Rural India: India’s Untapped Market

When I was younger I frequently asked myself “What do you see?” as I stood in front of the bathroom mirror. My reply was always the same, “I see potential.”

Recently my mom asked me, “What is the one thing you fear most in life?”

I paused and looked at my bathroom door, and said, “Not living up to my own potential.”

Then I asked her, “Do you know why I love working in Rural India?”

I said, “I see untapped potential, untapped markets. That reminded me of a book I had recently read called, Jugaad Innovation, which supports my pre-existing thoughts and ideas on untapped markets.

‘Jugaad Innovation’ introduced me to other developing countries such as Brazil, China, Mexico, Kenya, Indonesia tapping into their rural market. It talked about the lessons the West can learn from developing countries using frugal yet efficient techniques to solve problems.

For instance, The West spends a lot of money on R&D, whereas in developing countries such as India, Brazil, Indonesia employ different techniques to design products for the untapped markets.

Nokia for example sent a group of ethnographers to study migrant workers in Indian Slums, the shanty towns of Ghana, the ‘Favela’s of Brazil to understand the latent needs of the consumer.

On their quest, the team learned that truck drivers in Asia and Africa needed to change tires at night hence needed a strong flashlight.Then in 2003 when Nokia finally decided to launch its product it was a massive hit,selling more than 250 millions units worldwide, making it the best selling phone on the planet.

Now that’s what I call potential! That’s why I want to work in rural India

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