1. What is Rural Marketing in India?
Rural marketing is a combination of a well-developed product, fair pricing, proper placement, and adequate awareness above all marketing function planning and implementation for the rural area of India.
2. Scope of Marketing in Rural India
According to the world bank development indicator, the rural population accounted for 65.07% of the total population of India in 2020. The Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) sector in rural and semi-urban India is estimated to cross US$ 100 billion by 2025, according to India Brand Equity Foundation. Another release by McKinsey Global Institute forecasts the actual annual income per household in rural India to increase to 3.6 percent in 2025, from 2.8 percent in the last 20 years.
These are some incredible statistics of the Rural Market! Isn’t it?
Consumers in rural areas desire precisely what is popular in urban areas. They will not take anything less than the best and will not compromise on quality or brand.
According to the third annual edition of Accenture Research, rural consumers are particularly aspiring or seeking to purchase branded, high-quality products, “Masters of Rural Markets: From Touchpoints to Trustpoints – Winning Over India’s Aspiring Rural Consumers.”
This results in Indian businesses being enthusiastic about the country’s rural consumer markets, which are predicted to grow quicker than urban consumer markets.
To harness this immense rural market potential, a marketing plan must take into account the unique characteristics of rural areas and the attitudes and socio-psychological aspects of the rural residents.
3. Factors Contributing to The Growing Popularity of Rural Marketing in India Among Businesses
Rural markets in India have grown in importance in recent years, as economic growth has resulted in a significant increase in the purchasing power of rural communities, making the rural market popular among businesses. Therefore, companies are taking advantage of the situation by marketing in rural India.
The following are the key points that are all interconnected and provide companies in India with an opportunity to grow in the rural heartland:
Increased Internet Penetration
According to a report by IAMAI Kantar ICUBE 2020, internet adoption in rural areas of the country has risen by 13% in the last year to 299 million internet users, accounting for 31% of India’s rural population. As a result of increased internet penetration, there is an increase in online rural shopping. Most villagers use android devices and computers to order household goods and products.
Improved Networking Skills
The improved networking skills of rural consumers and their proclivity to seek information from various sources to be better informed when making purchasing decisions provide businesses with an excellent opportunity to do rural marketing in India‘s rural areas. Most importantly, increased media and telecommunications service reach has brought information to India’s rural consumers, influencing their purchasing decisions.
More Employment Prospects
The worker population ratio of rural areas saw a significant increase from 35% in 2017-18 to 39.2% in 2019-20. This reflects the increased employment in rural India due to numerous rural development programs. Businesses are strongly inclining toward this significant shift, which will result in them conducting marketing in rural India.
According to Statista, by 2022, an estimated 131 million households will have an annual income of $5,000 to $10,000, up from 92 million households in 2019. Rural income now accounts for 56% of total income and is growing at a 5.6 percent annual rate, while urban income is only growing at a 5.4 percent annual rate.
4. Types of Rural Marketing in India
Following are the six significant types of rural marketing in India-
Rural Periodic Marketing
Rural periodic marketing is done in Rural Haats, Melas, and Mandees. Many people congregate at these periodic markets, providing opportunities for businesses to display their wares. Every week, new haats open, bringing a diverse range of products to buyers at low prices.
A haat is a more promising location for promotion than for brand building. Mandees, on the other hand, is a touchpoint for farmers to sell their farm produce after harvesting, where they receive cash after crop sale, making mandees a strategic point for rural marketing agencies like us to tap farmers for consumer durable, automobile type high ticket selling items.
Rural Retail Marketing
Rural retail marketing raises brand awareness at rural counters, which keeps customers interested. There are eye-catching visuals to boost sales and effective communication skills to deliver product information in India for this type of marketing. Proper rural market research is essential for rural retail marketing because it allows businesses to connect emotionally with their target rural audience and convert them into loyal rural customers.
Rural Van Marketing
In rural India, marketing is done by using vans outfitted with exhibit panels, manpower, and A/V equipment. These vans distribute flyers, give product and service demos, give away free product samples, and organize exciting games and contests for rural audiences through effective tailor-made communication programs.
Rural Influencer Marketing
Despite significant increases in Internet penetration, literacy rate, growing educational facilities, and so on, rural influencer marketing remains in demand in the rural ecosystem. In this type of marketing, influencers such as teachers, panchayats, Anganwadi workers, and village level entrepreneurs, directly and indirectly, influence people in rural areas to sell products and services by communicating in local languages for effective communication representing business marketing in rural India.
Find the right influencers whose opinions matter and influence rural audiences for this business.
Rural Digital Marketing
According to CSE e-governance services data from 2020, total Internet data consumption in rural regions for YouTube and Facebook was 23418 GB and 17527 GB, respectively.
This demonstrates that both social media channels are gaining popularity in rural India, making it easier for businesses to market in rural India. Marketing activities include Facebook marketing, YouTube marketing, paid marketing campaigns, video promotion, OTT visibility, search engine optimization activities, and so on.
Rural Mobile Marketing
According to the India Cellular & Electronics Association (ICEA), smartphone penetration in rural India increased from 9% in 2015 to 25% in 2018. Mobile devices now account for 97% of all internet users in India. With the rise in mobile usage, the purchasing pattern is improving. Indian Marketers are using WhatsApp to reach out to people in rural areas. Text messages are sent to feature phone users in rural parts of India, and innovative voice OBD and missed call marketing services are used.
Looking at the vast Indian rural market, businesses should focus on Rural Marketing in India, and reaching out to rural marketing agencies in India is an excellent way to achieve their rural marketing goals, as these agencies are experts in conducting rural marketing research and applying innovative rural marketing ideas strategically that work well in the emerging markets, delivering desired results within the time frame specified.
Written by – Kirti
Consumer preferences in India’s rural areas differ from those in the cities. Businesses can increase their worth by providing value to their rural consumers. Interactive sessions with the target audience to develop a relationship between the product’s features and the needs and preferences of the rural consumers can be one of the best approaches to promoting the product while increasing awareness. Also, social media marketing is critical for brands in deepening customer connections.