CONSUMER CHARACTERISTICS OF ACI IODIZED SALT 1. 1. Origin of the report: The main reason for preparing this report is to fulfill the requirement of our business communication course in first semester. Another important reason is to determine the consumer characteristic of ACI iodized salt. Salt is the most important element of cooking. Due to actions taken by the different health care organizations, people are being more and more aware of the importance of using iodized salt. People are looking forward to buy a product on which they can rely about their need of iodine.
This calls for determining the consumer characteristics of our company. This report includes all the characteristics of its consumers. I think these things will highly benefit the organization. 1. 2. Problem and purpose: The topic of the report is “consumer characteristics of ACI salt”. The main idea of the report is to identify the consumer characteristics of the consumers of ACI salt. The purpose of the report are- a) To select the target market easily after this research. b) To know the buying pattern of the consumers’. c) As iodized salt is a convenience product, price is one of the major factors that influence the target market.
So it is very important to fix the price according to the customers’ satisfaction. So the report will be helpful to determine the price. d) To know what are the alternative brands consumers’ use and their switching behavior, e) Recommendations in the light of findings. 1. 3. Historical background: “ACI has recently launched a unique product for the first time in Bangladesh in its food items category, ‘ACI Salt’. ACI Salt was launched in 2005. The best in its kind, ACI Salt is vacuum evaporated, free flowing and rightly iodized.
Vacuum evaporation technique gives the product the utmost purity as it is free from all kinds of dirt. It is also very porous and free flowing. Iodine is coated in every single grain which makes it an essential product for the children; the absence of right quantity of iodine in their food may cause mental disability to them. ”( http://www. aci-bd. com/corporate1. html, 25th july,2008) ACI has set up its salt refining plant in Rupganj, on the banks of the Shitalakhya River. The plant produces refined iodized salt through Thermal Evaporation System.
ACI has used technology from China Heavy Machineries Corporation (CHMC) in establishing the plant. The end product is of high quality, free-flowing salt with even, crystallized grains. The iodine content of ACI salt has a stability of more than 6 months. The project has been undertaken at an approximate cost of Taka 32 crores. 1. 4. Literature review: a) Product: a good service or idea, including all the tangible and intangible characteristics provided in an exchange between buyer and seller. ( Kotler, 2005) b) Price: the value that a buyer exchanges for a product in the market transaction. Kotler, 2005) c) Promotion: the communication of favorable, persuasive information about a firm or a product in order to influence potential buyers. ( Kotler, 2005) d) Placement/Distribution: making the product available to the target market. ( Kotler, 2005) e) Target Market: set of actual potential buyers. (Kotler, 2005) f) Scope: the boundaries of the problem. (Lesikar, and Flatley,. 2005) g) Brand: a name, symbol or design that identifies the goods and services of one seller and distinguishes them from the goods and services of the competitors. nickels, Mchugh & Mchugh, 2007) 1. 5. Methodology: 1. 5. 1. Data collection method: 1. 5. 1. 1. Data Sources: This research is carried out using primary source of data which is collected through structured questionnaire and personal interview. 1. 5. 1. 2. Sample: The housewives of the Dhanmondi, Mohammadpur and Mirpur area of Dhaka city is the sample of this survey. I have chosen the housewives as the sample because they are the main consumers of salt. If we can determine their characteristics then we can vividly imagine the characteristics of the whole consumers. 1. 5. 1. . Sample size: Sample size is limited to 30 housewives of the Dhanmondi, Mohammadpur and Mirpur area of Dhaka city. 1. 5. 1. 4. Location: The location of this research is some selected area of Dhaka city: Mirpur, Mohammadpur and Dhanmondi as they cover all classes of people. 1. 5. 1. 5. Data collection instruments: 1. A standard Questionnaire 2. A tape recorder for personal interviews. 1. 5. 2. Data analysis Method: The data analysis method is both Quantitative and Qualitative. 1. 6. Scope: The study of this project only deals with the consumer characteristics of ACI salt.
