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For quite some time, marketers and advertisers have been paying particular attention to classe C, Brazil’s emerging middle class. This makes sense: the most recent numbers indicate that more than 105 million people in Brazil—55% of the population—are class C. In June 2011 the Fundação Getúlio Vargas, which produces lots of research about the country’s economy and society, reported that between May 2010 and May 2011, 3.6 million Brazilians had moved from classes D and E to Class C, making it the fastest-growing socioeconomic class. According to research firm Data Popular, by 2014 58% of Brazilians will be class C.
As class C has surged, it’s been studied, especially when it comes to media use. Below are 5 ways for marketers, advertisers and media professionals to reach class C.
For years, the perception was that class C was not online, that they couldn’t afford Internet service or weren’t tech-savvy enough. Wrong. According to Renato Meirelles, director of research firm Data Popular, 46% of class C Brazilians have Internet access.
In addition, research firm e-bit reported in 2011 that 52% of Brazilian online consumers were from class C. Looking forward, by 2015 class C will be responsible for a level of consumption that will be equivalent to classes A and B combined. Given this and the fact that this middle class currently has $1 trillion reales of purchasing power, it seems likely that many more people from class C will be online very soon.
Use the Power of Print
In stark contrast to the United States and Europe, print media are very strong in Brazil. Newspapers gained 3.5% in circulation in 2011 and were the #2 medium in ad spend. Magazines broke records in revenues in 2011 while gaining 5% in circulation. According to Pedro Silva, head of the Instituto Verificador de Circulação (IVC)—which tracks Brazil’s print media circulation and revenues—class C is directly responsible for the circulation gain for newspapers.
Put Pay TV into the Plan
Class C’s consumption has extended to pay TV. According to the head of the Associação Brasileira de TV por Assinatura (Brazilian Pay TV Association), 30% of pay TV’s subscriber base are from class C. Around 13 million households in Brazil have pay TV, which translates to around 39 million people because average household size in the country is 3.3. This means that advertisers can reach a potential class C audience of 11.7 million via pay TV.
Develop a C-Class Social Strategy
In fall 2011 Data Popular reported that nearly 60% of class C is on social media. Beyond being strong on Orkut, class C is also moving quickly into Facebook. In fact, a 2011 study from Grupo.Mobi and W/McCann reported that 56% of class C members accessed Orkut from their cell phones and 50% accessed Facebook. These percentages were higher than those of class B members accessing these social media sites from their cell phones.
This trend is not surprising when you consider the 97% penetration rate that social media have in Brazil. In fact, a December 2011 study from Experian Hitwise showed that social media sites in Brazil receive even more traffic than adult sites.
Target Class C with Mobile Marketing
A 2011 study from Kantar Wordpanel Brasil showed that class C members have 57 million cell phone lines, significantly more than classes AB, which have 39.5 million. In addition, 40% of class C members had 2 cellphone lines, compared to only 31% of class AB Brazilians with this amount. And while some have had the perception that class C mostly buys basic phones with little multimedia or Internet capabilities, a 2011 survey from Grupo.Mobi and W/McCann showed that 19% of class C members have a smartphone. For its part, the Kantar study showed even greater smartphone ownership among class C: it claimed that class C members owned 36.1 million smartphones in 2011, compared to 39 million smartphones owned by classes A and B.
Beyond smartphone ownership, “the class C users consume the most mobile content, games and videos,” says Marcio Chaer, Managing Director of Latin America for the Mobile Marketing Association.
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