Event Promotional Package

Ayanava Majumdar
Extension Professor

Chambliss, A.*1, , Majumdar, A.2, , Willis, H.3,
1 Program Assistant and Outreach Administrator, Alabama Cooperative Extension System, Auburn, AL, 36849
2 Extension Professor, ALABAMA COOPERATIVE EXTENSION SYSTEM, Auburn, AL, 36849
3 Undergraduate Project Assistant, Alabama Cooperative Extension System, Auburn, AL, 36849

The Alabama Beginning Farmer Program (www.alabamabeginningfarmer.com) is a grant-funded long-term initiative of the Alabama Cooperative Extension System with the aim of supporting beginning farmers statewide via on-farm services and training curricula consisting of website, slide charts,  digital/printed handbooks, the Farming Basics Online Course, the Farming Basics Mobile App, and social media channels (Facebook and Twitter with 2,450 subscribers).  All publication carry the unique program logo and follow a color scheme for consistency.  The program has a detailed communication and marketing strategy coordinated by a full-time program assistant (Ann Chambliss) and an undergraduate student (Harli Willis).  Over 30,630 copies of print publications are in circulation that promote the beginning farmer program.  The Alabama IPM Communicator E-newsletter has 3100 subscribers that receive a comprehensive email (research-based blog articles plus event listing) twice every month throughout the year; this results in over 3,000 blog views each year.  Over 52 articles related to the Alabama Beginning Farmer program resources, pest alerts, and farming success stories have also been published in the Neighbor Magazine (Alabama Farmers Federation), Alabama Farmers Cooperative, and popular grower magazines like the Vegetable and Specialty Crop News (Gainesville, FL) and the American Vegetable Grower (Willoughby, OH). Promotional videos developed by undergraduate project assistants are available on Alabama Extension YouTube – Beginning Farmer Project Playlist, https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLkNoAmOtt___MKj6IBxvWzOdWP0btBq4D (total of 45 videos and webinar recordings).  The five promotional and impact video reports have received 1,475 views. Other promotional and marketing materials include (number of copies in parenthesis):  Beginning Farmer Table Cloth (5); Program Banner (10); Mobile App and Online Course Promotional Cards (5,000); Beginning Farmer Tri-fold Brochure (7,000); Bookmarks (3,000); Plastic bags (2,000); Program Pens (2,000).  These promotional materials are used by over 12 regional Extension agents and county Extension coordinators in Alabama Extension at events that reached 1,700 participants in 2019. The Alabama Beginning Farmer Program reaches to a very diverse audience and focuses on-farm support to low resource farmers and military veterans through subcontracts with four nonprofit organizations. In short, the Beginning Farmer Program has a balanced communication and marketing strategy reaches producers across Alabama and the Southeast.