new “hot” demo. How do you measure that influence? By a Peek score? Or by people who come to your site and social media networks every day, who want to engage you and want to support you? The real Power User builds lasting relationships, and while many of the 2013 Forbes Power Users listed do follow that course, many others on the list do not. And that is why the list fails, in my opinion.

hireslogo

So I ask again: where are the Latino Power Users? Does Shaughnessy not know about Latism or Hispanicize? Does he not know about Elianne Ramos (the Latism Reina) or Laura Gómez (the first Latina at Twitter)? These are just two very specific examples of Power Users who have earned the respect, love, and credibility of the Latino digital community. I could also give Shaughnessy about 20-30 names, but I wonder if he even read this opinion piece from the HuffPost that speaks to how Latinos just can no longer be ignored in the social space:

Latinos, who have been recorded as the group with the highest rate of early adopters are continuously embracing technology faster than any other demographic in the United States.

According to a report by Pew Internet and American Life Project, 18 percent of Latinos online are Twitter users, a greater percentage than their counterparts in every other category.

On Facebook, Latinos are also using the social media platform at a higher rate than their counterparts, with 54.2 percent of Latinos online regularly using Facebook, just above non-Latino blacks at 47.7 percent and non-Latino whites at 43 percent, according to marketing company Big Research.

Successful organizations such as United We Dream and Latism have been able to implement positive change within their communities because they not only understand Latinos, they also know how to successfully engage them. To give you an idea of their reach, United We Dream has 4,911 Twitter followers and over 13,000 “Likes” on Facebook, and Latism has over 23,000 Twitter followers and over 150,000 “Likes” on Facebook.

Or did he even read this 2012 report from Nielsen?

Social is another platform where Latinos are especially active and rising in numbers.  During February 2012, Hispanics increased their visits to Social Networks/Blogs by 14 percent compared to February 2011.  Not only are Latinos the fastest growing U.S. ethnic group on Facebook and WordPress.com from a year ago, but also Hispanic adults are 25 percent more likely to follow a brand and 18 percent more likely to follow a celebrity than the general online population.

Do you think that this happens by accident? No. It is because there is a very dynamic and influential group of Latino Power Users who are building real communities each and every day.

I know that many of those 2013 Forbes Power Users understand that the Latino social space is thriving. Last week at Hispanicize in Miami, for example, I ran into one 2013 Power User (and fellow Knick Fan) Ted Rubin, who was at that conference and making serious connections. Because Ted gets it, and he’s nice, too. Latinos are the future of social media, and I won’t accept Shaughnessy’s list for the very simple reason that it only gives you a narrow mainstream view of social media.

Forbes and Shaughnessy failed again by excluding several Latino Power Users on its list. You know why? Because they don’t have a clue about what is really happening in that space, and they have shown no desire to learn more about that space. So they follow the safe choice, because safe is not risky.

I sure hope that one day Shaughnessy actually starts engaging the Latino Power Users more and more. He might learn a thing or two.

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There are so many feelings going through my head after news that Boston City Councilor Felix G. Arroyo announced his candidacy for mayor, making him the first Latino in the city’s history to run for this post.

The strongest feeling, of course, is one of pride and joy. Arroyo is a Boston boricua, the son-in-law of Hector Luis Acevedo, a former mayor of San Juan. Having lived and worked in my adopted home city since 1986, yesterday’s announcement marked another turning point that Boston is indeed a changing city, one that is changing for the better.

Felix Arroyo

I have rarely felt like this during my time in the self-proclaimed Hub of the Universe, since to me, Boston has always been a city of separate neighborhoods that rarely get connected. The city’s ugly racial past of the 1970s, based on a failed social experiment, lingered for a while—yes, even on the Harvard campus in the mid-1980s. There was this unspoken rule in Boston that the city’s neighborhoods should never mix. The city was segregated: Bostonians would converge in the city’s downtown center for work each day, but when it was time to go home, different groups of people when to their different neighborhoods. Don’t cause any problems. Just know your place.

