Friday, 1 June 2012

Study on Durable Goods and Brands

Study of on Durable Goods and Brands: A Study of Chennai College Students About Their Familial Preferences

 G.Suryanarayana Reddy and P. Govinda Reddy (2001)
  UGC Minor Research Project

            Data regarding familial preferences about durable goods and brands have been collected from 300 students belonging to different colleges in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India in the year 1999. The data pertaining to the ownership pattern of Motor Car, Air Conditioner, Micro-oven, Cell/Mobile phone, Personal Computer and Washing Machine among the families of these 300 students have been analysed.  The findings of the study are as follows:

Durable Goods:

Motor cars
35 percent of the respondents owned motor cars.  The best discriminator of the ownership of motor cars is family income greater than five lakh rupees.  79 percent of this group own motor cars.  The next best discriminator for the ownership of motor cars is religious affiliation as Christians.  56 percent of Christians in the sample own motor cars.  The next important discriminator is professional women as 52 percent of them own cars.

Air conditioners
23.3 percent of the sample respondents own air-conditioners.  The best discriminator for the ownership of air-conditioners is family income being greater than 5 lakh rupees. 57 percent of the respondents in this income group own air-conditioners.  The next best discriminator is professional women of whom 40 percent own air-conditioners.

Micro ovens
            14 percent of the respondents own micro-ovens.  The best discriminator for the ownership of micro-ovens is religious affiliation as Christians.  29 percent of Christian respondents own micro-ovens. The next best discriminator is professional women.  26 percent of the professional women own micro-ovens.  Income effect is found to be negligible in the ownership of micro-oven.

Cell/Mobile phones
            Among the products that have been selected in this work, cell/mobile phones are least owned at that point of time.  Only 13.3 percent of the respondents owned cell/mobile phones.  The best discriminator for this product is religious affiliation as Muslims.  27 percent of the Muslim respondents own cell/mobile phones.  The next best discriminators are family income being greater than 5 lakh rupees and professional women.  26.2 percent of  the respondents with family income greater than 5 lakh rupees and 26 percent of professional women respectively own cell/mobile phones.

Personal Computers
            27 percent of the respondents own personal computer.  The best discriminators for this product are family income grater than 5 lakh rupees and family income between 3 to 5 lakh rupees.  43 percent and 38 percent of the respondents in these groups respectively own the personal computers.  37 percent of the professional women own personal computers. 33 percent of the respondents with vegetarian food habits own personal computers.

Washing Machines
            Among the products that have been considered for this survey, washing machine is the most popular product.  56.7 percent of the sample own washing machines.  The most important discriminators for the ownership of washing machines are occupation of mother as service, religious affiliation as Christians and income between 3 to 5 lakh rupees.  75 percent of the respondents in each of these groups respectively own washing machines.  There is negative income effect for the ownership of washing machine for the group with income greater than 5 lakh rupees.  Only 71.4 percent of this group own washing machines.


Brand selection of Durable Goods:

