Acceptability Of The Quality Of Communication In Tvcs For The Target Market

Abstract

This research highlights a study based on finding out the quality of communication in television commercials and the acceptability of the target market of the food brands marketed by Engro and Nestle Pakistan towards them. It strives to discover the consumer response of male and female consumers to assess three indicators to evaluate the effectiveness of advertisements, namely; vocabulary, theme and the images represented in the local advertisements of food products marketed by two major companies, Engro and Nestle foods Pakistan, manufacturing and distributing famous brands in the country. Such practices of collecting post-screening feedback on advertisement are non-existent in Pakistan. The advertisements screened in the last 3 years on the leading local television channels were included in the study and the data was collected through a survey of 100 consumers/viewers in the leading shopping mall of Islamabad. The quantitative research method used for the survey was the ‘image and self-concept measurement': semantic differential scale. Interviews were also conducted from 20 participants and data was collected through Focus group and the Narrative technique. The findings will show the consumers impression about the products marketed in Pakistan and can consequently affect the marketing and sales of their products. The deliberation on the results highlighted the objectionable content in the communication of advertisements of the products in television commercials, on local TV channels in Pakistan and its impact on the consumers’ behavior of Engro and Nestle Food brands’ advertisements. It would help the advertisers to promote acceptable communication for their target market.

Keywords: Communicationtelevision Commercialsconsumer behavior

Introduction

This research highlights an investigation, based on finding out the quality of communication in television commercials and the acceptability of the target market of Engro and Nestle food brands in Pakistan towards them. It strives to discover the consumer response of male and female consumers to assess three indicators to evaluate the effectiveness of advertisements, namely: vocabulary, theme and the images represented that may appeal to the Pakistani consumers in the advertisements of major companies manufacturing and distributing famous brands in the country. Reynolds remarks on the importance of effective advertising for businesses:

A study reveals that tools for advertising help you attract the most attention to your business and reach the largest number of potentially new and returning customers. If necessary, employ a period of trial-and-error to judge the tools most effective in creating more business and, thus, higher profit (Reynolds, 2016).

Messages conforming to the specific cultural perspective of the target group make communication effective. Merriam Webster dictionary (n.d.) defines culture as the beliefs, customs, arts, etc., of a particular society, group, place, or time. As the basic building blocks of communication, words communicate meaning, but culture is the most important factor that influences the meanings of words. Culture gives meaning and provides the context for communication, and the ability to communicate allows us to act out our cultural values and to share our language and our culture (“Communication and Culture”, 2016).

Ideologically, Pakistan is an Islamic State. Pakistan’s very foundation centers around Islam, and Pakistani culture is primarily based on the Islamic way of life, all other cultural aspects are inspired by Islam. Pakistani culture is highlighted by its grandeur, simplicity, firm convictions and noble deeds and ideas (Ronaq, 2010).

In the Pakistani society traditionally, it would be a sensitive issue and a taboo to discuss gender related private/personal products, especially personal hygiene products. The advertizing companies need to work around a culture sensitive framework to make their ads culture appropriate for their urban consumers.

Problem Statement

Any kind of practices for collecting post-screening feedback on advertisement are non-existent in Pakistan. So a survey and interviews focused on the communication in the advertisements of the brands of Engro and Nestle Pakistan were conducted. The study strives to discover the consumer response to three indicators of evaluation to assess the efficacy of advertisements, namely, vocabulary, theme and the images represented that may appeal to the Pakistani consumers in the advertisements of major companies manufacturing and distributing famous food brands in Pakistan.

The specific feedback of the consumers on advertisements, regarding specific products, is virtually non-existent in Pakistan. The success of an advertisement is closely related to consumer behavior gauged not only by the increase in the sale of the product but also how the target market responds to the advertisement itself in a particular environment. The latter is what this research sets out to study, specifically, with reference to the consumer behavior towards the ads of products advertised in Pakistan, and its effect on their perceptions about the product. Status branding, brand attitude… self-concept and reference groups were found to have positive effects on female consumer buying behavior (Zeb, Rashid, & Javeed, 2011).

In a competitive environment…the firms that will survive will be those who research and understand their customers well---what values customers are seeking and how they judge and find those values in the market place. Thus, researching customer behavior is critical for marketing success (Sheth, Mittal, & Newman, 1998).

The dislike for product advertising may result in or initiate a negative opinion of the product as well, consequently affecting its sales and marketing. Hence, this research sets out to solve the problem of lack of communication between the consumers and the food brand manufacturers.

Research Questions

Thus, this research addresses the following broad questions:

  • What is the general distinctiveness of television commercials of food products in Pakistan?

  • What do the consumers think about the intolerability of these advertisements?

  • How do Engro Foods and Nestle Pakistan compare to each other in the tolerability or intolerability of their television commercials as gauged by their customers.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of the study was to find out if the television commercials are effective or not, and how effective they are, or how they are being received by the consumers of Nestle and Engro foods. The detailed study considering several factors enhancing the advertisements or making them less tolerable will be valuable feedback for the advertizing departments of these companies. This data, when shared with the companies, will bridge the communication gap and will help them to design better commercials and consequently improve their market value and sales.

Making ads in Pakistan is tough, as it has many formal and informal censors. Traditionally, the industry has been conservative in Pakistan. Clients are not bold enough, neither are the media groups when it comes to certain categories of advertising…one tends to shy away fearing a backlash from fundamentalist groups (Pande & Bhushan, 2011).

