The middle class of India is for whom most of the advertising is targeted. Even in the lower middle class, consumer products like biscuits, talcum powder, hair oil, hair cream, toilet soaps, leather foot ware, casual foot ware, wrist watches, quartz watches etc. are purchased.
To get a much better understanding of the middle class “male” head of the family, consider the following characteristics:
The middle class generally consists of security seeking people. Even though they are receptive to new ideas, they do not very readily dash into new ventures. The middle class man does not only want economic security, but he also wants emotional security.
He will not do something that is likely to upset his emotional ties. He wants social security. He wants to be part of society. He does not want to be a rebel or an outcast. Being part of society he enjoys a degree of protection. He is likely to welcome new innovations is they satisfy his sense of security. If he feels that a particular idea will help him improve his economic position or social relationships he will accept it. Anything that is likely to upset this balance is going to be discarded by him.
The middle class Indian normally lives in a fixed income. He has to manage his finance in a rigid budget. He wife selects reasonably good furnishings and uses modern cooking gadgets. He usually has a two-wheeler of this own. He aspires for the well-to-do lifestyle he sees on TV. So his purchases are generally materialistic in nature. Because of this he likes to make large purchases and pay for though the different credit facilities that are made available to him by the banks and other financial institutions.
Now days practically everything is made available to him on installment payments. The availability of credit facility acts as a temptation to buy. His desire for bringing home more and more material comforts is realized by the availability of credit facilities.
The State Bank Of India campaign of a few years ago, "Be a big shoppers! Make a big buy! Take home a car, a VCR or a sewing machine today! You can do it now with the big buy scheme..." appealed to many Indians.
The system of "credit cards" is also growing in the country at a very fast rate. It is expected that in the near future, Indians will be the biggest users of credit cards second only to America.
The middle class Indians have many of their possessions, largely because they are "status conscious" or "prestige conscious". The middle class man’s finances may be tight and he may even struggle to meet ends. Still, he looks for more than average comforts, and plans for more material possessions. These possessions act as status symbols. By appealing to this prestige a marketer may motivate the middle class man.
The middle class man is a home loving man. He assigns a lot of importance to the well being of his family. He spends a good portion of his income on the education of his children. His children get priority in his budget. He without much resistance will adjust to the changing fashions of his college going children even though these changes may be costly for him. The concept of "small family more comforts" has gone well with him. The "family tie" binds him so strongly that anything that appeals to this "human bond" will find his ready acceptance.
His son's education or his daughter’s marriage are life long dreams for him. Any thing that appeals to these dreams will catch his immediate attention.
However, the middle class man is greatly influenced by his wife especially on his buying decisions. Tooth-paste, hair oil, magazines or tape recorders, the purchasing decision is consented by her. There are certain buying decisions that are made by his wife solely so the middle class housewife is another important person to study from the marketing point of view.
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