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36857648 Rural Marketing

36857648 Rural Marketing

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Published by Sagar Pawar

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Published by: Sagar Pawar on Sep 09, 2010
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India is a vast country having an area of 3.3million sq.km. Ithas 6,38,365 villages, 4,500 regulated markets 22,000 primary rural markets,1.5 million rural sales outlets and about 60000 fair price shops. Thepopulation of India is widely scattered over villages and towns two thirdsof the consumers live in rural areas and almost half of the national incomeis generated here. 32% villages can be reached and are connected bypucca roads; still 68% of the rural market lies untapped due to variousreasons from inaccessibility to lack of awareness.Rural consumers are willing to go for premium brands in any productcategory. With the market providing them options, tastes are alsochanging. Old reliable like detergent cakes and single –edged bladeshave given way for detergent powders and twin blades.Companies such as Hindustan lever, Godrej, Palmolive, Cavin-care,Nerolac paints, Asian paints, Glaxo and many others have made in-roadsinto the countryside. Rural reach is on rise and it is fast becoming the mostimportant route to growth. The rural population occupies an importantposition in the Indian market.
Low Literacy level
It is estimated that the literacy level in rural India is 45%ascompared to 52% for the entire country .The rural literacy in the rural areais on an increase. Among the rural population Kerala tops with 77%.However the Literacy rates the much lower in Bihar and Rajasthan.
Rural income
Rural prosperity and the discretionary income with rural areconsumer is directly up with agricultural prosperity. A large part of theincome is spent on meeting the basic necessities of life i.e. food, clothingand shelter leaving a smaller portion for other consumer goods.
Rural savings
The rural consumers have been drawn into the saving habitin a big way. The commercial banks and the co-operatives have beenmarketing the saving habit in the rural areas for quite some years. Todaynearly 70% of the rural households are saving a part of their income.
In the rural area the main occupation is farming, trading, craft andother odd jobs, like plumbing, electrical work, masonry work, carpentryetc.
Reference groups
In rural areas the primary health workers, doctors, teachers and thePanchayat-Raj members belong to the reference groups and alsoinfluence in the decision making process of the rural consumers.
Media habits
The rural folk are very much fond of music and folklore. TAMASHAand NAUTANKI are the popular form of entertainment in Maharashtra andUttar Pradesh and then there are television, radio and video films.
Conscious customer
Rural customers though not well educated, have good commonsense, wise & sharp and are very conscious of “Value for money”.
Brand loyalist
Rural customer senses patronizing attitudes and even formidablebarriers to protect themselves and is bigger brand loyalists than their urban counterparts.
High degree of involvement
A typical rural customer checks and rechecks the expensiveproduct they are buying and they cannot be pushed too far as there is nourgent requirement for the products.
Inter-personal communication
A word of mouth recommendations by users and sheer familiarityinfluences rural folk in their purchase decisions.
Decisions regarding the brand of consumer durables are taken bythe man in the household in consultation with others in the community.
Significant aspects
It can be seen in general sense low purchasing power, lowstandard of living, low per capita income, low literacy level and over alllow social and economic positions are traits of rural consumers.
Classifications of the rural consumers on the basis of economic status
The Affluent Group
This group is very small and can afford conspicuous consumption ofa highest order but they do not form a demand base large enough for manufacturing but with the exception for those who deal with real luxuryitems. The chilly merchants in Guntur (AP) and Cash rich wheat farmers inPunjab fall in the affluent s group.
The middle Class
This class is estimated to be 300 million in size and it is undergoingtremendous expansion. It constitutes the largest segment and it forms thebase for demand for manufactured goods in the country. The Jutefarmers in West Bengal and sugar cane cultivators in UP fall in this class.
The Poor
The size of this category is very large. This group receives thebenefits of several social, educational and economic schemes and mayadvance economically and merge into middle class. The poorest farmersgrowing jowar, bajra etc. of OrissaAnd Bihar comes under5 this class.
The basic foundation of every business is the consumer. In order tofine tone their marketing offers and achieve a high level of consumer’sacceptance and satisfaction, it is very important for the marketers toknow what consumer sees, thinks, prefer and buys. The emergence ofrural market has sparked a new interest among marketers to explore andunderstand them. An understanding of consumer behavior is essential informulating the marketing strategies.
Any inputs to any of our senses are termed as stimuli. They ariseinternally or externally. Inter stimuli originates from the individual own self.External stimuli are caused by environment or by marketing offer.Marketing stimuli includes a number of variables that affect consumer perception. The stimuli from environment may come from one or more ofthe factors or events in economic, political, technological or socio-culturalenvironment.

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