Research Methods

The survey and interviews focused on the communication in the advertisements of the brands of Engro and Nestle Pakistan. The survey focused on the communication in the advertisements of the brands of Engro and Nestle Pakistan. All the advertisements screened in the last 3 years on the leading television channels were included in the data collected through a survey. The study was conducted through random sampling of 100 consumers/viewers in the leading shopping mall of Islamabad. The quantitative research method used for the survey was the ‘image and self-concept measurement': semantic differential scale. The Quantitative research on consumer behavior uses a variety of concepts and numerical scales. Typical ones include attitude research, image and self-concept measurement, multi attribute attitude models and preference mapping (Sheth et al., 1998). Considering the Attitude scales, Likert Scale, Semantic Differential Scale, Behavior Intention Scale and Rank-Order Scales (zeepedia.com) are mostly used to gauge attitude responses. The Quantitative research method to be used for this research will be the ‘Attitude research method’: semantic differential scale. The semantic differential technique of Osgood, Suci and Tannenbaum (1957) ask a person to rate an issue or topic on a standard set of bipolar adjectives (i.e. with opposite meanings), each representing a seven-point scale. It measures people's reactions to stimulus words.

Findings

Surveys

Table 1 shows a survey result depicting the tolerability and intolerability of the vocabulary, themes and images in the advertisements of Engro Foods and Nestle food brands on the local channels PTV, Geo, ARY, HUM and Duniya. The survey was conducted through random sampling of 100 female consumers/viewers in Islamabad. The Quantitative research method, namely, image and self-concept measurement: semantic differential scale (Sheth et al., 1998) was used.

Table 1 -
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The results showed that majority of the viewers found the advertisements intolerable in oneway or another. The themes were found objectionable by 60% majority of the consumers/viewers and Vocabulary was found to be objectionable by 80% of the respondents. The images were disliked by a majority of 70% of the viewers. This kind of a feedback generated a negative conditioning, and may have an adverse effect on customer sustenance and retention.

Interview

Based on the survey, the interviews were also conducted from 20 participants and data was collected through Focus group and the Narrative technique. The interview findings on the advertisements screened on the local channels PTV, Geo, ARY, HUM and Duniya, showed how the participants responded to the advertisements of Engro and Nestle Food. Responses of various age groups regarding the acceptability of the advertisements of food brands were recorded. The following graph shows what the respondents found intolerable in the advertisements as shown below in Figure 1 .

Figure 1: The intolerability of the advertisements of food brands
The intolerability of the advertisements of food brands
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Graph Legend: Bars/cones; Blue: images, Red: vocabulary, Green: themes.

Graph Legend: Categories; Category1: Senior citizens, Category 2: Adults, Category 3: Adolescents, Category 4: Children.

The senior citizens found images the most intolerable in the advertisements, vocabulary after that and themes the least intolerable. The Adults considered the vocabulary most intolerable, then the images and least of all the themes. The Adolescents found the images most intolerable, themes lesser than that and vocabulary the least intolerable. Children disliked the themes the most, then the images and were not much bothered by the vocabulary.

The data collected from the interviews reinforced the results of the survey. The composite analysis of the quantitative and qualitative data clarified the general distinctiveness of television commercials of food products in Pakistan, what the consumers thought about the intolerability of these advertisements, and how Engro and Nestle Pakistan compared to each other in the dislike or intolerability of their Television commercials as gauged by their customers. The consumers of Engro, and Nestle Pakistan, unanimously agreed that very little specific feedback regarding their advertisements was ever collected from the consumers using their products after the advertisements had been screened, and this exercise would prove useful to inform the two companies about the consumer feedback and promote the communication between the company and the client. The findings may also affect the consumers impression about the products marketed in Pakistan and can consequently affect the marketing and sales of their products.

The combined result of Engro and Nestle foods Pakistan is shown in Table 1 and Figure 1 However, before combining the data a comparison was made to assess that which company’s advertisements were well tolerated or liked by their target market. By a very close margin most of the respondents of the survey and the participants of the interviews stated that the advertisements of Engro foods were slightly more culturally acceptable as compared to the advertisements of Neslte.

Conclusion

This research concluded with discovery of the quality of communication in television commercials and the acceptability of the target market of the food brands marketed by Engro and Nestle Pakistan towards them. The male and female consumers assessed the vocabulary, theme and the images represented in the local advertisements of food products marketed by two major companies, Engro and Nestle foods Pakistan, manufacturing and distributing famous brands in the country. The gap in communication between the company and the consumers regarding such practices of collecting post-screening feedback on advertisement in Pakistan was bridged. The advertisements screened in the last 3 years on the leading local television channels were included in the study and the data collected through the survey and interviews established the fact that the Television advertisements were not received well by the majority of the population due to unacceptable content in them.

This feedback would help the advertisers to promote acceptable communication for their target market. The composite analysis of the results of this study will support future studies on the appropriateness of communication in advertisements of these products in television commercials, on local TV channels in Pakistan and its impact on the consumers’ behavior and the importance of their feedback. This data, when shared with the companies, will help them to design better commercials and consequently improve their market value and sales.

References

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Publisher

Future Academy

First Online

18.12.2019

Doi

10.15405/epsbs.2019.11.67

Online ISSN

2357-1330