flag Brazil Brazil: Reaching the Consumers

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Consumer Profile

Consumer Profile
Brazil is a country of young people, as 62% of Brazilians are aged 29 or under. The median age is 33.5 years. The country has a population of approximately 212 million people, where 49.15% are men and 50.85% are women. The number of households in Brazil has been increasing. According to the latest data provided by the UN, 12% of households consist of one person, 47% have of two or three people, 32% four or five people, and 9% have six or more inhabitants. Good education is an important requisite for finding a good job in Brazil. However, only 49% of adults aged 25-64 have completed upper secondary education in the country. Of those who have a degree, 46% of them are men, and 52% are women. Brazil is sparsely populated and the majority of the population lives along the coast, particularly around São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Throughout the country, most people live near or in urban areas. In 2019, 87.4 % of the population of Brazil is urban. However, some areas of the country are essentially deserted, mainly in the Amazon region. The services sector employs almost 71,3% of the active workforce in 2020. While agriculture employs 9.12% of the country, industry sector employs 19.6% of the total active workforce.
Purchasing Power
In Brazil, GDP per capita reached USD 15,258 PPP in 2019, according to the latest data by the World Bank. The average monthly salary of a Brazilian is BRL 8,535 in July 2020. Brazil’s Private Consumption Expenditure was reported at USD 186.323 billion in Jun 2020. Income inequality is a big issue in Brazil, a country where the six richest men have the same wealth as poorest 50% of the population (which is around 100 million people), and where the richest 5% of the population have the same income as the remaining 95%, according to Oxfam latest figures. Furthermore, the country's Gini coefficient has been rising as poverty and inequality increase in the country (53.9 in 2018, World Bank). Moreover, according  to IBGE, women in Brazil earned 20.5% less than men on average in 2018 (latest data). In addition, according to the World Bank, the labor force participation rate is 80% for men aged 15 to 64 in 2020, while the participation rate is 61.1% for women, but the trend is upward. Different regions of the country have different standards of living, with the best ones in the southern areas of Brazil and the poorest living conditions in the north and northeast.
Consumer Behaviour
Brazil has one of the largest consumer market sizes, with an overall population of 212 million as of 2019. However, the country’s recent recession has influenced the way people manage their spending. Nowadays, Brazilians tend to save as much as they can when they go shopping. Economic conditions have resulted in 75% of Brazilians looking for ways to spend less. Additionally, even though consumers usually remain loyal to their favourite brands, they only do it if the price is right. Indeed, 19% of consumers shop around to find retailers selling a specific brand’s products at lower prices and 14% wait for sales. Brazilians tend to do product research and look for deals before making a purchase. To save money, Brazilian consumers often shop in popular discount chains. However, they still expect quality products. Furthermore, customers demand high-quality sales service and customer support. Online customer support service is highly useful in maintaining contact with customers, but customers expect a fast response when they contact companies via social media, as they mostly hope to have a reply in under one hour. Consumers have more access to information than ever before, and they will likely search for reliable information about brands and products to assist in the purchase decision. Furthermore, the reputation and popularity of the brand matter more than before to the average Brazilian consumer nowadays. People tend to spend their money on experiences as much as they spend on products. Additionally, Brazilians spend a significant amount on electronics and beauty products, and the country is one of the biggest markets for beauty products in the world. According to the FGV (Fundaçao Getulio Vargas), the consumer confidence index reached 83.4 in September 2020.

Brazil has the largest and most developed e-commerce market in Latin America, ranking 10th in the world for most e-commerce sales. In 2019, the population spent $16.8 billion on products sold online. Brazilian consumers are significantly influenced by social media comments, so if there is a significant number of negative reviews about a product on social media, they will consider not making the purchase. E-commerce has been growing steadily, and Brazilian consumers have been making purchases online more often than they do in-store. Rather than paying outright, Brazilians have a strong preference to pay for a purchase in instalments. That payment option strengthens consumers’ purchasing power, and consequently boosts the average transaction value per customer. Three quarters of consumers commonly make payments in instalments, in an average of six payments per purchase, and one third of consumers will not make a purchase if the shop does not offer the option to pay in instalments.

The overall environmental awareness of the Brazilian consumers has improved over the recent years. Among the top environmentally friendly attitudes among consumers are exchanging or donating products that they no longer use, avoiding printing documents, and turning off lights that are not being used. Brazil is home to many international collaborative platforms and use of Uber and Airbnb is very common.
 

