Hootsuite’s yearly digital report about Trinidad & Tobago reveals a lot about the local consumer market
We Are Social and Hootsuite release a yearly Digital Report for the world and for each country. The report has a plethora of digital analytics aimed at informing marketers about digital trends and digital consumer behaviour. 2021’s report has been much-anticipated especially due to the changing behaviours of consumers in the digital space in Trinidad and Tobago due to COVID-19 and lockdowns in 2020.
Here are some statistics for local marketers should note :
Where are consumers spending their time online?
While numbers of active users have changed over the last year, some factors have remained the same. For example, the top two websites with the most traffic are still Google and Youtube. Yahoo, Bing and Facebook follow after, in that order. These statistics are particularly important to marketers who have been thinking about investing in Google ads. Whether it is Search Ads or Display Ads (ads shown on Google affiliate websites and Youtube), the recurring statistics show that these are the two most frequented websites yearly in Trinidad and Tobago. This proves that they are worth investing in for local companies designing their digital marketing plan.
What are the most frequented social media platforms in Trinidad & Tobago?
With many locals staying home during the lockdown orders and turning to online solutions and social media for goods, services and entertainment, there was an increase in active social media users. The report states:
● Active Social Media Users 2020: 860,000
● Active Social Media Users 2021: 940,000
That significant increase in active social media users can be seen throughout most platforms, however, the increase is most predominant on Facebook. Facebook continues to be the platform with the most active users on the island.
In fact, the current number of active users (770,000 users) is an 80,000 user increase since the 2020 report. Facebook remains the best platform to reach the majority of the population as its “potential advertising audience” in comparison to the total population is 66.4%. For reference, Twitter in Trinidad and Tobago has a 6.8% potential advertising audience to the population.
While Facebook continues to be popular among locals for general social media use, it is also the digital space where many locals find businesses for various goods and services, especially, as many local businesses don’t have websites and use their Facebook pages like a landing page for customers.
One of the most important statistics from this report that marketers should pay attention to is:
● The percentage of Facebook users accessing via mobile phones is 80.2% of their users, while Laptop/Desktop Only is 1.4%.
● Accessing Facebook via both mediums is 18.4%
This extreme difference between mobile use and desktop use is particularly important to note for companies that are boosting posts. To ensure as narrow and as accurate a target audience as possible, marketers should tick off “Mobile Use” under behaviours in the “Custom Audience” tab when boosting. This combined with the other behaviours and likes of their desired target audience is just another measure to ensure that the ad reaches the desired target audience.
Instagram comes in second after Facebook for most users locally with 500,000 active users. They also report a 43.1% rate of their potential advertising audience compared to the total population. Instagram got a significant increase in users, 2019 figures report that the number of active users on the platform was around 410,000.
Instagram is known to have a younger demographic than Facebook, so while it comes in second for most users on the island it is still the predominant platform to reach a younger demographic. In their 2019 report, Napoleon Cat found, “People aged 25 to 34 were the largest user group (151 000)” on the platform in the country.
LinkedIn goes up while Twitter goes down
Similar to other professional or job application platforms LinkedIn saw a slight increase in local users, the report found that the:
● Potential Audience that Linkedin reports can be reached on adverts on LinkedIn: 410,000 (2020 figure is 390,000)
This is likely due to more people actively looking for jobs due to job losses during COVID-19.
Twitter on the other hand saw a significant decrease in users. In the 2020 report, it stated that the potential audience that Twitter reports can be reached on adverts on the platform was 138.5 thousand, however, in 2021 that number was reduced to 73.4 thousand users.
Twitter has been the least popular platform for local companies to advertise on due to a relatively lower number of active local users and this latest statistic seems to confirm this. An interesting stat that has come out of the dataset, however, shows that unlike all the other platforms included in the report Twitter has more male users than female (Female - 31% & Male - 69%)
E-Commerce has been a huge topic of discussion amongst local businesses especially when lockdowns were stricter in the early part of 2020, however, there has been little to no increase in statistics related to e-commerce in the country. One of the biggest challenges seems to be credit card use in the country and the lack of debit card online payment solutions on the island. Companies have found loopholes around this through bank transfer payments. However, despite more local activity online there is still little to no change in the statistics related to e-commerce:
Percentage of the population aged 15+:
- that has an account with a financial institution: 80.8%
- has a credit card: 16.0% (the same figure as the 2020 report)
- that makes online purchases and/or pays bills online: 20.1% (00.1% increase from 2020)
What does this all mean?
Similar to trends around the world, active users have increased online and on social media platforms. This is great news for digital marketers as the more people that are online the better their chance is of reaching more potential customers. What is particularly interesting about this report is the number of users on various platforms. Google (including Youtube), Facebook & Instagram are still the prominent social media platforms to advertise on.
Despite the efforts to push shopping online, it seems the lack of robust online payment solutions has left the market stagnant. However, local companies have found their ways around the issue particularly through solutions like WiPay and online bank transfers from businesses to consumers, especially on social media.
If you want to learn more about the digital report, click here.
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