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The Regional Rural banks are relatively new banking institutions which were added to the Indian Banking scene since October, 1975. There are 196 Regional Rural Banks with a network of branches in the States of the Indian Union. These banks have been established by the Government of India in terms of the provisions of the Regional Rural Banks Act, 1976. The distinctive feature of a rural bank is that though it is a separate body corporate with perpetual succession and common seal, it is very closely linked with the commercial bank which has sponsored the proposal to establish it. The Central Government while establishing a rural bank at the request of the commercial bank specifies the local limits within which it shall operate. The rural bank may establish its branches or agencies at any place within the notified area. The necessity of rural banks was felt because the then existing credit agencies the cooperative banks and the commercial banks lacked in certain respects in meeting the needs of the rural areas. The weaknesses of these institutions in this regard may be summed up as follows:

The co-operative credit structure is weak so far as the managerial talent and post credit supervision and loan recovery are concerned. These institutions have not been able to mobilize adequate resources and therefore depend upon the Reserve Bank for re-finance to a large extent.

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The commercial banks are basically urban-oriented, if they have to play a significant role in rural banking, their methods procedures, training and orientation shall have to be adapted to

the rural environment. This is not likely to be achieved easily and quickly. Moreover, the cost of their operations is quite high due to high salary structure, staffing pattern and high establishment cost. Thus the commercial banks are unable to provide credit at cheap rates to the weaker sections in the rural areas.

The need was, therefore, felt for a new institution which should combine the merits of these two institutions without suffering from their drawbacks. A Rural Bank has been contemplated as an institution to combine the rural touch and local feel, a familiarity with rural problems and attitudinal identification with the rural economy which the co-operatives possess in large degree, with the modern business organization, commercial discipline ability to mobilize resources and access to the central money

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markets which the commercial banks have. In other words, the institution of rural banks is intended to be locally based rural oriented and commercially organized.

Capital: Initially the authorized share capital of each Rural Bank was Rs 1 crore, divided into 1 lakh shares of Rs 100 each. Fifty per cent of the issued capital was subscribed to by the Central Government fifteen percent by the concerned State Governments and thirty five percent by the sponsor bank. With the enactment of the Regional Rural Banks (Amendment) Act 1987 the authorized capital of each RRB has been raised to Rs 5 crores and paid up capital to Rs 1 crore . The Board of Directors of a Rural Bank may after consultation with the Reserve Bank and the sponsoring banks and with prior approval of the Central Government, increase the issued capital from time to time. The additional capital shall be subscribed in the

same proportion as is specified above. The shares of the Rural Banks shall be deemed to be included in the securities enumerated in Section 20 of the Indian Trusts Act, 1882 and shall also be deemed it be approved securities for the purposes of the banking Regulation Act, 1949.

Business of a Rural Bank: A Rural bank in the normal banking business i.e. the business of banking as defined in Section 5 (b) of the Banking Regulation ct, 1949 and engages in one or more forms of business specified in Section 6[1] of that Act. A Rural Bank may, in particular, undertake the following types of business, namely:

The granting of loans and advances particularly to small and marginal farmers and agricultural laborers, whether individual or in groups and to co-operative societies(including agricultural marketing societies , agricultural processing securities, co-operative farming societies, primary agricultural credit societies or farmers service societies) for agricultural purpose or agricultural operations or for other connected purpose and the granting of loans and advances, particularly to artisans small entrepreneurs and persons of small means engaged in trade, commerce or industry or other productive activities within the notified area of a Rural Bank.

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Regional Rural Bank

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The Government of India set up Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) on October 2, 1975.

Initially, five RRBs were set up on October 2, 1975 which were sponsored by Syndicate Bank, State Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, United Commercial Bank and United Bank of India. Capital share being 50% by the central government, 15% by the state government and 35% by the scheduled bank.[1]

Earlier Reserve Bank of India had laid down ceilings on the rate of interest to be charged by these RRBs. However from August 1996 the RRBs have been granted freedom to fix rates of interest, which is usually in the range of 14-18% for advances.