Motor cars
The motor cars have been classified into three varieties on the basis of the internal space available in the car.  Compact car Brand (Maruti- 800, Zen, Santro, Fiat Uno and Tata Indica), Mid-size car Brand (Premier Padmini, Ambassador, Fiat Sienna) and Luxury car brands (Tata Sierra, Tata Safari, Ciello and Maruti Omni).  This classification has no relationship to the price of the car. 
45.1 percent of business men own mid-sized cars while 43.5 percent of professionals own compact cars.  Men in service are equally divided with 35.5 percent own compact cars and another 35.3 percent own mid-sized cars.  Professional men seem to be more fond of compact cars, while business men seem to be more fond of mid-sized cars.
 39 percent of house wives own mid-sized cars while 42.8 percent of professional women have mid-sized cars.  Very few women in service own cars.  
44.4 percent of Christians own mid-sized cars while 40.8 percent of Hindus own mid-sized cars. 
43 percent of non-vegetarian respondents own mid-sized cars while 42.1 percent of the respondents with vegetarian diet own mid-sized cars. 
48.5 percent of respondents with income greater than 5 lakh rupees own mid-sized cars.  The respondents with income 3-5 lakh rupees and with income 2-3 lakh rupees are alike with 41.4 percent in each group own compact cars. 57.1 percent of respondents with income less than 2 lakhs prefer mid-sized cars.  In the income range of 2 to 5 lakh rupees compact cars seem to be popular.  For others midsized cars seem to be popular.
Air conditioners
The brands for air conditioners are classified as Amtrex, Hitachi, Godrej and others in this study.
Among professional women, Godrej brand of air-conditioners seem to be popular as 27.3 percent of them opt for it.  Among other categories significant brand differences is not seen.
42.8 percent of Muslims use Godrej air-conditioners while 26.7 percent of Christian respondents have Godrej air conditioners. Significant brand preference of air conditioners is not seen among the Hindus.
33.3 percent of vegetarian respondents own Godrej air conditioners while 14.6 percent of respondents with non-vegetarian food habits have Godrej brand of air conditioners.  Air conditioner brands selections are not affected by food habits.
72.7 percent of the lowest income group respondents own less popular brands or assembled air conditioners.  Income group between 2-3 lakhs is also similar with 79 percent of them buying popular brands or assembled sets.  The respondents with income greater than 5 lakhs are also opting for less known brands or assembled units to the extent of 67 percent.  Only the respondents belonging to 3-5 lakhs seem to go far brands.  21 percent of them are having Godrej brand of air conditioners.
Micro ovens
The brands for micro ovens are classified as; Philips, Kenstar, BPL and others.
66.6 percent of men in service go for Kenstar brand of micro ovens.  42.1 percent of businessmen using micro ovens have BPL brand.  33.4 percent of professional men have micro ovens with BPL brand.  People in service are cautious.  They are more interested in savings and riskless investments.  Occasionally when they decide to purchase luxurious products, they opt for well known brands or proven brands from the experience of their own colleagues whom they can trust.  Cautiousness may be emanating due to lack of self confidence in them.  On the other hand businessmen and professional tend to be more self confident and so opt for risky decisions.  Their own convictions are more important than experiences of their friends and colleagues.  More variability has been noticed for businessmen and professional men in choosing the brands of micro ovens.  It looks like they are more individualistic.
60 percent of women in service go for Kenstar brand of micro ovens while 42.8 percent of professional women go far BPL brand of micro ovens.  Micro oven may be considered as women’s product.  In many households, the decision makers are the women in the house.  Variability for the house wife seems to be higher than that of other groups.  Housewives represent leisure class more than other groups.  They have time to socialize more.  They meet different people and shop around more.  They are exposed to variety of information about different bands.  This may give rise to more variability in their brand selections.
Cell/Mobile phones
The brands for cell/mobile are classified as; Skycell, Ericson, Nokia and others.
Nokia seem to be popular across all income groups.  62.5 percent of professional men, who use cell phones, have Nokia brand.  The corresponding percentage for men in service and business men is 50%.
Occupation of father does not seem to have any effect on cell phone brand selection.
57.1 percent of professional women who have cell phones are using Nokia brand.  51.7 percent of house wives own cell phones of Nokia brand. Only two respondents whose mothers are in service and who are using cell phones are using Ericson brand.
52 percent of Hindu respondents who use cell phones use the brand of Nokia.  The corresponding figures for Muslims and Christians are 50 percent and 37.5 percent respectively.  There is no effect of religious affiliation on band selection.
