Challenges in Indian rural advertising

Statistics say that rural areas account for 70% of the country’s population, and urban areas account for the remaining 30%. It’s a fact that rural markets provide huge opportunities as they are predominant in terms of population.

Opportunities of the rural market:

  • Increase in demand.
  • Huge investments are made on the rural development by the Government and other sources.
  • Increase in literacy rate of rural areas.
  • Inflow and outflow of foreign goods and services to and from rural areas is another opportunity.

The rural advertising agency faces several challenges due to the limitations in facilities in the rural areas. An attempt is made to list out all the challenges faced by them in this article.

  • Underprivileged resources:

Despite the huge investments made on rural development, all the resources are not available to the rural people. The investment isn’t sufficient for the huge rural population. The resources in rural areas remain underprivileged. Resources that hamper efficient rural advertising are electric power, telecommunication system and broadcasting, and the infrastructure.

  • Wide area coverage and scattered consumers:

The rural consumers are scattered over a wide range of areas. The rural market is also dispersed over wide areas. Advertising in rural areas becomes difficult and requires time and money investment to reach out to the large rural population.

  • Communication barrier:

Communication is the root of all advertising or marketing. Lack of proper communication facilities hampers the advertising in rural market. The traditional and mass media aid in overcoming the communication barriers. The traditional media include puppetry, audio visual vans, video clipping, digital wall paintings, posters, postcards, folk theatre, etc. The mass media include television, cinemas, press, and print media.

  • Seasonal markets:

The rural market is seasonal. The demand is either too high or too low depending upon the agricultural environment i.e. the seasons. This leads to difficulty in advertising and marketing.

  • Costly and time-consuming:

Lack of proper communication facilities makes the advertising agency to take responsibility of setting up the required facilities. Strategies are to be developed which are a bit time and cost consuming. Strategies like digital wall paintings, live demonstrations, shows and events, do consume money to ensure proper rural advertising service.

  • Low literacy rate:

Though the rural literacy rate has increased with time, it is still a barrier in rural advertising. The major problem is that the rural people cannot read and identify the brand names. This provides an opportunity for the clones to bring products with similar designs and labels and cheat the rural people. Rural advertising examples like ads on delivery vans, door to door demonstrations, microphone announcements, etc. are to be implemented.

Rural advertising is a daunting task for many marketing agencies due to the above-mentioned limitations and challenges. Innovative techniques and strategies are required to transform the way rural advertising is now. The use of the right technology can help rural areas go digital.

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