“The future lies with these companies who see the poor as their customers.” – C. K. Prahalad
India is a country of diverse cultures, languages and rituals. In these circumstances it has grow to be a challenge for manufacturers to differentiate their offerings according to the Indian industry. With about 70% of Indian population residing in rural regions the want of the hour for the marketers is penetrating this market place.
Driven by green revolution, rural population’s purchasing power has grown tremendously above the years. Accordingly rural demand for industrial and urban related goods is also increasing. In this context, a special marketing and advertising method, namely, rural advertising and marketing has emerged. But often, rural marketing is baffled with agricultural marketing. Although latter denotes advertising and marketing of make of the rural regions to the urban customers or industrial buyers, rural advertising and marketing entails delivering manufactured or processed inputs or companies to rural producers or shoppers.
What tends to make ‘Rural Markets’ desirable?
Significance of rural industry can be substantiated by following attributes:
Population 742 million
Estimated annual size of the rural market –
.5bn really worth FMCG merchandise sold in rural India in 2009
of two million BSNL mobile connections, 50% are in small towns / villages.
MNC’s like Coca-Cola have attempted to customize their providing by introducing “chota-coke” costing five rupees. Ironically although buying energy in rural India is increasing but associated infrastructure, like water & electrical power has not kept pace with that. To overcome this phenomenon, washing machine manufacturers have introduced washing machines which will maintain functioning even if there is no facility of operating water even though it is one more story that some of these machines had been used to churn curd and put together buttermilk.
Getting behavior of the rural customer is subservient to varied factors and is diverse from urban consumers in several techniques. Firstly majority of rural buyers remain in a joint family and most of the purchase choices are taken by elders. Secondly lack of information of item usage by semi literate population hinders market penetration, like Lux soap getting employed in rural places for washing hair. Thirdly and the greatest challenge in rural markets, other than resources and financial situation, is the standard mindset to acquire points which are according to their cultural setup. Fourthly, getting a closely knit neighborhood, viewpoint-leadership plays a very important function in acquire decisions in rural places, producing publicity through advertisement almost redundant. Sarpanch is one particular such viewpoint leader who can influence rural consumer’s acquire decision. Notion Telecom Business has employed Abhishek Bacchan in one particular of the ads shown as a sarpanch just to have a constructive appeal amongst the rural consumers.
Techniques for Enhancing Rural Marketing and advertising
Considering the environment in which Indian rural market operates and other related problems, need of the hour is to evolve a lot more powerful methods for rural marketing which would be in sync with rural physique. The methods discussed right here even though not universally applicable depend upon item characteristics, the targeted segment of the rural market, the option of the rural location and its economic condition.
Some of the typical characteristics which influence the rural market place segmentation are land holding pattern, irrigation facilities, progressiveness of farmers, cropping pattern mix of enterprise, education levels, proximity to cities/towns, sociological components, occupation categories. Small and marginal farmers, agricultural labourers and artisans form the biggest segment in rural industry (about two/3rd) in which as rich farmers constitute about 1 third of rural market
1 New product designs
A close observation of rural household items indicates the importance of redesigning or modifying items consumed by rural population. The manufacturing and advertising companies can assume in terms of new item designs like modest packs (e.g. sachets) specially meant for rural regions maintaining their lifestyles in view.
2. Sturdy products
Sturdiness of a item is an essential factor for rural consumers. The item meant for rural regions should be sturdy enough to stand rough dealing with and storage. Nokia 1100 has positioned itself in the related manner.
three. Brand name
The rural shoppers becoming worth for income buyers are more concerned with the utility of the goods. Getting mainly semi literate, a brand name and/or logo which can be effortlessly remembered is really important for rural shoppers
Pricing strategies are extremely much linked to product strategies. Some of these methods are mentioned right here.
1. Low cost/low-cost merchandise
Pricing tactic for rural market place will largely rely upon scope for reducing price of the product to suit the rural incomes and at the very same time not compromising with utility and sturdiness of the product.
This is a common technique currently being adopted extensively by a lot of manufacturing and advertising and marketing firms. Cost point can be kept low by little unit packing.
2. Prevent sophisticated packing
Adopting more affordable but durable & aesthetic packaging can bring down the expense, as it is presently currently being carried out in the situation of biscuits. Some innovation in packaging technological innovation is really needed for rural markets.
three. Refill packs/reusable packaging
Such measures have a important impact on the rural market place as it helps in decreasing value. Packaging material utilised need to preferably lend itself for reuse. An ideal example in this direction can be the packing of fertilizers. Now firms have began packing fertilizers in LDPE or HDPE sacks, which are not only tamper proof but also reusable for host of domestic chores.
4. Application of worth engineering
This is a strategy which can be tried to evolve cheaper products by substituting the pricey raw materials with the less expensive one particular, with out sacrificing the top quality or functional efficiency of the item, for illustration in meals market, ‘soya protein is being used instead of milk protein. Milk protein is high-priced although soya protein is cheaper but the nutrition worth is same. This method yields itself for application in several engineering or product created regions so that the cost can be kept at an affordable level.
Most companies and advertising firms have distribution arrangement for village with a population of at least 5000 people. Even though it is -crucial to formulate particular techniques for distribution in rural areas, the characteristics of the product, its shelf life have to be kept in mind. Distribution methods that are particularly intended for rural regions are: through co-operative societies, public distribution system, multi-goal distribution centers, distribution up to feeder markets/mandi towns shanties/hat/jathras/melas, agricultural input dealers and so on.
Mass media is a potent medium of communication. It could be television, cinema, print media, and radio. Other means of mass media obtainable are hoardings/wall paintings, shanties/hats/melas, non-price tag competitors, unique campaigns etc. Apart from these, other mass media like hand bills and booklets, posters, stickers, banners of the schemes and so on.
The ‘Go Rural’ mantra is the require of the hour for most of the organizations to survive for a longer time in the competitive marketplace scenario. For decades, MNCs have sold modified merchandise in India, a process widely acknowledged as globalization. This method worked reasonably nicely with the far more affluent urban buyers whose behavior is somewhat comparable to Western consumers. With increasing rural acquiring power and the 3 times larger population than urban, firms will want to develop acceptable items for this industry. The globalization or minor modification will not work as rural buyers are really distinct.
Rural marketing and advertising is an evolving concept, and as a part of any economy has massive tap able potential. Marketers have lengthy realized this chance. Improvement in infrastructure and attain, promise a vibrant long term for these intending to go rural.
With revenue ranges rising rural shoppers are keen on branded goods these days, so the marketplace size for such items and services appears to have burgeoned. The rural population has shown a trend of wanting to move into a state of gradual urbanization in terms of exposure, habits, lifestyles and lastly, consumption patterns of goods and companies.
By 2012 it is expected that every single village will be linked by an all weather road, each and every village will have web connectivity, and nearly every single house will have electrical power and possess a mobile cellphone. This substantial improvement in rural infrastructure coupled with agriculture reforms currently below way we can count on rural markets to reach inflexion point. This will lead to an explosion in demand the way it occurred in the urban markets in the mid 90s as a result of effortless buyer finance, a boom in the IT sector and steep improve in corporate salaries. Firms are not anticipating this boom and several will be taken by surprise when it occurs.
This post is extracted from dissertation conducted by Ms Sonali Saxena functioning as a Lecturer at NSB-NIILM School of Organization. NSB-NIILM isamongst the finest organization schools forMBA Delhiand NCR.