Now RRBs planned to take CWE (Combined Written Examination) for recruitment in any of 84 RRBs as declared by Government of India, ministry of Finance, Department of Financial Services .The IBPS will conduct the examination and issue a valid scorecard to all the qualifying candidates, which will be a pre-requisite for candidates to apply for above mentioned cadres in the RRBs, when advertise for Recruitment . Details can be had from Employment news & other news paper, as also from the web sites of IBPS & Concerned RRBs.

[edit] References

1. ^ National Bank for Rural and Agricultural Development (NABARD). Financial Report, Chapter 5 Regional Rural Banks

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Banking in India Central bank

Reserve Bank of India

Allahabad Bank Andhra Bank Bank of Baroda Bank of India Bank of Maharashtra Canara Bank Central Bank of India Corporation Bank Dena Bank IDBI Bank Indian Bank Indian Overseas Bank Oriental Bank of Commerce Punjab & Sind Bank Punjab National Bank Syndicate Bank UCO Bank Union Bank of India United Bank of India Vijaya Bank

Nationalised banks

State Bank of India State Bank of Bikaner & Jaipur State Bank of Hyderabad State Bank of Indore State Bank of Mysore State Bank of Patiala State Bank of Travancore State Bank of Saurashtra

Axis Bank Catholic Syrian Bank City Union Bank Development Credit Bank Dhanlaxmi Bank Federal Bank HDFC Bank ICICI Bank IndusInd Bank ING Vysya Bank Jammu & Kashmir Bank Karnataka Bank Karur Vysya Bank Kotak Mahindra Bank Lakshmi Vilas Bank Saraswat Bank

Private banks

South Indian Bank Tamilnad Mercantile Bank Limited Yes Bank

ABN AMRO Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank Antwerp Diamond Bank Bank Internasional Indonesia Bank of America Bank of Bahrain and Kuwait Bank of Ceylon Bank of Nova Scotia The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ Barclays Bank Citibank India Credit Suisse Deutsche Bank HSBC Royal Bank of Scotland Standard Chartered

Foreign banks

North Malabar Gramin Bank South Malabar Gramin Bank Vananchal Gramin Bank

Regional Rural Banks

Defunct Banks

Alliance Bank of Simla

Arbuthnot & Co Bank of Bombay Bank of Chettinad Bank of Madras Bank of Madura Bank of Rajasthan Bengal Central Bank Bharat Overseas Bank Bank of Calcutta Centurion Bank of Punjab Chartered Bank of India, Australia and China Commercial Bank of India Dass Bank Grindlays Bank Imperial Bank of India Lord Krishna Bank Mercantile Bank of India, London and China Nath Bank Oriental Bank Corporation Palai Central Bank

BANCS Cashnet CashTree Cirrus

Interbank network

MITR NFS PLUS RuPay

Automated Teller Machine (ATM) ATM usage fees De-Materialisation (DEMAT) Foreign Exchange (FOREX) Financial Services Indian Financial System Code (IFSC) Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) National Electronic Fund Transfer (NEFT) Structured Financial Messaging System (SFMS) National Payments Corporation of India

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Regional Rural Banks in India Rural banking in India started since the establishment of banking sector in India. Rural Banks in those days mainly focussed upon the agro sector. Regional rural banks in India penetrated every corner of the country and extended a helping hand in the growth process of the country.

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SBI has 30 Regional Rural Banks in India known as RRBs. The rural banks of SBI is spread in 13 states extending from Kashmir to Karnataka and Himachal Pradesh to North East. The total number of SBIs Regional Rural Banks in India branches is 2349 (16%). Till date in rural banking in India, there are 14,475 rural banks in the country of which 2126 (91%) are located in remote rural areas.

Apart from SBI, there are other few banks which functions for the development of the rural areas in India. Few of them are as follows.

