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We have ushered in a "poor marketing era". The main consumers of this era are the poor people in the middle of the pyramid: they have a lot of income, but they have limited disposable income, they have limited disposable income and a strong desire to consume. This almost paradoxical form of consumption requires marketers and marketing researchers to come up with targeted "poor marketing" strategies.
Common sense tells us that in the pyramid of consumers, the top is the rich, the bottom is the poor, and the two are the middle class of all the business dream. They are large in number, abundant in income and prefer to consume, which is the ideal customer image. But for the people in the middle of the pyramid and their marketing strategies, marketers are vastly different and even contradictory in their judgments.
Michael Silverstein of the Boston consulting firm, with its 25-year consultancy study and experience, suggests that the consumer market is polarized, with both high-end and low-end markets growing fast, while the midrange market in the middle of the pyramid has declined. Their example is: Home appliance industry, Sony is deep in the "middle of the dilemma", and its rival LG started from the low end, has now spread to the poles; in the food industry, the middle-ranking Kraft is squeezed by rivals from both sides; the auto industry, General Motors stuck, and Toyota at both ends of the line ( To Lexus and Toyota different brands), successful victory ...
Paul Nunes, a senior researcher at Accenture's High Performance Enterprise Research Institute, and Blaine Johnson, a senior research analyst at Bernstein, used their methods to study the same American market, but came to the opposite conclusion Silverstein. They believe that the people in the middle of the pyramid are wealthy masses with a high disposable income that they can pay for a variety of goods at a higher price. Therefore, they propose to locate the new zone between the luxury and mass markets (that is, the midrange zone). Their case is the introduction of the Christie's clean white tooth paste and the quick clean mop. These two new products are expensive, but they soon created two large industries, nearly 1 billion dollars, in just a few short years.
Silverstein and Nunes are the same market in the middle of the pyramid, but why do they come to the opposite conclusion? are the people in the middle of the pyramid a rich crowd or a poor crowd?
We might as well take a look at the opinion of the former Research Institute. The middle class has disappeared and has continued to be at the bottom of the pyramid, the Japanese figure suggests. Japan's society has become a highly polarized m-shaped. Obviously, in his view, the middle of the pyramid is no longer there, leaving only the top and bottom.
Finally, the founder and consultant Master of the core competence theory prahalad the idea of exploiting the wealth at the bottom of the pyramid. He believes that the company has been neglected by the bottom of the pyramid is a huge wealth, the need for enterprises to use new thinking to deal with. Prahalad mainly in India and other developing countries as an example. This view is valuable, but unfortunately, he has China, India, Mexico and other countries as the overall pyramid of the bottom of the market, and in fact, there are different levels of pyramid in these countries.
So who is right about the idea? Is there a need for marketers and how to develop marketing strategies for the central pyramid market?
In fact, the experts ' arguments are reasonable, the reason for inconsistency and even contradictions is that the customer groups they are targeting are increasingly showing a paradoxical form of consumption. In addition, their conclusions are based on the markets of the United States, Japan and (mainly) India and other countries. The reality of these countries ' markets and China are both convergent and divergent. If we want to clarify our own problems and find a solution, we should focus our attention on the middle of the pyramid in the Chinese market first. Because China is a market that is both macro-and global market-driven, and very Chinese characteristics (the following wording, if not specifically, the middle of the pyramid are specifically the Chinese market).
The "poor" in the middle of the pyramid
The first thing to be sure is that the pyramid of the Chinese consumer market is definitely growing in terms of nominal income, because China's economic development is obvious to all. According to statistics released by the National Bureau of Statistics, the first half of 2009, the country's urban residents per capita disposable income growth of 11.2%, rural residents per capita disposable income growth of 8.1%, the increase is more than GDP, urban-rural gap widened, growth rate higher than last year. But given the possible moisture in the data, the offsetting effects of CPI growth, and the benefits of social and economic development being more occupied by the super rich at the top of the pyramid, we can basically judge that, although in terms of nominal income, the middle of the pyramid can be summed up as Paul? Nunes said, "The affluent masses "But they are not really rich.
Of course, our judgment is not the same as that of the former one. The middle class, which is not rich, still exists and does not fall to the bottom of the pyramid. In other words, China's society is not what it was called Japan-type M society.
