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Consumer Profile

Consumer Profile

 In 2022, the population of Argentina is estimated at 46.2 million inhabitants, with 49.1% of males and 50.9% females (INDEC). The median age in Argentina is 32, with 21% aged between 0 and 12, 18.5% between 13 and 24 years, 49% between 25 and 64, and 11.6% 65 or older (Data Reportal). Most households consist of two or three people, with one-person households representing 18% of all households, while two or three people households account for 42% of them, 29% of them have four or five people, and 11% have six or more inhabitants (INDEC, latest census data). With a literacy rate of 99%, the same rate of children enrolled in primary education, Argentina has high education levels. Additionally, 90% of those with primary education degrees go on to enroll in secondary education. However, only about 36% of Argentines aged 25-64 years old completed a tertiary degree in 2020 (OECD). More women (45%) than men (34%) attain a tertiary degree in the country (OECD, 2020). More than a fifth of women earned a bachelor’s degree, while only 15% of men did so. Argentina's population is mainly urban, as 92.3% of Argentines live in cities, with the 10 largest metropolitan areas accounting for nearly half of the population (Data Reportal, 2022). One-third of the population lives in Buenos Aires alone, and pockets of agglomeration occur mainly throughout the northern and central parts of the country.

Purchasing Power

GDP per capita has been fluctuating for years and has been declining since 2017. In 2020, it amounted to USD 20,770 PPP (World Bank), and the average yearly salary was estimated at ARS 158,000 in 2022 (INDEC). The concentration of wealth is very high in Argentina, as the country’s richest 10% control more wealth than the poorest 60% of the population. Furthermore, Gini index coefficient in Argentina was reported at 42.3 in 2020 (World Bank, latest data available). Additionally, the wage gap between men and women reached 25% in 2021 (Statista). However, it is possible that the wage gap is much larger than that, given that salaries for domestic work are not taken into account, and 14.2% of women in the country work in domestic services (Argentina Ministry of Labor, 2021). Out of all registered workers in the country, 43.9% are women and 56.1% are men (Argentina Ministry of Labor, 2021). Additionally, 78% of the population works in the services sector, 22% in industry, and 0.1% in agriculture (World Bank, latest data avalable). The highest wages in the country are in Buenos Aires, followed by Córdoba, then Corrientes.

Consumer Behaviour

Consumption preferences in Argentina tend to be closer to those of European countries than those of its Latin American neighbours. Given that the country went through a few crises over the past two decades, Argentine consumers have become quite frugal and consumption shifted towards value for money. Argentinian consumers tend to be rational and conservative with their money, buying only what is strictly necessary, prioritising price, not wasting, walking instead of driving, and acquiring new brands when cheaper. As a result, purchasing tends to orient itself around sub-brands and special offers, and household spending has decreased. Consumers have also become more selective and more reticent with regard to new products. Moreover, Argentine consumers tend to favour national rather than imported products, especially as the latter can be up to three times more expensive. According to Nielsen, since the pandemic consumers have changed their spending habits to save on household expenses, have cut down on takeaway meals and alcohol, and have switched to cheaper brands when shopping for groceries. In the food sector in particular, consumers tend to buy whatever is cheapest and are not loyal to brands. They also search for the best prices and special deals before buying a product, even if that means going to several different shops in one day. However, they tend to choose healthy but flavoursome products that are practical and easy to prepare, while looking for a bargain at the same time. They are also not loyal to specific retail chains, and are constantly looking for better service, less time waiting at the till and an overall better shopping experience, wherever that may be. Therefore, shops are constantly battling each other to attract consumers, which forces retail chains to invest in mass media advertisement, announcing discounts, great deals and special offers. On the other hand, wealthier consumers accept the higher prices of major brand names, because they perceive these brands to guarantee safer products and higher quality. Furthermore, younger consumers are more brand conscious than older consumers, and, even though price is still a concern, they usually do not mind paying more for a brand-name product. Even though on-line shopping has been growing in the country - especially among the younger generations - consumers still prefer to do their shopping in person. When shopping on-line, after sales service and delivery play a considerable role in purchasing decisions among the majority of Argentines. The household appliances sector is particularly interesting, as there is an overall preference to repair, rather than replace, older goods, so there is a flourishing market for household appliance spare parts in the country. Consumers are highly attracted to collaborative platforms such as Uber in Argentina. Nevertheless, except Mendoza province, use of such platforms are considered illegal, pushing consumers to use public transportation or licensed taxis.