Household Consumption Expenditure

Sector Percentage
Transport 23.6%
Food and beverages 23.0%
Health 8.3%
Housing 6.2%
Clothing and footwear 6.1%
Energy 4.9%
Education 3.4%
ICT 3.1%
Personal care 1.9%
Water utility 1.4%
Consumer Recourse to Credit
Cash is still the preferred payment method among Brazilian consumers, but the use of credit has been growing rapidly in the country - especially among the middle class. Most shops offer consumers the option to pay for their purchase in instalments spread over a period of time, which is usually done without charging interest. Among consumers, the value of the purchase is the main factor that determines whether to use credit. A concentrated banking sector and a history of rampant inflation and defaults have long pushed up borrowing costs in Brazil, where interest rates average more than 300% for unpaid credit card bills. According to the Brazilian National Consumer Indebtedness Survey, as of January 2017 over half (55.6%) of the Brazilian households had some type of debt. Credit card debt is by far the main type of debt in the country, with 77.3% of households having credit card debt, followed by car leases (14%) and mortgages (10%). Even though demand for credit is still weak, it should see a significant change with an eventual drop in interest rates. Additionally, Brazil has 55 million unbanked adults and more than 20 million people without access to any banking service whatsoever.
Growing Sectors
Agribusiness, automotive industry, renewable energy, iron and steel, environmental solutions, oil and gas, textiles, and healthcare.
Consumers Associations
Instituto Brasileiro de Defesa do Consumidor , Brazilian Institute for the Defence of the Consumer
Associação Brasileira de Defesa do Consumidor , Brazilian Association of Consumer Protection
Fundação de Proteção e Defesa do Consumidor , Consumer Protection and Defense Foundation
 

Population in Figures

Total Population:
212,559,409
Urban Population:
87.1%
Rural Population:
12.9%
Density of Population:
25 Inhab./km²
Men (in %)
49.3%
Women (in %)
50.9%
Natural increase:
0.71%
Medium Age:
27.0
Ethnic Origins:
According to the IBGE (Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics), less than 48% of the Brazilian population is of European origin. About 43% of the population is of mixed ethnic origin, about 8% is of African origin and less than 2% have other ethnic origins, including Indigenous, Arab and Japanese.
 

Population of main metropolitan areas

City Population
Sao Paulo 12,214,500
Rio de Janeiro 6,747,900
Brasília 2,950,600
Salvador 2,885,900
Fortaleza 2,686,600
Belo Horizonte 2,521,600
Manaus 2,208,400
Curitiba 1,948,700
Recife 1,653,500
Goiânia 1,530,300
Porto Alegre 1,488,300
Belém 1,486,900

Source: Citypopulation.de, Latest available data - Latest available data.

 

Age of the Population

Life Expectancy in Years
Men:
72.2
Women:
79.6

Source: World Bank, last available data., 2009 - Latest available data.

 
Distribution of the Population By Age Bracket in %
Under 5:
7.8%
6 to 14:
17.7%
16 to 24:
17.3%
25 to 69:
52.7%
Over 70:
4.5%
Over 80:
1.5%

Source: United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division, Prospects 2010 - Latest available data.

 

Household Composition

Average Age of the Head of the Household 29.5 Years
Total Number of Households (in million) 54.6
Average Size of the Households 3.5 Persons
Percent of Households of 1 Person 11.1%
Percent of Households of 2 Persons 20.5%
Percent of Households of 3 or 4 Persons 47.0%
Percent of Households of 5 Persons and More 20.5%

Source: PNAD 1996, 1996; National statistics institute (IBGE), 2006 - Latest available data.

 

Consumption Expenditure

Purchasing Power Parity 2019202020212022 (e)2023 (e)
Purchasing Power Parity (Local Currency Unit per USD) 2.282.362.532.622.66

Source: IMF – World Economic Outlook Database, Latest Available Data

Definition: Purchasing Power Parity is the Number of Units of a Country's Currency Required to Buy the Same Amounts of Goods and Services in the Domestic Market as USD Would Buy in the United States.

Note: (e) Estimated Data

 
Household Final Consumption Expenditure 201820192020
Household Final Consumption Expenditure
(Million USD, Constant Price 2000)
1,157,2221,182,5811,118,078
Household Final Consumption Expenditure
(Annual Growth, %)
2.42.2-5.5
Household Final Consumption Expenditure per Capita
(USD, Constant Price 2000)
5,5255,6035,260

Source: World Bank, Latest Available Data

 
Consumption Expenditure By Product Category as % of Total Expenditure 2015
Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels 24.2%
Food and non-alcoholic beverages 17.7%
Miscellaneous goods and services 9.2%
Furnishings, household equipment and routine maintenance of the house 9.2%
Transport 8.9%
Health 7.2%
Restaurants and hotels 6.1%
Clothing and footwear 6.0%
Communication 5.1%
Education 2.8%
Alcoholic beverages, tobacco and narcotics 2.6%
Recreation and culture 0.9%