That image of Boston, of course, has changed, especially with the city’s perceptions of Latinos. I have always credited this to the Red Sox. I have been going to Fenway Park since 1986, and as much as I have always loved it, I truly fell madly in love with it when Pedro Martínez started pitching for the team in the late 1990s. The atmosphere whenever Pedro pitched was magical, but it also brought out so many fans who would have never gone to a Red Sox game before Pedro pitched. Spanish conversations became more common in the stands, Dominican flags flew, and when I heard 440’s “Guavaberry” over the stadium’s speakers for the first time, I knew that a another real part of the city, one that was rarely seen inside one of the city’s most beloved gathering places, was starting to show up.

Then, David Ortiz became a legend in 2004, and all of a sudden it was cool to be Latino in Boston. The Big Papi Effect did more for Boston Latinos than almost anything else. We had arrived.

Arroyo’s news is just the latest example. Boston’s Latino population continues to grow rapidly, and it is part of the reason that Boston is now a “majority-minority city,” which means that “53 percent of residents are of a non-white race/ethnicity.” I do believe that Arroyo will attract new Latino voters, no doubt. But don’t take my word for it, I will let my good friend and fellow WGBH Radio contributor Marcela García explain. Last night, Marcela talked Arroyo on WGBH’s “Greater Boston” show.

Arroyo’s bid matters. Is it on the same level as when the city’s Irish population earned their political stripes at the turn of the century, culminating in the mayoral reign of James Michael Curley? I would argue yes. Granted, Arroyo might not win this year (it is going to be a tough race), but if Boston Latinos want to be part of the city’s political structure, they need to start somewhere. Arroyo could be that.

Yes, Marcela is right that Arroyo would be the first person to shun the “first Latino candidate” label, but he will still energize people. And the other guest who disagreed with her, Jarrett Berrios (coincidentally a Harvard classmate of mine), misses the point. The city now had its first Latino candidate for mayor and Latino voters should just worry about the issues and think beyond ethnicity politics? Sorry, Jarrett, that argument doesn’t work. You seriously don’t think that ethnicity politics no longer occurs in Boston? Do I need to bring you to a South Boston union hall to show you that it still does?

Sure, Arroyo still has to prove himself, but let’s put this all into perspective. This is history.

“I am a son of Boston. I love my city. I love Boston. I believe in ­Boston because I know that by working together we can and we will move Boston forward.”

Spoken like a true Bostonian. Who also happens to be Puerto Rican and Latino. To me, that is a winning combination, and no one can kill my buzz this morning.

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This is the LAST of the posts about Facebook engagement and which Latino-themed pages are the most engaging from a sample of pages that are commonly visited. Hopefully by now, I don’t have to explain much about this little experiment that started in March. But just in case, you can read about the background here. Let’s just get into it.

Who, among a sample of a few pages, is the most engaging Latino Facebook Page at the beginning of December? Let’s see below. Anything above 15% is really strong. Anything above 40% is outstanding. Anything above 40% is beyond ridiculous and on another level.

Ok, here is the the last and final list. It is December. (numbers based on page checks on December 8, 2012 from midnight-1 am EST; full disclosure: Latino Rebels is my organization. Also, this is just a data capture from a limited time window. We know that the “people talking about this” feature can fluctuate. This is not an exact science, but it does prove that having a highly engaged community will always benefit your brand, organization, group, etc.)

December’s Sampling of Latino Facebook Pages and Their Facebook Level of Engagement (FLOE)