We may as well put down the rational analysis first, to see a perceptual material. Hit TV series "Dwelling" in the Guo Haiping is a typical representative of the middle of the pyramid, her line in the play vividly shows the middle of the pyramid "poor" survival Status:
Open your eyes every day, there is a string of numbers out of my mind: mortgage 6,000, Morandia 2,500, slowly on kindergarten 1500, human relations between 600, transportation 580, property management fees Three hundred or four hundred, mobile phone charges 250, and gas and electricity costs 200. That is to say, from the first breath I wake up, I get at least 400 a day, at least ... This is the cost of living in this city. These figures force me to not slack off for a day, and it's too late to think about the next ten years.
According to Guo Haiping's data, the couple's one-month income totals to $12,000 to make ends meet. And from the current domestic income, monthly personal income of 6000 yuan should belong to the upper-middle. In terms of this income alone, Guo Haiping can no longer be included in the poverty category (bottom of the pyramid).
In fact, the people of the central pyramid, represented by Guo Haiping, are still mired in struggling economic state despite their very expensive income. One of the most important reasons for this is that some of the most rigid long-term, continuous, large (or even huge) expenditures grab a large chunk of their income, reducing the amount of disposable income left to them. Among them, the most typical is the purchase of disposable income to the maximum crowding out.
Overall, the increase in disposable income of urban residents is far behind the growth rate of housing prices. Moreover, these glamorous "poor" people, in addition to carrying the weight of the house, there are other burdens, such as car-related expenses, medical costs, children's education costs, as well as the elderly spending.
These inflexible spending, "successfully" squeezed the middle class in the middle of the pyramid into the "poor".
"Poor" is not limited to "poor consumption"
However, although this group of "debt" difficult, "poor" unspeakable, but they are not willing to "poor happy", "poor consumption."
There are at least two reasons for this.
First, the pursuit of consumer excellence is human nature. This is true even in the real sense of the poor at the bottom of the pyramid.
Foreign readers write that Brazil divides its residents into a, B, C, D, E five basic economic classes. Of these, C, D and E are considered to be the bottom of the pyramid. By 2002, Brazil had a population of 176 million, of which 84% were poor at the bottom. Many of these poor families lack basic amenities or appliances such as toilets and telephones, but the prevalence of luxury appliances such as televisions and refrigerators is high. This is because Brazil is a tropical climate and it is necessary to have a fridge. For the poor in Brazil, watching TV is also an important form of entertainment. So, despite the costly of TV refrigerators, poor people are happy to buy first.
By extension, the "poor" in the middle of the pyramid to the optimal consumption needs can be imagined.
Second, this group in the middle of the pyramid is the backbone of the whole society. They have a decent job, in the high-rise buildings and access, more or less a professional sense of superiority. And in order to stick together to maintain such a sense of superiority, they must pay more attention to packaging, maintain their own explicit consumption levels and consumption grade. It also keeps their consumer demand buoyant. In fact, this group is the most important consumer subject in the whole society.
But strong consumer demand needs to be supported by sufficient disposable income. As mentioned earlier, the disposable income of this group has been almost drained and drained. So what gives them the possibility and ability to consume?
The answer is that they have strengthened their discretionary liabilities in various ways and strengthened their spending power through discretionary debt. There are roughly three sources of disposable liabilities.
First, the squeezing effect. The squeeze refers to the squeeze (most often parents) of people in the middle of the pyramid who are involved in consumption. Those who are involved are often at the bottom of the pyramid. For example, many urban white-collar workers who belong to the "poor" group in this paper often need parental assistance to pay the first payment when buying a house. Because of their own income, it is difficult to afford up to hundreds of thousands of yuan or even millions of dollars in the first payment. And parents take out the money to support their children's homes, often for years they have accumulated the endowment money. In addition, the emergence of more and more old-age families also fully illustrates the existence of this squeeze effect. This part of the squeeze on other groups of money, to a large extent, to hedge the central group's lack of consumption capacity.
Second, credit card overdraft. Through credit card overdraft can effectively delay the payment time limit, so that the middle group has a longer time to accumulate consumption capacity, but can be consumed in advance.
Third, the merchant's installment plan. Such an approach would be tantamount to dividing large amounts of consumer spending into more easily affordable multiple small payments. This can also effectively enhance the Central group's consumer confidence and consumption capacity.
But although the central group's desire for high-end products and even luxury goods is strong, and although they can increase their disposable income by squeezing the effect, overdraft, installment and other disposable liabilities, there is a limit to such reinforcement. The group in the middle of the pyramid will never be as profligate as the real rich at the top of the pyramid, enjoying the top brands in every single item of life. The middle Pyramid group can only use alternative consumption in other ways after struggling to consume one or several luxuries.