Haryana State Cooperative Apex Bank Limited

The Haryana State Cooperative Apex Bank Ltd. commonly called as HARCOBANK plays a vital role in rural banking in the economy of Haryana State and has been providing aids and financing farmers, rural artisans, agricultural labourers, entrepreneurs, etc. in the state and giving service to its depositors.

NABARD

National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) is a development bank in the sector of Regional Rural Banks in India. It provides and regulates credit and gives service for the promotion and development of rural sectors mainly agriculture, small scale industries, cottage and village industries, handicrafts. It also finance rural crafts and other allied rural economic activities to promote integrated rural development. It helps in securing rural prosperity and its connected matters.

Sindhanur Urban Souharda Co-operative Bank

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Sindhanur Urban Souharda Co-operative Bank, popularly known as SUCO BANK is the first of its kind in rural banks of India. The impressive story of its inception is interesting and inspiring for all the youth of this country.

United Bank of India

United Bank of India (UBI) also plays an important role in regional rural banks. It has expanded its branch network in a big way to actively participate in the developmental of the rural and semi-urban areas in conformity with the objectives of nationalisation.

Syndicate Bank was firmly rooted in rural India as rural banking and have a clear vision of future India by understanding the grassroot realities. Its progress has been abreast of the phase of progressive banking in India especially in rural banks.

REGIONAL RURAL BANKS

The Narasimham committee on rural credit recommended the establishment of Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) on the ground that they would be much better suited than the commercial banks or co-operative banks in meeting the needs of rural areas. Accepting the recommendations of the Narasimham committee, the government passed the Regional Rural Banks Act, 1976. A significant development in the field of banking during 1976 was the establishment of 19 Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) under the Regional Rural Banks Act1976. The RRBs were established with a view to developing the rural economy by providing, for the purpose of development of agriculture, trade, commerce, industry and other productive activities in the rural areas, credit and other facilities, particularly to small and marginal

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farmers, agricultural labourers, artisans and small entrepreneurs, and for matters connected therewith and incidental thereto .

Objective Functions Regional Rural Banks in India Regional Rural Banks in Tamil Nadu

RRBs established with the explicit objective of


Bridging the credit gap in rural areas Check the outflow of rural deposits to urban areas Reduce regional imbalances and increase rural employment generation

The main objectives of setting up the RRB is to provide credit and other facilities especially to the small and marginal farmers agricultural labourers artisans and small entrepreneurs in rural areas.

Each RRB will operate within the local limits specified by notification. If necessary a RRB will also establish branches or agencies at places notified by the Government. Each RRB is sponsored by a public sector bank which provides assistance in several ways viz., subscription to its share capital provision of such managerial and financial assistance as may be mutually agreed upon and help the recruitment and training of personnel during the initial period of its functioning.

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Functions

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Every RRB is authorized to carry on to transact the business of banking as defined in the Banking Regulation Act and may also engage in other business specified in Section 6 (1) of the said Act. In particular a RRB is required to undertake the business of (a) granting loans and advances to small and marginal farmers and agricultural laborers whether individually or in groups, and to cooperative societies including agricultural marketing societies agricultural processing societies cooperative farming societies primary agricultural credit societies or farmers service societies primary agricultural purposes or agricultural operations or other related purposes, and (b) granting loans and advances to artisans small entrepreneurs and persons of small means engaged in trade commerce industry or other productive activities within its area of operation. The Reserve Bank of India has brought RRBs under the ambit of priority sector lending on par with the commercial banks. They have to ensure that forty percent of their advances are accounted for the priority sector. Within the 40% priority target, 25% should go to weaker section or 10% of their total advances to go to weaker section.

Regional Rural Banks in India

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The State Bank of India is one of the major commercial banks having regional rural banks. There are 30 Regional Rural Banks in India, under the State Bank of India and it is spread in

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13 states across India. The number of branches the SBI Regional Rural Banks is more than 2000.

Several other banks, apart from the State Bank of India also functions as the promoter of rural development in India.