  1. One Voice Radio: 293% (1,601 likes · 4,697 talking about this)
  2. Rico Puerto Rico: 259% (75,710 likes · 196,344 talking about this)
  3. Cultura: 275% (3,577 likes · 9,844 talking about this)
  4. Ford en español: 86.4% (4,515 likes · 3,904 talking about this)
  5. SoLatina: 80% (62,927 likes · 50,347 talking about this)
  6. Latino Rebels: 71.2% (26,512 likes · 19,003 talking about this)
  7. Pocho.com: 61.2% (2,919 likes · 1,785 talking about this)
  8. Pa’lante Latino: 46.2% (2,147 likes · 993 talking about this)
  9. El Diario NY: 39.2% (42,864 likes · 16,841 talking about this)
  10. MundoFox: 39% (78,876 likes · 30,751 talking about this)
  11. So Mexican: 29% (1,813,907 likes · 525,850 talking about this)
  12. NBC Latino: 23.3% (38,985 likes · 9,071 talking about this)
  13. National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts: 22.3% (3,953 likes · 881 talking about this)
  14. Fit Latina: 20.8% (1,627 likes · 339 talking about this)
  15. Disney World Latino: 17.1% (113,350 likes · 19,401 talking about this)
  16. Being Latino: 16.2% (82,695 likes · 13,390 talking about this)
  17. Gozamos: 15.6% (4,641 likes · 723 talking about this)
  18. People en español: 14.9% (204,598 likes · 30,431 talking about this)
  19. Univision News: 13.6% (8,546 likes · 1,164 talking about this)
  20. Presente.org: 12.1% (11,408 likes · 1,381 talking about this)
  21. Sofrito for Your Soul: 11.7% (9,881 likes · 1,159 talking about this)
  22. The Big Tino: 11.2% (61,837 likes · 6,911 talking about this)
  23. Think Mexican: 10.8% (5,541 likes · 597 talking about this)
  24. Cuéntame: 10.7% (94,670 likes · 10,173 talking about this)
  25. Proud to Be Latina: 9.5% (1,932 likes · 183 talking about this)
  26. Primer impacto: 9.2% (304,755 likes · 28,022 talking about this)
  27. Being Puerto Rican: 9.2% (22,557 likes · 2,092 talking about this)
  28. Mayo Clinic (Español): 9.2% (2,973 likes · 275 talking about this)
  29. Telemundo: 8.7% (377,842 likes · 32,732 talking about this)
  30. Despierta América: 7.7% (184,674 likes · 14,177 talking about this)
  31. Latina Bloggers Connect: 7.5% (2,181 likes · 164 talking about this)
  32. Univision: 7.1% (645,898 likes · 46,002 talking about this)
  33. CNN en español: 7% (1,288,763 likes · 92,838 talking about)
  34. Mexican Word of the Day: 7% (1,321,428 likes · 92,523 talking about this)
  35. Mamiverse: 7% (19,600 likes · 1,368 talking about this)
  36. SpanglishBaby: 6.9% (8,242 likes · 565 talking about this)
  37. Los Pichy Boys: 6.9% (17,322 likes · 1,197 talking about this)
  38. Remezcla: 6.7% (12,310 likes · 827 talking about this)
  39. Latina: 6.7% (79,384 likes · 5,343 talking about this)
  40. News Taco: 6.4% (4,416 likes · 283 talking about this)
  41. HuffPost Latino Voices: 6.3% (9,026 likes · 565 talking about this)
  42. Cosmo for Latinas: 6% (10,812 likes · 645 talking about this)
  43. Voto Latino: 5.7% (53,762 likes · 3,070 talking about this)
  44. VOXXI: 5.5% (13,572 likes · 748 talking about this)
  45. Mun2: 5.2% (256,290 likes · 13,421 talking about this)
  46. Latina Mom Bloggers: 5.2% (1,590 likes · 82 talking about this)
  47. Ask a Mexican: 5.1% (37,772 likes · 1,922 talking about this)
  48. Calle 13: 5% (1,725,044 likes · 86,944 talking about this)
  49. Es el momento: 4.2% (15,355 likes · 644 talking about this)
  50. Immigrant Archive Project: 4% (12,475 likes · 493 talking about this)
  51. Hispanicize: 3.8% (5,372 likes · 205 talking about this)
  52. National Council of La Raza: 3.5% (21,947 likes · 752 talking about this)
  53. Pitbull: 3% (26,094,325 likes · 790,462 talking about this)
  54. Fox News Latino: 3% (72,218 likes · 2,201 talking about this)
  55. El Gordo y la Flaca: 2.7% (354,425 likes · 9,774 talking about this)
  56. New Latina: 2.6% (4,721 likes · 123 talking about this)
  57. Hispanically Speaking News: 2.2% (3,250 likes · 72 talking about this)
  58. Somos Verizon Fios: 2.1% (49,690 likes · 1,035 talking about this)
  59. Latina List: 2.1% (3,095 likes · 66 talking about this)
  60. Toyota Latino: 1.5% (75,708 likes · 1,107 talking about this)
  61. Latino Justice: 1.3% (2,684 likes · 36 talking about this)
  62. Shakira: 1.2% (57,369,298 likes · 694,870 talking about this)
  63. Selena Gómez: 1.2% (36,542,613 likes · 452,137 talking about this)
  64. Papi Blogger: 1% (855 likes · 10 talking about this)
  65. American Latino Museum: .008% (122,115 likes · 1,099 talking about this)
  66. Latinos in Social Media: .006% (150,728 likes · 924 talking about this)

