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In India, rural markets are the markets of tomorrow. They are a big attraction for marketers and entrepreneurs, as the scope of future expansion lie in the development of rural markets. One might think that people living in such places do not have much disposable income, but with the overall growth of the economy there has been a substantial increase in the purchasing power of the rural communities. A steady and continuous growth in agriculture, along with increasing employment opportunities has led to a rise in their incomes. With so much competition in the urban market, it has become saturated as most of the capacity of the purchasers has already been targeted. As a result, marketers need to look into extending their product categories to unexplored markets, i.e., the rural market, and promote them in a way that would be appealing to the particular sector.

Now, according to the census definition, a rural consumer may not be well-educated, but he/she is definitely not stupid. They are blessed with a lot of common sense and are highly conscious of value for money. They think carefully before making any purchasing decision, specially a high-end product, as it involves shelling out a considerable amount of money. This makes promotion tricky for the marketers. The strategy that had been working for so long in the urban sector, won’t work in the rural areas. Tricky, clever, gimmicky or even suggestive advertising do not quite have the same effect on the rural consumers. Thus, marketers need to change their approach and come up with slice-of-life approaches, which are simple and direct, as they resonate with the audience and leave a much more lasting impression.

This is where below-the-line (BTL) marketing comes into play, and really is every marketer’s best way forward, when it comes to promoting their brands in the rural areas. What makes BTL different from other forms of marketing, and the reason it works with the rural audience, is that it is done on a more personal level. They are interactive in nature, and provide the brands with an opportunity to create a direct point of contact between them and the customers. This helps the marketers in multiple ways. It not only gives the brand the desired exposure and increases its visibility, it also helps make up the mind of consumers, since they get to try out the product first-hand through demonstrations. Considering how critical and particular the rural audience is, this direct approach helps establish trust, and instils confidence in consumers to go ahead with the purchase.

Mass media campaigns are required to generate ‘word of mouth’ publicity, and ensure that the brand is ‘top of mind’ when the rural customers are ready to make a brand decision in a product category. But what really hits the nail in the head and guarantees sales, is a well-conceived and executed BTL campaign, ensuring that the communication messages used, integrate well with the mass media campaign. The ability to provide opportunities for demonstration and to be able to touch and feel the products before purchase really makes all the difference with the rural customers.

We, at Abybaby Events Private Limited, pride ourselves for our BTL work. Nothing excites us more than coming up with creative, out-of-the-box ideas to attract and engage the target audience of our clients. We believe in concentrating on sparse opportunities and making a masterpiece out of the

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