Source: UN Data, Latest available data

 
Information Technology and Communication Equipment, per 100 Inhabitants 2012
Telephone Subscribers 123.2
Main Telephone Lines 22.3
Cellular mobile subscribers 123.2
Internet Users 49.8
PCs 16.1

Source: International Telecommunication Union, Latest available data

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Marketing opportunities

 

Media in Which to Advertise

Television
It is possible to reach the entire Brazilian population through the country's hundreds of TV channels. Everyone watches television, especially when the telenovelas are on in prime time and during sports events that the country takes part in. Pay TV accounted for over 72% of ad spending in Brasil during 2015, according to Media Compass. The most watched free TV station from January to August 2017 was Globo (4.85 million viewers) followed by Record TV (1.91 million viewers) (Statista).

Main Televisions
Grupo Bandeirantes de Comunicação
Central Nacional de Televisão (CNT)
Rede Globo
Rede Record
Sistema Brasileiro de Televisao (SBT)
Fundacao Padre Anchieta
RedeTV!
Press
Much read by the more well-off and more educated people, company managers and civil servants. The main dailies are published regionally but read all over the country. PwC projets digital newspapers to sell 2.2 million copies in 2020 (compared to 0.3 million in 2015). "O Globo" is the second most sold paid newspaper in Brazil (Statista).

Main Newspapers
Folha de São Paulo
O Globo
Super Notícia
Correio Braziliense
Zero Hora
Estado de Minas
Valor Econômico
2017 average paid circulation of Brazilian newspaper
Mail
Mail advertising has been largely displaced by e-commerce.
In Transportation Venues
Adverts on means of transport are common, but not on public transport. The city of São Paulo has even prohibited any advertising posters anywhere in the urban area. Given the very low cost of labor, sandwich men or touts are used a lot by small companies.

Market Leaders:
Samba Digital
Radio
Television has widely replaced radio as a means of daily entertainment. However, listening ratings are still high, especially in rural areas, small shops or in transportation. Brazil has thousands of radio stations. Most transmitters are local or regional. Digital radio ratings by period and region can be found here.

Main Radios
Radio Bandeirantes
Radio Globo / CBN
Radio Eldorado
Empresa Brasil de Comunicação (government-owned)
Web
E-commerce is in full expansion. The Brazilian market leads Latin America with 20 million regular Internet users. Consequently, online advertising is comparable to OECD countries and seeks to target Internet users more subtly through email, hyperlinks, popups, etc. Facebook is present and has a dominant position in the Brazilian market. The proliferation of smartphones has also increased internet retailing.
139 million Brazilians had access to Internet in 2016 according to Internetlivestats.com. Brazilians also favor use of social media such as Facebook.


Market Leaders:
Buscapé
Preçomania
Que Barato
Main Advertising Agencies
Search for members of the Professional Association of Brazilian Advertising Agencies
 

Main Principles of Advertising Regulations

Beverages/Alcohol
Advertising concerning alcoholic beverages must not incite people to drink nor behave irresponsibly. They must target people over 25 and not be broadcast on television and radio except between 9.30 pm and 6 am. On billboards and in events sponsored by firms, only the name of the brand and the representation of the product are authorized. Any advert must be accompanied by an official message advising against excessive drinking.
Alcohol advertisement is regulated by Federal Law No. 9,294 since 1996.
Cigarettes
Must not be aimed at people under 25, associated with a source of pleasure, relaxation or well-being nor promote excessive consumption. Tobacco advertising and promotion is prohibited except when displaying products at the point of sale. No official sports personality may appear in adverts.
Alcohol advertisement is regulated by Federal Law No. 9,294 and regulated by CONAR since 1996. All relevant tobacco ad regulations can be found here.
Pharmaceuticals/Drugs
Advertising for over the counter medicines must not use excessive scientific jargon, must not call on non scientific but strictly approved tests, nor encourage the systematic use of the medicine or use which is foreign to its purpose. All pharmaceutical products must be registered with the National Sanitary Surveillance Agency (ANVISA) under Federal Law No. 9782 of 1999.
Resolution No. 96 makes no statement on using email or mail orders to buy or sell drugs, provided all other requirements are met.
Other Rules
Advertising must not overstep the principles of respect, decency, honesty and integrity of people's private life, must not lead to violence, nor be based on fears, beliefs or superstitions. Comparative advertising is allowed but with a strict respect for objectivity.
Use of Foreign Languages in Advertisement
Tolerated to the extent it is necessary to put over the advertising message. Must be carried out in Portuguese and in a Brazilian socio-cultural context. Imported products must have a Portuguese translation.
Organizations Regulating Advertising
National Council for Advertising Self-Regulation (non-binding)
Executive Council for Standard-Rules - CENP (non-binding)

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Latest Update: May 2022