Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL) has attained the mark of 50 lakh sales cumulatively in rural markets. With over 1,700 customized outlets in rural parts of the country, the Company was first to believe in the potential of upcountry markets. Today, reaping the benefits, nearly 40% of the total MSIL sales come from rural markets.
Speaking on the success, Mr. Shashank Srivastava, Senior Executive Director (Marketing & Sales), Maruti Suzuki India Limited, said, “Rural markets have a very special place in our business. Over the years, we have carefully studied the needs of this segment. While the aspirations of upcountry customer are very similar to those at metros, they demand more attention and care. We adopted the philosophy of ‘Go Local’ with 12,500 specially trained dealership personnel called Resident Dealer Sales Executives (RDSE), who understand the local culture and traditions to fulfill the expectation of these customers."
He added, “In 2008, MSIL strengthened its strategy with a focused and structured approach towards the rural hinterland, which was least affected by the global financial crisis then. We built on the network with the aim of ‘Ghar Ghar Mein Maruti’ (Maruti in every household) to tap the immense potential in rural India. To engage deeper, we designed various local-level engagement initiatives. We are proud to announce that with the support from our customers and local dealer partners, we have achieved 50 Lakh sales in rural India cumulatively. We remain committed to deliver products and services that match the customer needs in rural India.”
To align with the changing aspirations of the rural customer, recently the Company has also introduced NEXA, Maruti Suzuki’s premium channel in upcountry markets.
Strategic areas of intervention to gain a foothold in rural markets include:
a) Largest Rural network:
MSIL’s largest rural network helps in reaching the diverse regions of India and provides the showroom experience, touch & feel of the vehicle to the rural customer.
Over and above the sales experience, the Company has set up more than 4000 service touchpoints which include 235 ‘Service-on-Wheels’ to provide after-sales support to the customers.
b) Resident Dealer Sales Executive (RDSE):
RDSEs are specially trained to understand the need of local customers, maintain interpersonal relationships with customers and educate them about our latest offerings. These RDSEs not only help MSIL to reach rural customers but also play an important role in `understanding markets’ and `deeper reach to build new customers.’
c) Campaigns for Rural India:
MSIL has been designing print and digital communication in vernacular languages to communicate better with the customers. The brand has also been reinforcing campaigns for multiple customer engagement activities like Gramin Mahotsav, entertainment, competitions, new model unveiling, product displays, mega car delivery functions, and various cultural programs