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31 Enero 2017

Colombia: The consumption in the Base of the Pyramid

In The Cocktail Analysis, we went to the streets to understand the impact that digital has had on the lowest SEL in the country, focusing on the digital uses the youngest generations do.

We wanted to understand this emerging phenomenon in detail in order to offer our clients not only a deeper analysis of the segment but also to accompany them in the search for new business opportunities and in the development of strategies more focused and adapted to this expanding segment in terms of volume and purchasing power. We focused on the youngest because they are the protagonists of this change, characterized by the incorporation of uses and digital consumption, since they are living in first person the incorporation of new uses and digital practices in the Base of the Pyramid.

There are hardly some public studies in Colombia on digital use and consumption at the Base of the Pyramid, since:

  • It is a very relevant segment of the total population in Colombia, growing both in terms of volume and purchasing power (the population defined as poor decreases and the population that is in a vulnerable condition increases).
  • According to the Inter-American Development Bank, SEL2 of the BoP in Colombia makes up 41% of Colombia’s total population.
  • Although in recent years some brands have begun to address them, compared to other profiles are still few studies made specifically on the Base of the Pyramid; and practically nonexistent public studies. 
  • In particular, an approach since the digital field is relevant since it is being the lever of approach to information and consumption opportunities that previously were not feasible for the low socioeconomic strata.
  • Young people are the protagonists in the incorporation of digital uses; they are also who will play to a greater extent of the available consumption of the Base of Pyramid.

We set ourselves as a general research objective, to deepen in the role that technology and digital has in a context of use and consumption of services/ products by the youth of the BoP, exploring different items (e-Commerce, services, ticketing, food, travel, etc…).

Some of the findings:

  • The approach, in terms of communication, should support informal business discourse and an affable/close tone. 
  • Contrast between advanced users and a lagged offer
  • There is a high valuation of companies of collection and returns
  • Smartphone Predominance: multi-category killer
  • The size of the screen: Main differential at the time of purchase of Smartphone. 
  • The e-commerce is in the background, little prominence
  • The wi-fi redefines the relationship with the space
  • Multi-use social networks, mainly Facebook
  • Certain digital services (ticketing-addresses) outside the reference universe. 
  • Relationship with weakened TV. 
  • There is an opportunity for consumption in local content

In the following link you can access to the complete report:


  • Desk Research on the state-of-the-art of studies focused on the Base of the Pyramid and sociodemographic and consumer data from these socioeconomic levels.
  • Field observation through ethnography in public spaces and commercial establishments related to the digital environment (sale of cell phones, top up of minutes and data, sale of devices)
  • Semi-structured interviews in situ in selected public spaces, where according to official instances (DANE), there are concentrations of housing from low socioeconomic strata (SEL2).