 

Household Consumption Expenditure

Sector Percentage
Food and beverage 34.0%
Clothes and shoes 7.2%
Housing 12.8%
Equipment 6.8%
Health care 8.6%
Transport and communication 13.9%
Travel and culture 8.0%
Education 3.7%
Miscellaneous goods and services 5.0%

Source: Retail and consumer trends - Argentina.

Consumer Recourse to Credit

Consumers avoid resorting to credit and tend to see it as a last resort when covering unexpected expenses or making ends meet when facing a temporary income shortfall. Given the instability of the peso, Argentinians usually do not purchase their own home. When they do so, they often pay for their homes in cash upfront, and most of the time they do it in dollars. As a result, mortgage loans are practically non-existent. However, the government strongly encouraged the granting of mortgage loans to be paid in 20 or 30 years. Therefore, there has been an increase in mortgages in the country over the past two years, albeit little. On the other hand, car loans are one of the most common forms of credit in Argentina, and they have been growing lately. Additionally, most hypermarkets offer consumer credit on their products, so purchases paid over monthly instalments are increasingly popular all over the country.

Growing Sectors
Banking, insurance, real estate, transport, communication, tourism, agriculture, infrastructure, healthcare, agriculture, information technology, energy, creative industries, food processing, mining, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals.
Consumers Associations
Consumidores Argentinos
 

Population in Figures

Total Population:
45,376,763
Urban Population:
92.1%
Rural Population:
7.9%
Density of Population:
17 Inhab./km²
Men (in %)
48.9%
Women (in %)
51.2%
Natural increase:
0.97%
Medium Age:
29.0
Ethnic Origins:
Approximately 97% of the population has European origins (mostly Spanish and Italian). The remainder of the population is comprised of people of indigenous, african and/or mixed ethnic origins (The National Institute of Statistics and Censuses).
 

Population of main agglomerations

City Population
Buenos Aires 15,172,700
Cordoba 1,612,100
Rosario 1,339,500
Mendoza 1,053,500
Tucuman 902,200
La Plata 852,800
Salta 644,400
Mar del Plata 626,300
Santa Fe 540,200
San Juan 512,000

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

 

Age of the Population

Life Expectancy in Years
Men:
73.2
Women:
80.0

Source: World Bank (most recent data), 2009 - Latest available data.

 
Distribution of the Population By Age Bracket in %
Under 5:
8.4%
6 to 14:
16.5%
16 to 24:
16.6%
25 to 69:
51.2%
Over 70:
7.4%
Over 80:
2.6%

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

 

Household Composition

Total Number of Households (in million) 10.1
Average Size of the Households 3.8 Persons
Percent of Households of 1 Person 0.2%
Percent of Households of 2 Persons 20.0%
Percent of Households of 3 or 4 Persons 37.0%
Percent of Households of 5 Persons and More 28.0%
 

Consumption Expenditure

Purchasing Power Parity 202020212022 (e)2023 (e)2024 (e)
Purchasing Power Parity (Local Currency Unit per USD) 29.1742.7267.72115.38169.66

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)
396,070369,976321,591
Household Final Consumption Expenditure
(Annual Growth, %)
-2.2-6.6-13.1
Household Final Consumption Expenditure per Capita
(USD, Constant Price 2000)
8,9028,2337,087

Source: World Bank, Latest Available Data

 
Consumption Expenditure By Product Category as % of Total Expenditure
Food and drink 34.0%
Clothes and shoes 7.2%
Housing 12.8%
Equipment 6.8%
Medical care 8.6%
Transport and communication 13.9%
Travel and culture 8.0%
Education 3.7%
Miscellaneous goods and services 5.0%
 
