England Marketing has undertaken research for the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) communications team for a number of years. As the ‘Voice of British Farming’, research plays an important part of the NFU’s commitment to providing professional representation for its 55,000 members.
Our work for the NFU has ranged from studies into the public's perception of farmers through to research addressing specific issues affecting the farming sector, such as the impact of badgers, milk prices, and fly grazing.
Over the last few years, England Marketing has also undertaken national readership surveys on three of the main NFU member publications – British Farmer and Grower, Farming Wales, and Countryside Magazine, in order to measure levels of satisfaction with the publications and to identify any ways in which they could better meet their readers’ needs.
Whilst some of the publication research could be conducted online, we know from experience that the most effective way to gain quantitative data from farmers is through telephone interviews, so we utilised this method for this research. We also employed the use of farmer focus groups to gain more in-depth insight.
Since becoming a client over 10 years ago, we have been able to provide the NFU with prompt and usable insight on a range of topics, often sensitive, and often amongst some hard to reach audiences. In particular, their publications have been improved to ensure that they are more relevant on a regional and sector basis.