Dainik Bhaskar-Lumiere study showcases growing say of women in car purchase

From being in the periphery of major decision-making in the family, today women have become a key influencer and even take the lead. With growing income and availability of a wide range of automobiles across brands, a four-wheeler has become more of a necessity today. 

A study initiated by Dainik Bhaskar Group and conducted by Lumiere Business Solutions, a leading research and consulting firm, seeks to understand the role of women in the purchase of a 4-wheeler, identify what are the internal and external deciding factors around the purchase, and also study the media consumption and habits of consumers that lead to the purchase. 

The study is part of Dainik Bhaskar’s plans to create information pieces for advertisers, which will help attract and open their minds. The Group will initiate research in different information areas through multiple studies. 

The research was conducted in Ahmedabad and Jaipur through focus groups as well as interviewing couples. All respondents were taken from the segments NCCS A+, A1, A2 & B1, within the age groups of 25-35 years and 36-45 years, comprising women with careers as well as housewives. Respondents were a mix of intenders and buyers of 4-wheelers who read a newspaper at least 4 times a week. 

Key findings: 

  • The role of women has evolved over the years – from earlier, not being regarded as a participant in the purchase decision for an automobile, to now becoming a key influencer in the decision making process.
  • Over time there has been a definite shift in the role of women from merely celebrating the purchase of a car by the family, to being an important ‘Partner’ in the decision making.
  • This evolving role of women can be considered a key communications input to advertisers to design the advertising communications around purchase of an automobile by the family, keeping women at the centre of the communication.
  • The research reveals the different stages through which the woman of the house guides the purchase decision: when the woman becomes the Enabler, Validator and Partner in the core decision making of the purchase of a 4-wheeler.
  • While the men are the ‘financiers’ and may have more technical knowledge about automobiles, the women play an important participative role as a ‘sounding board’ across several parameters and actively leverages the internet to help in informed decision-making.
  • The research revealed that women keep themselves updated through internet which is the most used medium to seek information; and read various newspapers for main local news, updates about family, food and fashion; and key trends, mainly scanning through headlines due to paucity of time.
  • Women were also found to be the primary decision maker on household purchases up to Rs 5,000, including children’s education, grocery and domestic expenditures. However, they are playing a ‘participative’ and ‘supportive’ role in high value purchases like consumer durables, house, jewellery and 4-wheelers.

Commenting on the research, Satyajit Sengupta, Chief Corporate Sales and Marketing Officer, Dainik Bhaskar Group, said, “The research has revealed some important nuances of how the role of women continues to evolve as a key influencer in the decision making process of high value purchases made by a family, including an automobile. Gone are the times when women would not even be considered to express their opinions in important family or domestic decisions, and rather today, they are being seen to be playing a strong supportive role in every  choice being made within the family. This is a key take-away to be used in creating targetted communications for automobile and other high-value purchases which were earlier thought to be made by men. The women are the influencers who are backing final purchase decisions and hence cannot be ignored in any communication by corporate.” 

Deepa Soman, Managing Director, Lumière Business Solutions, added here, “An interesting observation of the research has been the changing mindset of women and their eagerness and enthusiasm in undertaking research in the form of information and deals around car purchase through the internet and other media, to support the husband’s decision towards final purchase. Women – whether housewives or professionals – are being seen to be proactively taking on more responsibility influencing the “right choice” aligned to the entire family’s needs. I believe, in a way, this signifies a certain ‘soft power’ that the family may not fully acknowledge but is definitely indispensible in the ultimate car purchase decision. For advertisers, this changing role and mindset can be a mine of information to be used and explored further.”

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