The other Regional Rural Banks in India are -

Haryana State Cooperative Apex Bank Limited

The main purpose of the Haryana State Cooperative Apex Bank Limited is to financially assist the artisans in the rural areas, farmers and agrarian unskilled labor, and the small rural entrepreneurs of Haryana. Haryana State Cooperative Apex Bank Limited also referred as the HARCOBANK, is one of the apex organizations in the state of Haryana. The HARCOBANK holds a special economic position in the state of Haryana. The Haryana State Cooperative Apex Bank Limited offers several types of financial assistances to the individuals. The financial aids include credit for the promotion of agriculture, non-agrarian credit, and bank deposit facilities. The HARCOBANK have been functioning as an investor for more than three decades.

National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development

The main purpose of the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development is to provide credit for the development and publicity of small scaled industries, handicrafts, rural crafts, village industries, cottage industries, agriculture, etc. The NABARD also supports all other related economic operations in the rural sector, promotion of sustainable growth in the rural sector. The NABARD also plays the role of a contributor to the rural development by the means of promoting institutional development, facilitating refinance to loan providers in the

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rural sector, inspection, monitoring, and evaluation of client financial corporations. National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) was established as the premiere rural development bank.

Sindhanur Urban Souharda Co-operative Bank

The main purpose of the Sindhanur Urban Souharda Co-operative Bank is to provide financial support to the rural sector. The Sindhanur Urban Souharda Co-operative Bank is more commonly known as the SUCO Bank.

United Bank of India

The role played by the United Bank of India (UBI) as one of the regional rural banks is phenomenal. The UBI has propagated the network of branches in order to actively take part in the rural improvement and development.

Syndicate Bank

The Syndicate Bank has it grass roots in the rural sector. The development of the Syndicate Bank was in accordance to the development of the banking sector in India and. The Syndicate Bank has performed actively in the development of the rural sector in India.

The Regional Rural Banks in India has actively contributed to the growth of the rural sector. The growth of the rural industries in India and the development of the rural business and economy have been dependent largely on the investment and financial aids provided by the Regional Rural Banks in India.

Regional Rural Banks in Tamil Nadu

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Indian Bank has sponsored two Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) viz., Saptagiri Grameena Bank and Pallavan Grama Bank.

Pallavan Grama Bank with Head Quarters at Salem is operating in 14 districts of Tamilnadu viz., Salem, Namakkal, Krishnagiri, Dharmapuri, Villupuram, Cuddalore, Coimbatore, Karur, Erode, Nilgiris, Vellore, Tiruvannamalai, Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur.

The third RRB sponsored by Indian Bank is Puduvai Bharathiar Grama Bank at Union Territory of Puducherry with its head quarters at Puducherry.

OBJECTIVES OF RRB

The RBBs Act has made various provisions regarding the incorporation, regulation and working of RRBs. According to this Act, the RRBs are to be set-up mainly with a view to develop rural economy by providing credit facilities for the purpose of development of agriculture, trade, commerce, industry and other productive activities in the rural areas. Such facility is provided particularly to the small and marginal farmers, agricultural labourers, artisans, and small entrepreneurs and for other related matters. The objectives of RRBs can be summarized as follows: (i) To provide cheap and liberal credit facilities to small and marginal farmers, agriculture labourers, artisans, small entrepreneurs and other weaker sections. (ii) To save the rural poor from the moneylenders.

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(iii) To act as a catalyst element and thereby accelerate the economic growth in the particular region. (iv) To cultivate the banking habits among the rural people and mobilize savings for the economic development of rural areas. (v) To increase employment opportunities by encouraging trade and commerce in rural areas. (vi) To encourage entrepreneurship in rural areas. (vii) To cater to the needs of the backward areas which are not covered by the other efforts of the Government? (viii) To develop underdeveloped regions and thereby strive to remove economic disparity between regions.