Thank you to all who followed this little experiment this year. Happy 2013!

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Once a columnist, always a columnist. A looooong time ago, when computers were just DEC screens, I used to pen a column called VARELITAS for The Harvard Crimson. Ever since those days in 1988, I have always enjoyed writing columns, and when I started blogging on this page in 2008, I recalled my early days as a columnist for The Crimson. My blog posts have always reminded me that I am a columnist/journalist/reporter at heart. I love to write, and it is one of the main reasons why I formed this page, and why I later formed Latino Rebels. Media in the new digital age fascinates me, and how we approach it through a US Latino perspective fascinates me even more.

This week, I just learned that I have become a contributor to NBC Latino, one of the world’s fastest-growing Latino news sites. I am absolutely thrilled to be joining a growing list of contributors whose insight and opinions I respect immensely. I sincerely believe that this core group of contributors are producing some very thought-provoking content, and I am happy to be part of the group.

Now, this does not mean that this blog will be going away or that you have seen the last of the Rebels. I will still write posts here, as well as under my “Julito” byline for the Rebeldes. This is just an opportunity for me to write on another platform as a contributor. I plan to use that platform just like I have used other platforms: to write to the best of my abilities and keep the conversation going about what it is to be Latino in 21st century.

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I knew the moment that I published a video challenging some in the Latino blogosphere to step up its game and be consistent in how we share and produce content when it comes to portrayals of Latinos on television, that I would catch some flak. I knew that my intentions and integrity would be questioned, and that some would see me as a divider and not as a uniter. I seriously thought this all out and the consequences it would bring, but in the end, I felt that I had to say something in public with the hope that we can all have a real dialogue about this.

I still stand by the fact that we do our community a disservice and mislead readers when we as bloggers participate in sponsored campaigns that speak to the “new, fresh” original programming for US Latinos when in fact we are just getting the same old, same old. (In this case, a cop show from Colombia, which leads into a show about a Colombian drug dealer. Five times a week. In primetime.) I also felt that we miss the point when we do solicited reviews that arise from a sponsored campaign and then all the reviews being published about MUNDO FOX’S “Corazones blindados” are highly positive. Who would have thought that every blog I have read from this sponsored campaign has been positive? I have yet to see one negative review. (If there is one, please post a link down here and let me know.)

What is interesting is that now I am getting criticisms for cutting down my colleagues and questioning their ethics. I have already been told that I  don’t have a clue because one blog in question has a clear disclosure policy and all their disclaimers are at the end of a post. I get told about FTC guidelines, not doing my research, and I also get called out for tearing the community down. I have also gotten a few private messages basically telling me that I was irresponsible and divisive. However, I am encouraged by the fact that I am getting more responses from people in private and some in public who have said that this issue should have been brought up. They key to all this is simple: agencies and bloggers can do all the sponsored campaigns they like, but please don’t rope along the community using a sponsored campaign that proudly proclaims that FINALLY something different is here on TV when in fact, it is just more of the same.

Yet, instead of having a real discussion about stereotypes in Latino media, I am now being called unprofessional for not telling the truth about the blogs and disclosure. I am now told that I messed up and that the sponsored posts are not compensated and that I missed the whole point about what a sponsored blog is.