48.6 percent of non vegetarian respondents having cell phones use Nokia brand while 40 percent of the vegetarian respondents use Nokia brand.   No effect of food habits is seen on cell phone brand selection.
Popular brand across all income groups appear to be Nokia. 45.5% of respondents with income greater than 5 lakhs who cell phones have Nokia brand.  The figures for the other income groups (3-5 lakhs, 2-3 lakhs and less than 2 lakhs) is 50 percent, 50 percent and 40 percent respectively.  There is no income effect on brand selection of cell phones.
Personal Computers
The brands for personal computers are classifies as; HCL, H.P, Compaq, IBM, assembled and others.
61.9 percent of men in service having computers have assembled personal computers, while the percentage of business men buying assembled personal computers is 50 percent. 
53 percent of house wives, who have computers, have assembled computers.  46.1% of women in service have assembled personal computers while he number for professional women it is 20 percent.
52.5 percent of Hindu respondents who have computers have assembled sets.  40 percent of Muslims have assembled sets.  26.8 percent of Christians have Compaq brand of computers.
48.1 percent of respondents with vegetarian food habits and 46.6 percent of respondents with non vegetarian food habits are having assembled personal computers.  There is no effect of food habits on the selection of personal computers.
44.4 percent of respondents with income greater than 5 lakhs of rupees have assembled personal computers.  56.6 percent of the respondents with income between 3-5 lakh rupees own assembled personal computers.  42.9 percent of respondents with income between 2-3 lakhs of rupees and 31.6 percent of respondents with less than 2 lakhs of rupees income go for assembled personal computers.  There is no income effect on the selection of personal computer brands.
Washing Machines
The brands for washing machines are classified as; Whirlpool, BPL, Videocon and others.
38.5 percent of men in service who own washing machines are using Videocon brand while 37 percent of professional men own washing machines are using Videocon brand.  Professional men seem to like BPL brand next to Videocon brand of washing machines.  Men in service also give second preference to BPL brand of washing machines.  Business men do not seem to be uniform in their brand selection.  They almost equally like whirlpool, BPL and Videocon of washing machines.   Many of them (33.3%) are using other brands.  Professional men and men in service prefer Videocon washing machine significantly more than business men.  Less variance is seen among professionals and in service persons compared to businessmen on washing machine brand selection.   This may be due to the fact that professional and service people often meet together and discuss about what brands are the best in the market.  This social communication may be the reason for the low variance.  Business men may be working more independently and they may meet very few businessmen and they may not discuss brand selection topics among them.
43.8 percent of professional women who own washing machines are having BPL brand washing machines.  42.4 percent of women in service using washing machines are having Videocon washing machines.   26.6 percent of housewives having washing machines own Videocon washing machines.  Variability in brand selection seems to be highest among housewives.  Women in service prefer Videocon washing machine more significantly in comparison to housewives.  Housewives seem to be more variant in their brand selection.    They have got more free time.  They may not simply follow opinion leaders.  They may meet more opinion leaders and finally use their own discretion.  Women in service do not have much time for brand selection.  They just follow an opinion leader’s service, in their brand selection, without any analytical processing.
33.6 percent of Hindus owning washing machines are having Videocon washing machines.  30.55 percent of Christians and 30.8 percent of Muslims who are having washing machines are respectively having BPL brand of washing machines.
35 percent of the respondents with vegetarian food habits, who are using washing machines are having Videocon brand of washing machines.  27.7 percent of respondents with non vegetarian food habits own Videocon washing machines. 23.1 percent of respondents with non vegetarian food habits have BPL brand of washing machines.  Vegetarians and non vegetarians do not differ significantly on preference towards Videocon washing machines.
30 percent of the respondents with income greater than 5 lakhs of rupees, who are using washing machines are having Videocon brand of washing machines.  28.9 percent of the respondents with income in the range of 3-5 laks are having BPL brand of washing machines.  27 percent of the respondents with income in between 2-3 lakhs of rupees and 34.9 percent of the respondents with income less than 2 lakhs of rupees have Videocon brand of washing machines.  The income groups from 3 to 5 lakhs of rupees seem to differ from other income groups in that it mostly prefer s BPL brand.  Income effect does not seem to be operating on brand choice.

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