MARKETING OF BANKING SERVICES IN RURAL AREAS

Banks today are operating in a highly competitive and rapidly changing environment. In the changing economic scenario, a professional approach to business development is essential and the survival of a banking institution depends on its ability to take up challenges coming up in the environment. Developing business through marketing of banks services is one of the crucial areas which need attention of the bankers to ensure profitable survival.

MARKETING : CONCEPTS The role of marketing in an organisations existence and growth need not be overemphasized in todays competitive environment. According to Peter Drucker, marketing is so basic that

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it cannot be considered a separate function. It is the whole business seen from the point of view of its final result, that is, customers point of view. Survival of an organisation depends upon its ability to acquire resources necessary for its sustenance. One of the modes of survival, as observed by Philip Kotler, is exchange, whereby an organisation creates and offers goods and services that are able to attract and satisfy the purchasers, in exchange of its value. This option can be gainfully exercised only if the organisation develops the capacity to produce the needed goods and services. The organisations should be geared to identify the customer needs and preferences which are subject to change over a period of time.

One of the policy issues discussed in marketing is the ultimate objective of the marketing efforts of an organisation. The general belief is that the objectives of marketing is to maximise the markets consumption of your products and services. However, it would be desirable to set the goal at maximising consumer satisfaction, rather than consumption. The organisation, in the long run, is likely to benefit from a customer oriented approach to marketing. The approach, in other words, should ensure strong foundation for the institutions existence, because the concepts of marketing has its origin on the premise that man is a creature of needs and wants. And there is constant effort on his side to satisfy his needs. Further, his needs and wants keep changing with time, circumstances and the immediate environment in which he is operating. Marketing management essentially involves the efforts to achieve the need satisfaction of the target group the institution is trying to serve.

There are various philosophical aspects which can give conceptual orientation to marketing personnels approach. The selling concept assumes that the consumers will either not buy or not buy enough of an organisations products unless the organisation makes a substantial effort to stimulate their interests in its products. This becomes all the more relevant when the organisations are functioning in a rich environment of competitors. Product Concept in

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marketing philosophy assumes that the consumers will favour those products that offer best quality for the price, while production concept assumes that consumers will favour those products which are available and affordable. An organisations task, therefore, should be to serve target markets in a way that produces not only want satisfaction, but long-run individual and social benefit as the key to attracting and holding customers.

The need for a well defined institutional framework within the organisation to manage the marketing efforts should be reckoned by any business concern. It is, therefore, essential that the institution constitutes a marketing wing which will take care of the marketing function of the organisation. This compartment has to work smoothly with other segments of the organisation. Acquiring modern marketing orientation requires support from top management, a committed task force, constant review of strategies and a consultants help if considered necessary. The marketing wing should be adequately supported by a Marketing Information System, which is a critical element in effective marketing. The information system is the channel linking external environment with the executives of the institution.

BANK MARKETING : Marketing philosophy, in any context, refer to the need satisfaction of the institutions clients. The basic step involves identifying the needs of the customers and developing products to suit their needs or modifying the existing products accordingly. It also requires the need for foreseeing wants of the customers in future and developing suitable products of their requirement. Deryk Weyer of Barclays Bank attempted a comprehensive definition for Bank Marketing. According to him, it consists of identifying the most profitable markets now and in future; assessing the present and future needs of customers; setting business development goals and marketing plans to meet them and managing the various services and promoting

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them to achieve the plans, all in the context of a changing market environment. Successful marketing in a bank calls for commitment at all levels to the task defined in this regard. Achieving higher business standards and operational performance through marketing of banking services should be one of the directional goals of the organisation.

The Indian banking system, by habit and tradition, considered deposit growth as the business objective and other parameters such as productivity, profitability, customer satisfaction, etc. were considered less important. In view of the competitive surroundings in which a bank is compelled to function, there is need for formulation of a strategic action plan for its marketing efforts. A marketing strategy, in general, is a systematic, appropriate and feasible set of concepts and actions through which the institution strives to achieve its goal of customer satisfaction and profitable survival. Strategy should be designed after taking into account the strengths and weaknesses of the organisation. For example, a bank or branch with clientele from various segments could think of market penetration by offering the existing range of services to existing customers. On the other hand, a bank which is having expanding business through new branches or branches which are not facing acute competition could think of Market Development by offering the existing services to new customers. However, the real marketing challenges arise from the institutions capability to design new product range for their customers of various segments. The strategy, therefore, lies in increasing the client base and consolidating the relationship with existing and new clients through existing or newly developed products.

