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Premium aura of foreign products fading: GroupM consumer insight study

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Premium aura of foreign products fading: GroupM consumer insight study

Group M’s Media Consumer Insights (MCI) 3D study in Asia has thrown up some interesting changes in the Indian consumer’s behaviour and mindset in 2004 as compared to 2001. Among a host of findings, it has also revealed insights into the evolving regional consumer segments and media consumption patterns.

It was observed that there was an increase in the number of young people who read the financial pages of a newspaper, and that the ‘Premium aura’ of foreign products was fading. Indexed on a base figure of 100 (for the year 2001), in 2004, the number of young people reading the financial pages of a newspaper was 118. Consumers aren’t so much in awe of foreign products now, with the belief that Indian products can be good too gaining precedence. The number who believed that foreign products were better was indexed at 94 (95 for male and 92 for female) in 2004.

A drastic reduction was noted in the importance of Television as the most important source of entertainment, with the index stopping at 86. And giving advertisers something to ponder about, the study found that AD-avoidance was on the rise in general, and especially among the ‘male’ (105) and ‘younger age groups’ (111).

The trend was elaborated by another finding, where the index for number of people who enjoy surfing the net as against watching TV was on the rise at 108. And an increasing number of people are now excited about the idea of shopping on the internet, according to the study, with the index at 108 in 2004 (111 for female).

It was also revealed that in the metros, coffee bars are more frequented than pubs and discos. With 100 as the base of pubs and discos, the index for coffee bars stood at 133.

The study also reveals some insights on the differential behavioural pattern of a South Indian consumer (Karnataka, AP, TN and Kerala). Based on 2004 data, and indexed on the All India base, the South Indian consumer was found to be a heavier media consumer, with scores of 105 for Television, 125 for Print, 105 for Internet and a whopping 129 for Cinema. And among the dailies, the genre preference for South Indians was topped by IT (110) and Film Reviews (129), while the rest of India reader preferred clothes and fashion-related news (107), says the study.

The South Indian consumer also showed higher committed to FMCG brands, while the ‘Rest of India’ consumers’ affinity lay with the durable brands. While up north the index read 106 for refrigerator brands, 105 for television brands, and 112 for cell phone brands, the South Indian consumer was more committed to toothpaste brands (105) and soap brands (106).

The study was launched in Asia five years ago. The company said that it has invested over five million US dollars in 3D Asia, covered over 80,000 people, 6,000 brands and more than 150 different media channels across the region.

On the methodology, it was shared that one of the three dimensions involved an extensive array of product usage, shopping, lifestyle and brand relationship questions. The second dimension was an academically developed social segmentation, with more than 250 attitude statements. Thirdly, 3D included a comprehensive study of media and communication channels ‘that reflect the new media world in Asia’.

These were findings of round three of the research. Round four on an India sample comprising of around 10000 is underway, and the insights of this round are to be made known by July 05. The company mentioned that till date the India market’s cumulative sample size was over 27,000.


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