We’ve all been there. Recording a WhatsApp voice note in the middle of a crowded street or listening to one on the Subte, con headphones, por supuesto (we’re not animals). Whether you’re sending GIFs to your co-workers, long paragraphs to your novia professing your love, or pictures of your dog to everyone you know, if you’re Argentine, there isn’t a chance you don’t use WhatsApp all-day, everyday. But don’t take our word for it. Turns out the numbers confirm what we all already know – Argentina is officially OBSESSED with the app.
This year, for the first time, WhatsApp has beaten Google for the top spot as the most influential brand in the country, a new report found. The international market research firm Ipsos conducted a year-long study on the popularity of brands in various regions of the world and concluded that Argentines, like before, just can’t let go of their digital addictions. Yet, 2018 was the first time Ipsos included WhatsApp in its survey, and the brand quickly raced to first place, besting Facebook, YouTube, and Google.
Brenda Lynch Wade, the director of public affairs for Ipsos Argentina, said it came as no surprise that the brands that digitally link people were the leaders. “They are already so present in our daily lives, even if it doesn’t seem like a brand, like WhatsApp,” she explained, according to the Buenos Aires Times. “There are people who don’t know it is a brand, and yet it’s a product that’s in the lives of consumers all the time.”
The study was conducted in 16 different countries, and looked at five different types of brands of the following categories: connectivity, innovation, trustworthiness, social responsibility, and visibility. Respondents in Argentina rated connectivity and innovation as the most important aspects of a brand, which may contribute to explaining why WhatsApp landed so high.
Wade noted that since Ipsos began conducting such surveys years ago, the trend of results has radically changed. Respondents seem to be moving away from the traditional brands of the 20th century, like off-line food and service providers, toward digital options.
The top 10 influential brands of Argentina for the year of 2018 were rated from 1 to 10 in the following order: WhatsApp, Google, YouTube, Facebook, Mercado Libre, Samsung, Visa, Netflix, Microsoft, and Coca-Cola. This is the first year that Netflix broke into the top 10. In 2013, the entertainment streaming service came in last in a list of top 100 brands in Argentina.