MUMBAI: Consumers in India's top socioeconomic segment prefer to receive marketing messages from brands via email, while those lower down this spectrum rely on television, a report has revealed.

Epsilon, the marketing services company, interviewed 400 Indians about their expectations as consumers for a report entitled No Single Solution; Multiple Opportunities. It found that 72% of those in the top socioeconomic classification, SEC A, liked to get brand information in email form, while 80% of those in SEC C looked to television.

Commenting on the results, Janet Low, client services director, Asia, Epsilon International, told Campaign India: "The study's key finding underlines the imperative need for marketers to define the target audience by their media access and let that inform the engagement strategy and consequent mix of media and messages."

She added: "Indian consumers are highly value-sensitive ... value drivers are defined differently depending on the industry.

"These differences should be accounted for when developing value propositions and messaging strategies."

Word-of-mouth was a major influence across all SECs, especially from friends, family and partners/spouses. Co-workers were also capable of affecting purchase decisions for 29% of the middle-class and 36% of the affluent.

Low noted that "Indian consumers are very social consumers," and that the importance of word of mouth meant "marketers should create programs to help consumers share their enthusiasm for a brand" via social media.

Consumer loyalty was found to have increased significantly across most of the categories covered by the report. The greatest rise came in grocery, where 65% of Indian consumers said they were loyal, compared to the 47% recorded in a 2011 study.

Comparable figures for financial services were 64%, up from 47%. Clothing reached 57%, up from 45%.

Unlike consumers in China, however, the value of a purchase was perceived as more important than service for Indian buyers.

Data sourced from Campaign India; additional content by Warc staff