There are other criteria such as, competitiveness with other products etc. which play a vital role to establish the product in the market, will not be discussed in this report. The housewives of Dhanmondi, Mirpur and Mohammadpur are used as sample here assuming they will represent the whole ACI salt consumers of Bangladesh. 1. 7. Limitations The significant limitations for the purpose are: 1. 7. 1. Time constraints: time is not sufficient to complete such a research work. 1. 7. 2. Reluctance of cooperation: sometimes it very difficult to persuade people for survey or interview. 1. 7. 3.
Small sample size: the sample size is not too large to get a comprehensive result. 1. 8. Report preview: In the following pages, the findings of the report are discussed. First comes the demographics of the consumers. This includes age, occupation and educational background of the consumers. Second is the buying pattern, which includes duration of consumption and frequency of purchase. Third are the attributes considered while purchasing ACI salt which includes unique features of ACI salt and factors considered while purchasing. Then come pricing, availability, alternate brands and specialty of the alternate brands.
Finally comes the switching behavior of the consumers. Based on the findings there comes conclusion and recommendations are drawn from the bases of findings and conclusion. 2. 1 Demographics: The main participants of the survey conducted for this report are only 30 housewives of Dhanmondi, Mirpur and Mohammadpur area of Dhaka city. As the sample is housewives, they all are female. 2. 1. 1 Age: The age of the participants starts from 20 to 40&above. Table 1 and figure 1 given below show the number and percentage of participants in different age groups.
From this we can see that most of the respondents are in the age group of 30 -39, 13 of them to be exact (43. 33%). 20-29 age group consists of 9 respondents (30%) and the rest 8 respondents is in the 40 & above age group. | TABLE 1| | AGE| NO. OF RESPONDENTS| PERCENTAGE (%)| 20-29| 9| 30| 30-39| 13| 43. 33| 40 & ABOVE| 8| 26. 67| TOTAL| 30| 100| 2. 1. 2. Occupation: Within the participants 12 were service holders and 18 were homemakers. Table 2 and figure 2 given below show the number and percentage of participants with occupation. TABLE 2| OCCUPATION| NO. OF RESPONDENTS| PERCENTAGE (%)|
SERVICE HOLDER| 12| 40| HOME MAKER| 18| 60| TOTAL| 30| 100| 2. 1. 3. Education: The education range is SSC to MASTERS. This is a noticeable thing that the majority of the respondents have completed their masters, 15 of the 30 respondents (50%) to be exact. Table 3 and figure 3 given below show the number and percentage of participants with education. | TABLE 3| | EDUCATION| NO OF CONSUMERS| PERCENTAGE (%)| SSC| 2| 6. 67| HSC| 3| 10| BACHELORS| 10| 33. 33| MASTERS| 15| 50| TOTAL| 30| 100| 2. 2 Buying patterns: 2. 2. 1. Duration of consumption: Table 4 and figure 4 reveals that among the 30 participants 5 (16. 7%) has been consuming ACI salt for less than 6 months, 14 for 6-12 months (46. 66%) and 11 consumers (36. 67%) has been consuming ACI salt for more than a year. | TABLE 4| | DURATION| NO. OF CONSUMERS| PERCENTAGE (%)| LESS THAN 6 MONTHS| 5| 16. 67| 6 – 12 MONTHS| 14| 46. 66| MORE THAN A YEAR| 11| 36. 67| TOTAL| 30| 100| 2. 2. 2 Frequency of purchase From table 5 and figure 5 we can find out the frequency of purchase of the participants. 6. 67% buys weekly, 16. 67% buys twice in a month, 46. 67% monthly, 20% every two months, 6. 67% every 3 months. | TABLE 5| | FREQUENCY| NO.