The operational aspects of strategies for marketing contain actions such as development of Relationship Banking, designing of effective delivery system, ensuring customer-oriented services and modifying the system into a personal selling organisation. In western banking, officials assigned the job of personally contacting the customers and offering the services at

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doorsteps had been able to make a significant impact on the development of business for their organisations. The importance and role of personal selling and customer contacts in the marketing efforts of a banking institution stem from the success of such efforts in many banking institutions all over the world.

The implementation of the strategies is as crucial as its design in ensuring successful marketing. The communication of the adopted strategies to different tiers of the institution and ensuring of its proper understanding by personnel at all levels, is essential for successful implementation of the strategies. The communication becomes difficult in organisations which have substantial branch network spread over a large geographical area. The field staff at the branch level should be trained to implement the strategies after modifying them to suit the environment in which they are operating. The knowledge of the local environment, demographic features and cultural aspects is an essential requirement for the field staff involved in marketing efforts for the organisation.

RURAL PSYCHOLOGY AND BANK MARKETING :

Banks have a great role to play in the development of rural areas and improvement in rural life. In order to play this role effectively, the banker should have fair knowledge of the sociopsychological aspects of the rural society he is serving. First of all, the banker should be aware of the Human Groups and Institutions in the area of operation. This means that one should be aware of the role of agriculture in the rural economy, cultural aspects of the society, community aspects, family and farm patterns, institutional facilities, etc. Secondly, the Process of Change, if any, taking place in the rural scenario, should be known to him. The general changes that take place in the rural scenario include urbanization, industrialisation, migration, social mobility, changes in values, farm structure, etc. Thirdly,

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there could be Planned Changes, generally emanating from administration of voluntary organisations, such as resettlement, land reforms, community development, agricultural extension work, education etc, of which the field staff should be familiar. Fourthly, a general idea of the status of various development projects under execution, welfare measures, schemes under implementation, etc. will help the banker to have a complete picture of the rural society in which he is operating. The knowledge on all these aspects of the rural society will help the banker in choosing the right approach to the clients in rural areas since education of the people on the services offered is an integral part of effective marketing. The psychology of the rural people should be properly understood. It is only normal that the people in rural areas do not adopt a practice immediately. In fact, the tendency of an illiterate person is to distrust the same. The banking habits are no exception to this. But subsequently, on being properly educated, he may develop interest and would like to know more about. If the information imparted convinces him that the idea is something useful, he enters the t third stage of thinking about the possibility of accepting the idea for his benefit. Thus, there are different stages in the adoption process of the rural folks, which should be clearly understood by the field personnel.

The cultural pattern of the rural folks influence their economic behaviour considerably. Some rural communities may have a modern pattern of culture. These communities would be ever willing to try something new if they are convinced that it can improve their present position. Dissemination of information on banks services become easy and the results are achieved at a faster pace with such groups. On the other hand, groups characterised by traditional pattern of culture are generally opposed to change. Their main concern will be to preserve what has been the tradition and resists intrusion in to their ways of living. Effective marketing becomes difficult while dealing with such groups. Members of the group with a modern pattern of culture tend to be individualistic, while system of social control will

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be more in groups with traditional pattern. In such groups, where tradition is emphasised, a far reaching change in attitude towards anything, especially banking habits can be brought about only with the support of their Clan Leaders. The clan leaders are the people whom the rest of the community will listen to or whose approval, explicit or otherwise, the people look forward to for accepting anything new. It is quite possible that these leaders are not formal leaders of the group such as political leaders, but could be an elderly person or a religious leader of the community trusted by the general public. Success in approaching such rural societies definitely lies in understanding the rural psychology in this regard and identifying such influential individuals from the rural masses. Any effort, therefore, to popularise the banking services in rural areas call for absolute knowledge about the social structures, the culture, the functioning of the rural groups and the nature and type of their leadership.