Here is what is wrong about that specific criticism (and I am still waiting to hear about the bigger point being made about Latino stereotypes, which is the main point I made in the video): I still stand by the fact that many influential blogs in the Latino space are not being transparent enough about their disclosures. I also understand that people need to make a living by blogging. I am just suggesting that the disclosures need to go beyond a policy one someone’s page that quite frankly, no one reads anyway when they are reading a post.

Transparency starts with the blogger and the agency that promotes that blogger, and in the end, whenever I am in doubt, I alway ask myself: What would Chris Brogan do? Now, Chris is the first person to tell you that sponsored blogs and getting paid for your posts are good things. And he offers a great link for all bloggers to create their own disclosure policy (by the way, I don’t use a general disclosure policy on this personal blog because when I do, I try to disclose it up front on a post-by-post basis. The same goes for LatinoRebels.com)

However, because Chris is Chris and he always goes out his way to raise the bar, he is extremely clear when his posts are sponsored. For example, look at what he does in this case:

From this one example from Chris, what do we see?

  1. A clear “Sponsored Post” leading the blog title.
  2. A very strong and visible disclaimer that is in a larger font and clear. We know immediately, before we even begin to read the post, that is a post that a brand sponsored for Chris. He also says that his opinions are his own, 100%. In addition, the content of the post is his, original, and he is honest about the review. He also says that the brand suggested he write about certain features, but in the end, Chris just writes his own opinion and lets his review speak for himself.
  3. He goes beyond the FTC guidelines and doesn’t hide from the fact that he is doing a sponsored post.

What Chris does here is set a very simple and honest standard that all bloggers and agencies should aspire to. Instead of vague unclear statements at the end of a post (how many people read disclaimers at the end of a post anyway?), be up front and clear. Don’t assume that people will go click on another tab on your site and take the time to read your 300-word disclaimer policy. And also if you say you are part of a sponsored campaign, explain that before you get into writing your review, and be ready to answer the questions as to why most of the posts in the sponsored campaign are very similar in intent and scope. Learning about the fact after reading a sponsored post you didn’t know was sponsored to begin with only leads to disappointment for your readers and raises ethical issues that may or may not be accurate in your mind, but they still raise questions. Then explaining via comments and messages after the fact only begs the question: why weren’t you up front with it at the post level at the very beginning of the post and follow an example like the one Chris did?

Other questions I think that bloggers should consider regarding sponsored posts:

  • Is this something I really want to promote to my readers? If so, how do I find the right balance between writing for or about a brand and not sacrificing the relationship I have with my readers?
  • What is the intent of the brand or agency? Is their goal just to get the word out to take advantage of what you have worked so hard to build, or are they really sincere in promoting you as well? This relationship is a two-way street, and brands are no longer bigger or better than the blogosphere. They are equals, and will they treat you as such? The most successful campaigns I have been involved with have always allowed the blogger to be independent from what the brand would like you to write about, and yet these same brands have also promoted the blog posts on their own networks and pages. That type of arrangement becomes a true two-way relationship.
  • Do you want to monetize your blog and is working with a brand the best way to go? Have you thought of other ideas, like creating your own products (like t-shirts, books, etc.) or starting your own commerce site of your favorite things where you can become an affiliate and earn a commission? Why do you think you need brands? Seriously ask yourself that question, and be honest with your answer. If you want to write for brands on your personal blog and get compensated for it, then it leads to 100% transparency every time you write about a brand, even when you tweet or share your links to social networks.
  • Why is the benefit to you of establishing a sponsored relationship? Do you need brands to help your blog get more readers or do you want to make a living from blogging? If you do, ask yourself, “What would Chris Brogan do?” That is always a great place to start, because Chris is all about complete transparency.

So I hope this at least gets a real discussion going and allows for more opinions and thoughts to be shared. As for me, I can say the following without hesitation: I have no issue with sponsored posts or campaigns if they are done authentically and with the right intentions. For me, promoting a new Spanish-language channel whose primetime weekly lineup is all about cops, criminals, and drug lords and saying that it is programming worth watching for US Latinos is wrong. Influential blogs need to know that many people are watching and reading them, and this is still a very small and connected community. I know many others feel the same way as I do, and if my mistake was sharing my opinions about what I find to be a misleading practice and not good for the overall representation of the US Latino market, then I will make that same mistake again.