This is the most distinctive feature of this group, the "poor marketing" for this group must be based on this.
Poor marketing for the poor
Michael, Silverstein and others define the image of two typical middle-class poor people.
She is a white-collar worker who pays 150,000 dollars a salary. She buys a 19-dollar pair of jeans at Target supermarket, rides on a AirTran flight from a cheap airline, and spends a hefty Niemannmax on shoes at a high-end department store, or even a 50-mile trek to luxury brand coach ( Coach) shop to buy a handbag, and then spend 100 dollars to pet dog beauty.
He is a middle-class plumber with a 50,000 dollar salary, who spends 27,000 of dollars renting a * * * car, never eating out, and buying clothes at the community chain store, Cole (Kohl).
The two are Silverstein from a group of customers surveyed by the Boston consulting firm for decades, and thus highly representative, consistent with the realities of the United States and, to a greater extent, China's consumption situation.
In a word, the "poor" groups in the middle of the pyramid show obvious mixed-mix consumption patterns of the canine difference. In their consumption structure, both high-end luxury consumption, but also low-end low-cost consumption. This situation is ultimately determined by their ability to consume. In spite of the fact, the Chinese have a very good face that makes them reluctant to show their uneven consumption mix and consumer goods (or, more precisely, they don't want people outside the intimate circle to know). They can accept the use of alternative brands and even fakes, but the premise must be to ensure that the genuine.
The alternative consumption of "poor people" has roughly four categories:
First, discount consumption. Buy or wait for major department stores and major brands to purchase at discount outlets such as Auschwitz. In this way, we can enjoy the premium brands in the permissible degree of consumption ability.
Second, buy fakes and hope for the genuine. This is the real reason for the popularity of fakes for luxury brands. This is evidenced by Louis Vuitton's high-profile crackdown around the world, including China, of course. In addition, the fakes here include authentic goods smuggled into the country.
Third, the purchase of cottage products. This is the second grade of the genuine.
Four, the net buys. It has become a consensus that the same products are cheaper to sell online. And the rapid expansion of the scale of online shopping has no need to say much.
Because the "poor state" of the central pyramid will continue for a long time, so the above four types of consumption will also be maintained during this period of hot.
Business marketing can be combined with the above four types of alternative consumption to be used. In addition, businesses can also adopt a "weak brand" strategy. This is due to the special "poor group" of the psychological characteristics of the ad hoc. This group has a strong consumer self-esteem, if he (she) has enough spending power, he (she) must be evenly quality of consumption. But the reality is, when it bought a genuine LV handbag, but did not have the ability to buy a name table. Therefore, he can only adopt the mixed-style alternative consumption. And in implementing such alternatives, he was not willing to see through the two-pole mix strategy. This provides the possibility of a "weak brand" strategy.
The so-called "weak brand" strategy, is not according to traditional thinking, strongly strengthen their own brands, want to show up in all places, but low-key act, even to make people recognize the brand. The other side of the "weak brand" is "strong quality". In other words, to make this "weak brand" quality enough to match the real top brands. In this way, the consumer's blending strategy will tend to be perfect. "Weak brand" because of its low-key concealment, will never give real name-brand chaos, pull down its worth; Strong quality "reveals the quality and matches the true brand. Such a strategy should be able to meet the "poor" in the middle of the pyramid of the subtle psychological success.
In fact, we have ushered in a "poor marketing era." The main consumers of this era are the poor people in the middle of the pyramid: they have a lot of income and limited disposable income, and they have limited disposable income and a strong desire to consume. This almost paradoxical form of consumption requires marketers and marketing researchers to come up with targeted marketing initiatives. As a result, businesses should take into account their alternative consumer needs, and be innovative and creative, based on innovative ways to help their "poor customers" to provide discretionary debt or payment methods.
In short, the poor marketing era has an infinite charm, "poor marketing" at the time, while the marketing innovation, there is endless possibility. Hope that in this special period of business and marketers, "poor" is thinking, with their talent and wisdom, to create a new "poor marketing" era.
When I began to study "poor marketing", the concept of "cock silk" has not yet appeared on the Internet. From the point of view of marketing strategy, this kind of self-deprecating salutation can be understood as a secular description of the unique group, which has a lot of disposable income and little discretionary income. However, now, combining the word "cock silk" to look at this article, you will find that this is a "cock silk marketing Manifesto", very accurate description of the Cock Silk group consumption face, and gave a very targeted marketing strategy.
Obviously, the cock silk cannot disappear overnight, the poor marketing time also will have the bright prospects.
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