Changes are taking place in contemporary rural society, though at a slower pace. The elements of dynamism of stability is existent in the rural environment, in the case of urban areas, though not operative in identical degrees or patterns. The changes, however, have been generally confined to changes in the agricultural pattern, community aspects and some general changes in the economic scenario. These changes, however, generate scope for institutional services in various segments of the rural economys operation and the banking institutions should capitalise on the same through deep penetration into rural households. This can be made possible only if the banks personnel are aware of the changes taking place in the rural environment and design their approach to the situation in a skillful manner. Modifying the services to suit the dynamic environment is considered as the backbone of marketing efforts. However, while designing or modifying, it should be ensured that the products are not inconsistent with basic attitudes and cultural values of the people. Rapidity

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of acceptance of innovations is a function of many factors, including the nature of innovation and its relationship to existing cultural patterns.

Banking institutions are vehicles of economic development. According to Rostow, economic theories and development concepts should be linked to sociological and psychological elements, if it is to be maximally useful. Gunar Myrdal had opined that attitudes and institutions play a significant role in rapid economic development. Psychology, as a science of human behaviour emphasises the influence of human factors which accelerate or impede the rapid acceptance of innovative ideas. Marketing efforts in the rural areas should be designed with proper emphasis on these influential factors.

BANK MARKETING : ROLE OF PERSONNEL

The marketing strategy for rural areas, by and large, assigns a responsible role on branch officials in bringing out socio-economic transformation of the rural society. There is need for a total marketing approach from the personnel to penetrate all levels in all areas of banking operations. Efforts need to be made to design and launch suitably tailored services to meet its changing needs of the rural population. The personnel attempting marketing in rural areas should be able to establish an organic link with rural masses. They should be committed to the cause of rural upliftment and should implement in totality the market strategies formed for the purpose. The knowledge of the command area of the branch and the ability to identify potential customers and their financial needs are pre-requisites for the success of marketing strategies. This calls for the need of training the staff with sharp focus on improving the knowledge of the bank staff about the rural atmosphere and the skills necessary to deal with the rural customers. There is also need for developing a sense of belonging towards the organisation, customers and the society. The field staff, to the extent possible, should know

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the language and dialect of the people and should be able to communicate in a manner which is appealing to the people. The organisation on their part, therefore, should take adequate care in identifying the right people for this specific job. They should also foster innovative and creative approach in working to bring in new and original ideas and develop talent. There is also need for rationalisation of the work load for the personnel in the rural branches to enable them to give adequate attention to the villagers and their requirements. Further, the institutions need to motivate their personnel for popularising the services in rural areas. Every member of the staff is a salesman of the banks services and an ambassador of the institution among people. Marketing efforts made by the personnel and its effect on business development should be appreciated and rewarded by the bank management.

The bank personnel, as a matter of strategy, should try to find a place in the hearts of the rural folks. Role of personal influence on acceptance of an organisation or services in the rural scenario should be kept in mind. The personal influence refers to the effect of statements made by one person about the bank or its services on another persons attitude towards the institution. In a village, people generally know one another and have time and patience to converse with one another. Opinion on the institution and its services are discussed among local people. A satisfied customer always acts as an ambassador of goodwill for the bank and brings clientele through his own efforts. The personnel, therefore, should strive for customer satisfaction as a marketing strategy, if not as the objective of the organisation.

In conclusion, it may be understood that the success of marketing of banking services in rural areas depends on how the organisation properly blends the marketing concepts with the right approach required to penetrate into rural households. And the final result of the efforts will depend on the sincerity and zeal of the field personnel making the efforts and the organisational support available to them.

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