I really hope that we begin to discuss what I feel is a big issue in the Latino blogosphere about sponsored campaigns. As leaders who have been there from the very beginning, promoting a brand that has done little (so far) to advance the portrayal of US Latinos in mainstream media just doesn’t cut it for me. That is not being divisive. It’s just expressing my opinion and wishing that we as a community are more united in our demands for more quality content from mainstream networks.

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It is July 1 and it’s time for another review of Latino-themed Facebook pages and their Facebook Level of Engagement (FLOE). Like we said last month:

Our intent was to offer a sampling of the thousands of Latino-themed Facebook pages out there. The list was no way near exhaustive, if you are a page that would like to be added to the list, just post your link below in the comments section and add it. Before we share the latest list, just a quick reminder that this is all about engagement. The goal is to ensure that you achieve the maximum results in the number of likes that you have on a consistent basis, since the more people are talking about you, the better your chances are at establishing real relationships and getting more interest in your online content and properties.

Let’s first check in with the Facebook page of George Takei, the KING OF FACEBOOK. His latest numbers as of this morning: 2,171,810 likes · 2,304,737 talking about this (that is a 106.1% FLOE, another outstanding month for the Facebook Page King).

Like we say every month, many pages have a lot of likes, but imagine if you are one of those pages and you can push your FLOE over 15%? 20%? 30%? These FLOE percentages are all based on real-time stats taken this morning, July 1. We also decided to make one master list, and encourage other brands and organizations to pass on their Facebook links to us so we can add you to the July list. Why are we doing this? Here are our reasons:

  1. We want to start curating a master list of Latino-themed Facebook pages.
  2. We want to see if all these pages can achieve a consistent FLOE of 15%. Once that happens, imagine the possibilities.
  3. Don’t just work to get the numbers, once you have the numbers, curate content that will have people talking about your page. With greater numbers, you have a greater chance of engaging people and having people sharing your content on Facebook organically.
  4. We decided to keep some of the bigger Latino celebrity pages since a few agencies asked us to do this. It is exciting to see that such pages has millions and millions of likes, but the fact remains: all those pages are under-performing in terms of engagement rates. Just look at George Takei’s page. He has 2 million likes and his engagement rate is off the charts. Celebrity pages just don’t get it. FOLLOW TAKEI’S MODEL!

Ok, here is the July list (numbers based on page checks on July 1, 2012 from 9am-11am EST; full disclosure: Latino Rebels is my organization.)  It is very important to note that Facebook can be fickle. For example, a page might all of a sudden have 10,000 people talking about it, but then it dips down to 6,000 again.

Nonetheless, we are just trying to capture a moment in the monthly life of a Facebook page. This is not a definitive data study, since they only way to capture that is to have pages actually submit the real hard admin data.

And like we said, Facebook is just one part of your strategy, it is not THE strategy. The key is always about your main content hub and how a place like Facebook can get you more engaged followers and loyalists.

A huge shout out to the Facebook page of SO MEXICAN, which had over 500,000 people talking about its page. And Pitbull’s page finally showed some increase in engagement with over 20 million fans.

July’s Sampling of Latino Facebook Pages and Their Facebook Level of Engagement (FLOE)