OF CONSUMERS| PERCENTAGE (%)| WEEKLY| 3| 10| TWICE IN A MONTH| 7| 23. 33| MONTHLY| 14| 46. 67| EVERY 2 MONTHS| 6| 20. 00| TOTAL| 30| 100| 2. 3 Attributes considered while purchasing 2. 3. 1 Most unique feature Table 6 and figure 7 represents the factors that consumers consider as most unique while purchasing. Here we can se that 9 of the consumers (30%) think that quality is the most unique feature, 7 think (23. 33%) that packaging is, 6 respondents (20%) think that purity is the most unique feature. TABLE 6| FEATURE| NO. OF CONSUMERS| PERCENTAGE (%)| QUALITY| 9| 30| PRICE| 5| 16. 7| INGREDIENTS| 3| 10| PACKAGING| 7| 23. 33| PURITY| 6| 20| TOTAL| 30| 100| 2. 3. 2 Considered factors for consuming Table 7 and figure 7 shows that most of the consumers consume ACI salt because the find its quality, packaging and price better. 26. 67% (8 respondents) considers the quality for consuming, 23. 33% (7 respondents) considers packaging and 16. 67% (5 respondents) considers price. | TABLE 7| | FACTORS| NO. OF CONSUMERS| PERCENTAGE (%)| QUALITY| 8| 26. 67| PRICE| 5| 16. 67| AVAILABILITY| 4| 13. 33| PACKAGING| 7| 23. 33| PRODUCTION PROCESS| 3| 10| PROMOTIONALS| 3| 10|
TOTAL| 30| 100| 2. 4 Pricing From table 8 and figure 8 we can clearly see that 70% (21 respondents) of the consumers think that the price is suitable for purchase. | TABLE 8| | PRICE| NO. OF CONSUMERS| PERCENTAGE (%)| SUITABLE| 21| 70| NOT SUITABLE| 9| 30| TOTAL| 30| 100| 2. 5 Availability From table 9 and figure 9 we can see that 80% of the consumers find ACI salt available for purchasing. But still few are there who do not find it available. | TABLE 9| | AVAILABILITY| NO. OF CONSUMERS| PERCENTAGE (%)| AVAILABLE| 24| 80| NOT AVAILABLE| 6| 20| TOTAL| 30| 100| 2. 6 Alternate brands
From table 10 and figure 10 we can see that most of the consumers consume ACI salt, (53. 33%). But still a few (26. 67%) consume Confidence salt and 20% consume Molla salt. | TABLE 10| | SALT BRAND| NO. OF CONSUMERS| PERCENTAGE (%)| ACI| 16| 53. 33| CONFIDENCE| 8| 26. 67| MOLLA| 6| 20| TOTAL| 30| 100| 2. 7 Specialty of alternate brands Table 11 and figure 11 reveal the specialties of other brands that are consumed by the respondents. The most significant specialty is lower price, 50% respondents agreed to this. 28. 57% agreed that other brands are more available, 21. 43% agreed that other brands have better quality. | TABLE 11| |
SPECIALTY OF ALTERNATE BRAND| NO OF CONSUMERS| PERCENTAGE (%)| LOWER PRICE| 7| 50| BETTER QUALITY| 3| 21. 43| MORE AVAILABLE| 4| 28. 57| TOTAL| 14| 100| 2. 8 Switching behavior Table 12 and figure 12 presents the anticipated factors that should be improved if the non-consumers are to switch to ACI salt. The most anticipated factor is lower price (28. 58%), better quality (21. 43%) and more promotional activities (21. 43%). | TABLE 12| | FACTORS| NO OF CONSUMERS| PERCENTAGE (%)| QUALITY| 3| 21. 43| PRICE| 4| 28. 58| AVAILABILITY| 1| 7. 14| PACKAGING| 1| 7. 14| PRODUCTION PROCESS| 2| 14. 28| PROMOTIONALS| 3| 21. 43| TOTAL| 14| 100|