The Land

What is rural marketing?

Rural marketing involves the promotion of products, services, and consumer goods to rural audiences. Picture Shutterstock
Rural marketing involves the promotion of products, services, and consumer goods to rural audiences. Picture Shutterstock

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Chances are, you may already be aware of the traditional marketing channels and how they are utilised to promote products to various segments of the global marketplace. However, you may not yet be across rural marketing, and how it differs immensely from the marketing of consumer goods and services to metropolitan areas.

Critically, rural audiences make up a large proportion of consumer populations today. As such, if you want your product to reach the optimal amount of customers, regional communities are a market niche that should not be neglected!

Let's explore what exactly is involved in rural marketing, how rural marketing differs from other marketing channels, and also, why it is essential to include aspects of rural marketing as part of a holistic product marketing campaign.

Rural marketing: What is it exactly?

Rural marketing, quite unsurprisingly, involves the promotion of products, services, and consumer goods to rural audiences. Naturally, the predominant focus of rural marketing is to promote products and services that are specifically relevant to that particular audience.

Needless to say, the products of interest to a rural audience will usually encompass not only agricultural equipment, tools, and manufacturing products, but also, the area of fast-moving consumer goods (or FMCG, for short).

To clarify, when we speak of fast-moving consumer goods or FMCG products, we are usually referring to consumable goods that have a comparatively short shelf life. As such, the term FMCG relates to items such as manufactured food and beverages, fresh produce such as fruits and vegetables, pharmaceuticals and medicinal products, and other perishable items.

But, how exactly do you market fast-moving consumer goods to rural audiences specifically? Importantly, if you are an FMCG manufacturer or distributor who is looking to help your product stand out in an already highly saturated rural marketplace, you'll need assistance from marketing experts!

A great place to start in terms of marketing your FMCG product is to engage the services of a professional FMCG branding agency. This helps to take the guesswork out of FMCG marketing, branding and product promotion, and can even help take your rural marketing strategies to new heights!

On this subject, it is important to note that rural marketing is an essential component of taking any product to market. With a large proportion of the world's population residing in rural areas, regional communities make up a significant portion of the global consumer marketplace.

By neglecting rural marketing, product manufacturers could be missing out on a huge chunk of consumers to whom they could be selling their goods. As such, marketing to rural and regional populations is a crucial element of any holistic marketing strategy.

The differences: How does rural marketing vary from other forms of marketing?

Marketing to rural audiences and communities in many ways, differs a great deal from marketing to metropolitan populations. Importantly, rural marketing requires a much more personalised, tailored, and community-focused approach.

This means being even more people-focused and customer-centric than usual! It also means understanding the core values, ideals, and principles of the rural communities you are targeting. What do these people consider to be important? What do these types of consumers look for in the products and goods they consume? And how do rural customers' needs differ from those of metropolitan audiences?

Needless to say, the answers to these questions can only be uncovered by conducting market research into the specific community you are planning to target with your rural marketing strategy! For this to work, having a sound understanding of your rural audience, who they are, and what they value, from a grassroots perspective, is key to executing a successful rural marketing campaign.

It is important to note here that each rural community has different priorities, values, and areas of interest. For this reason, your rural marketing strategy needs to be tailored to each regional location and community specifically.

As well as this, disseminating your marketing campaign to your rural audience needs to be tailored to the communication methods that particular demographic most commonly engages with. Is it social media, a locally-based online forum or an online community group, or is it the local paper or radio station?

Having an understanding of the communication channels you need to use to reach that specific rural audience is key. As well as this, you also need to understand the value of word-of-mouth promotion within a close-knit rural community. It is, then, a good idea to focus on spreading positive, first hand customer reviews of your product, as well as fostering solid relationships with your rural customers.

The positives: What are the benefits of rural marketing?

Essentially, engaging in rural marketing enables product manufacturers and distributors to reach sections of the global marketplace they ordinarily may not. By targeting rural audiences, a product's market niche is also expanded to wider corners of the population.

Rural marketing also allows businesses to build closer relationships with their customers, and to more closely observe the impact their product is having on that particular portion of the global market!

Importantly, rural populations should not be overlooked in terms of their buying power. This is especially true if you are manufacturing or distributing agricultural or FMCG products that are of particular interest to certain rural communities.

Indeed, if you choose not to market to this particular section of the global population, you could be missing out on a great deal of earning potential! In terms of supply and demand, and depending on your product or service offering, your rural audiences may even evolve into some of your largest groups of consumers.

As such, it is essential to develop a strategic rural marketing campaign - especially if you want to put your product on the regional map, so to speak!

Rural marketing is an essential component of any holistic marketing campaign. As a product manufacturer or distributor - particularly in the agricultural or FMCG sectors - it is critical not to overlook rural audiences. By tapping into the rural marketplace, you could well build up a flourishing community of regional consumers. It is, quite simply, an opportunity that could prove far too fruitful to be missed!