New India. New Perspective. New Lens in TGI India

23 Jun,2015


By Deepa Mathew


Deepa Mathew

Target Group Index (TGI) is a single-source, global continuous database providing valuable and comparable consumer insights from over 60 countries across five continents. In addition to consumption behaviour and demographics, TGI also understands the consumers’ changing attitude, values, lifestyle, as well as media consumption, making it one of the most comprehensive encyclopedias to decode the urban Indian consumer.


TGI India covers an annual sample size of 40,000 SEC ABC Urban Consumers across more than 190 towns. The comprehensive information coverage extends across 17 sectors, 400 product categories, 4,000 brands and 250 attitudinal statements.



Hemant Mehta, Senior VP, IMRB International

It took us time to establish Target Group Index. Fifteen years back, people were not ready for the product, and there were very few agencies and clients who were buying. Today, it has become an integral part of the marketing decision-making process. When we started, we used to do a study once every two years and today, we do a study twice a year. We started out by only measuring the key markets, which is one-lakh-plus towns. Today, we go all urban, so that shows that there is a need which the industry clearly has for the product, the fact that we’ve got clients who are using it and looking at updates twice a year, just speaks for itself. It’s come a long way, the country has changed and we have changed, but we try to keep pace with the expectations of clients, giving them more frequent information and larger-scope coverage. Today we cover about 42,000 consumers every year. Also, so far we had not been covering the North East, but now entering Assam. Not just Guwahati, but even the rest of the state.


Between 2008 and 2014, household spends, that share of wallet itself, has changed. Today, we are mirroring a developed Western economy, where less than 40 per cent of the household budget is being spent on food and grocery, and 60 per cent on everything else, like commuting, education, children, services etc. That itself shows how much the country has changed. And keeping pace with that, in every round of TGI, there are additional requirements which are added. This year we’ve added six new categories. Even the way we are shopping has changed, and we’ve gone straight to online. The interesting thing is while some brands have not reached certain markets, consumers have reached out to those brands and e-commerce is playing a big role. Suddenly e-commerce is changing the expectations and behaviour which is going to have a profound impact on the way we distribute brands and make them available.


Geoff Wicken, Head of TGI International, Kantar Media

A lot depends depends on how companies organise themselves. And it’s really a question of how dynamic and big the businesses are in the local markets. In many cases, you’d say that international businesses have a certain amount of sizing the local markets; that’s how they became international. But generally speaking, with the exception of a small number of cases, international companies do tend to devote their decisions about research buying to local operations. The sheer speed with which things are changing [is remarkable]. If you can look at the GDP growth over the last 15 years and that plays through in TGI, for just about any product category, you see a higher percentage of growth, a more rapid growth in India than pretty much anywhere else. China is obviously a place that’s been growing fast as well.


E-commerce is evolving in a different way here because of the difference in retail distribution. In more developed markets, it becomes an overlay on what’s already there. [In markets like India or in Africa] there hasn’t been an infrastructure of fixed telephony or even classic online internet access. What mobile brings, is the ability for people to leapfrog two levels.


As told to Dyanne Coelho


What’s New in TGI 2015

  • Aligning to the new 2011 Census definitions
  • First comprehensive understanding of North Eastern consumers with the additional inclusion of a 660-size sample
  • Reporting on the new SEC system
  • Coverage of new, emerging categories – Green tea, olive oil, anti-acne creams, CC/BB creams, lipcare, toners and astringents
  • Comprehensive coverage on the digital behavior of consumers, e-commerce, m-commerce and shopping behavior
  • Life-stage segmentation for efficient targeting


New India. New Perspective. New Lens – Key Themes

1. Geographic Redefinition

With more towns acquiring the status of metros, population shifts in this strata have increased consumerism as well as diversities in consumption patterns. Each big city is now heterogeneous, owing to the multitude of markets and sub-cultures it houses. The phenomenon of cities within cities generates opportunities, as well as challenges for marketers to micro-target their offerings to distinct markets and sub-groups. Increase in Census towns, owing to proximity to big cities and a shift of industries to small towns, have led to a continuum of the urban and rural. Product adoption is equally fast in the rural areas as a result of this.


2. Household Redefinition

There has been a 22 per cent decrease in the number of households without elderly in the last nine years, giving rise to two new target groups: the empty nesters and households with less dependency. There is also an increase in dual-member earning households with a 30 per cent rise in working women in the last 15 years.


The implications of this, therefore, are that there are new consumer classes with the power to spend on their distinct needs, women-centric products, products and services targeted towards the elderly, increasing spends on children, etc. Meanwhile, the share of expenditure on education has more than doubled in the last five years.


3. Consumer Redefinition

  • Need for brands to be omnipresent online and offline, given the increasing power of the internet and social media??


The consumer today is outdoors more often and offline for longer (40 per cent increase in time spent out of home and 12 hours of average internet usage per month) as compared to three hours in 2003). With the internet providing access to everything s/he needs — search, watch, transact, consumers are practically living in a home-away-from-home. Brands need to be present both offline as well as online, and always present; not just when there’s a campaign or when they have something to sell??.


  • Changing influencer profile again because of the power of social media

There are shorter attention spans but increasing influence due to the power of social media. As many as 45 per cent [of consumers] turn to the internet when they need information on anything. They feel empowered when they are equipped with information and reviews from likeminded people. Hence, they are more likely to experiment and take calculated risks. There has been a 21 per cent increase in those who have claimed to take risks in the last 10-11 years. Brands and marketers should recognise the changing profile of influencers and advocators, and target their communication towards them. The messaging should be short and succinct, but have a ‘talkability’ element to last longer and spread wider



  • Affordable Luxury

With more disposable income and an increase in the power to spend and information available at one’s fingertips, aspirations are on the rise. Consumers today will go the extra mile to get what they want. Credit is no longer a dirty word, with the percentage of those who do not like being in debt declining from 70 per cent to 52 per cent in the last 10 years. Affordable luxury is the order of the day. For the marketer today, the thrust would be, not on creating products and services restricted by budgetary constraints, but that of making high-end premium products available to consumers through various options of packaging, financing etc.


Category usage is not restricted to needs any more. Consumers today buy in to categories not because they need them, but because they want them. The other implication for a marketer would be to move from ‘need identification’ to ‘need creation’. ‘Tell me the reason why’ instead of ‘Tell me what to buy’ is the new-age consumer mantra



4. Category Redefinition

With the landscape changing, categories are also being replaced faster. Mobiles have replaced a lot of erstwhile categories like radio, camera, digital diary etc. On the other hand, a broad-based category gives way to multiple sub-categories with focused special benefits like face creams giving way to anti-ageing, anti-blemish and anti-acne lotions or creams. Watching out for category redundancies is something a marketer should be cognizant of in today’s changing times.


The TGI studies sit at the forefront of the media and marketing industries, providing comprehensive insight into the online and offline behaviour of consumers. Today, TGI in India is more widely used than ever, to assist in the understanding of target markets and to aid marketing and advertising decisions.


Deepa Mathew is Group Business Director, Media & Retail, IMRB International


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