  1. Latino Rebels: 143% (16,210 likes · 23,179 talking about this)
  2. Fit Latina: 73.1% (841 likes · 615 talking about this)
  3. So Mexican: 56.2% (907,026 likes · 509,900 talking about this)
  4. Pocho.com: 35.1% (1,624 likes · 571 talking about this)
  5. Voto Latino: 32.2% (17,369 likes · 5,598 talking about this)
  6. VOXXI: 30.0% (1,516 likes · 456 talking about this)
  7. Being Latino: 26.1% (74,698 likes · 19,583 talking about this)
  8. Mamiverse: 25.7% (18,744 likes · 4,826 talking about this)
  9. NBC Latino: 22.3% (3,151 likes · 703 talking about this)
  10. Sofrito for Your Soul: 20.6% (8,084 likes · 1,669 talking about this)
  11. The Big Tino: 20.3% (72,371 likes · 14,733 talking about this)
  12. Gozamos: 19.2% (3,866 likes · 743 talking about this)
  13. SoLatina: 18.7% (59,220 likes · 11,105 talking about this)
  14. Remezcla: 17.4% (10,459 likes · 1,819 talking about this)
  15. El Diario NY: 15.5% (4,430 likes · 688 talking about this)
  16. Fox News Latino: 15.3% (63,068 likes · 9,620 talking about this)
  17. Despierta América: 11.7% (102,266 likes · 11,975 talking about this)
  18. Ford en español: 10.4% (1,542 likes · 161 talking about this)
  19. Primer impacto: 10% (187,400 likes · 18,741 talking about this)
  20. Pa’lante Latino: 9.7% (1,347 likes · 132 talking about this)
  21. Cuéntame: 9.5% (80,108 likes · 7,616 talking about this)
  22. Telemundo: 9.1% (298,590 likes · 27,048 talking about this)
  23. HuffPost Latino Voices: 8.7% (6,515 likes · 568 talking about this)
  24. Latina: 7.7% (65,506 likes · 5,053 talking about this)
  25. Disney World Latino: 8.1% (49,467 likes · 4,032 talking about this)
  26. National Council of La Raza: 7.8% (18,538 likes · 1,438 talking about this)
  27. Being Puerto Rican: 7.5% (19,029 likes · 1,435 talking about this)
  28. SpanglishBaby: 6.7% (5,175 likes · 347 talking about this)
  29. Mexican Word of the Day: 6.3% (1,308,727 likes · 82,767 talking about this)
  30. Latina List: 5.8% (2,908 likes · 169 talking about this)
  31. Pitbull: 5.7% (21,347,089 likes · 1,222,217 talking about this)
  32. Univision News: 5.7% (5,466 likes · 309 talking about this)
  33. American Latino Museum: 5.5% (118,758 likes · 6,488 talking about this)
  34. Los Pichy Boys: 5.5% (12,956 likes · 708 talking about this)
  35. National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts: 5.4% (1,368 likes · 74 talking about this)
  36. Cosmo for Latinas: 4.8% (6,543 likes · 314 talking about this)
  37. Vitera: 4.7% (4,508 likes · 215 talking about this)
  38. Mun2: 4.6% (197,707 likes · 9,031 talking about this)
  39. News Taco: 3.9% (4,160 likes · 164 talking about this)
  40. Immigrant Archive Project: 3.7% (11,842 likes · 441 talking about this)
  41. Calle 13: 3.3% (1,203,360 likes · 40,058 talking about this)
  42. Es el momento: 3.3% (11,297 likes · 375 talking about this)
  43. Think Mexican: 3.1% (4,732 likes · 148 talking about this)
  44. People en español: 2.7% (162,232 likes · 4,420 talking about this)
  45. Hispanicize: 2.7% (4,404 likes · 119 talking about this)
  46. Ask a Mexican: 2.5% (35,205 likes · 887 talking about this)
  47. Hispanically Speaking News: 2.5% (2,913 likes · 74 talking about this)
  48. Cristiano Ronaldo: 2.5% (46,139,838 likes · 1,175,161 talking about this)
  49. Somos Verizon Fios: 1% (34,378 likes · 338 talking about this)
  50. Selena Gómez: 1.4% (31,855,530 likes · 431,576 talking about this)
  51. La Cosmopolitana: 1% (1,250 likes · 22 talking about this)
  52. Shakira:  0.09% (52,251,465 likes · 468,098 talking about this)
  53. El Gordo y la Flaca: 0.08% (297,843 likes · 2,469 talking about this)
  54. Toyota Latino: 0.006% (73,980 likes · 463 talking about this)
  55. Latinos in Social Media: .002% (139,118 likes · 239 talking about this)

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