Information Technology and Communication Equipment, per 100 Inhabitants 2012
Telephone Subscribers 134.9
Main Telephone Lines 24.3
Cellular mobile subscribers 134.9
Internet Users 55.8
PCs 8.4

Source: International Telecommunication Union, Latest available data

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Marketing opportunities

 

Media in Which to Advertise

Television
TV advertising has enormous influence on the consumer behavior of Argentinians since it is the most important medium. During their programs, presenters sing the praises of brands and products; commercials are shown at certain times during all types of broadcasts. 200 cable companies make TV advertising a strong choice. Open TV remains the favored choice by publishers, but it faces strong competition from digital outlets. Public broadcasting plays a small role in Argentinian life.

Argentinians spend an average of 174 minutes (2h 54 min) watching TV in 2016, a 9 minute drop compared to 2013 (Statista). Netflix's "Stranger Things" was also watched by 6.11 million viewers in Argentina, becoming the most in-demand digital TV show and highlighting growth potential in digital viewership and ad opportunities (Statista).


Main Televisions
Telearte SA
Multimedios América
Prime Argentina S.A.
Press
Argentina has more than 150 daily newspapers. During weekends, newspapers are full of leaflets and full-page adverts for the different big brands. Limited time offers are not used, so stores offer permanent special offers on all sorts of goods throughout the year. Newspaper advertising spending in Argentina (2015-2021 projection) can be found here, including print and digital ad spending. Detailed information on each newspaper can also be found here.

Main Newspapers
La Nacion
Grupo Clarin
Infobae
Perfil
Ambito Financiero
Buenos Aires Económico
El Cronista
La Razón
Diario Popular
Página 12
La Prensa
Buenos Aires Herald
Olé
Mail
Mailshots are still used in an amateur fashion and with little return. Postage is expensive, so people get leaflets directly in the street and never by post.
In Transportation Venues
From billboards in the streets, on bus shelters, in metro or railway stations, advertising is increasingly placed on transportation itself (private cars, buses, taxis, airplanes). Buenos Aires is saturated with billboards.

Market Leaders:
Punto 6
Dstyle
Radio
Radio advertising makes it possible to reach 21 million weekly listeners in Argentina through hundreds of commercial radio stations. Ads are broadcast mostly on local radio stations to promotes nearby stores. Argentina has 170 AM stations and 2000 FM stations, as well as 12 million radio devices in use.

Main Radios
AM 570
Radio Nacional
Radio Mitre
Cadena 3
Radio Continental
Radio Rivadavia
Web
According to Internet Live Stats, in 2016 30,359,855 Argentinians had access to Internet (69.2% penetration).
Advertising appears directly on websites; advertising by e-mail is growing but tends to get lost in the mass of spam received.
M-marketing (advertising by mobile phone) remains limited. Telemarketing has grown, but is mostly considered a home intrusion instead of a service.


Market Leaders:
Café Imagen
Zumocreativo
Transformma
Remolino
Main Advertising Agencies
Saatchi & Saatchi
Havas Worldwide
Havas Media
BridgerConway
Argentine Association of Advertising Agencies (AAAP)
McCann
 

Main Principles of Advertising Regulations

Beverages/Alcohol
Advertising concerning alcoholic beverages is not prohibited but the Government has recently deepened restrictions on it. An implementing decree was issued in 2009 for the "Alcohol Act", deepening restrictions on alcohol beverage advertising and consumption and obliging social security services to treat the social consequences of its consumption.
Cigarettes
Advertising prohibited on the public highway according to article 13 of law 1799. The 2011 National Anti-Tobacco Law forces risk concern advertisement to appear in ads and cigarette packages. Furthermore, it prohibits advertisement of any cigarette brand in mass media.
Pharmaceuticals/Drugs
Law 16463/64 states only over-the-counter medicines can be advertised. ANMAT Provision 6516/2015 requires all drug ads - be they over-the-counter or prescribed by doctors - be submitted online.
Use of Foreign Languages in Advertisement
Not prohibited.
Organizations Regulating Advertising
In Argentina, self-regulation in advertising is a very efficient manner to solve disputes.

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Latest Update: November 2022