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Member services market research survey

Project start date: 24 July 2015
Project end date: 20 August 2015
Publication date: 20 August 2015
Project status: Completed
Livestock species: Sheep, Goat, Lamb, Grassfed cattle, Grainfed cattle


​MLA employed provider KG2 to carry out its annual member survey. MLA also received a quote from GFK, the company who carried out the 2014 survey – and although both organisations quotes were competitive, MLA has decided to use KG2 for the 2015 survey.
This comprised over 500 20 minute phone interviews with MLA members to gauge producer awareness and satisfaction of MLA services. The survey informs communications strategy for the MLA CMII team moving forward and is a key indicator for how the team is tracking against specific KPIs (for example member satisfaction, website use, awareness of MLAs role in industry). Matt Peacock managed the survey, in conjunction with members of the corporate communications team.
The results were shared with a wide range of stakeholders including the MLA Board, MLA staff, Peak Industry Councils and the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.
While comparisons with previous member surveys is useful to gauge progress, 2015 saw the implementation of a new approach to the survey – asking more detailed and challenging questions, with less promoted answers, to ‘draw a line in the sand’ and offer a true insight into member’s views.
Respondents were selected from the MLA database at random, but with some direction to have a portion of large levy payers so the report also identifies and compares the results for 32 ‘major’ producers (at least 2,000 cattle, 14,500 sheep or 15,000 goats in their herd). Among the producers surveyed, the average herd sizes were 89 grainfed cattle, 425 grassfed cattle, 2,268 sheep, 693 prime lambs and 1,389 goats.
Some key findings:
The average level of satisfaction with MLA was 35 out of 5 (up from 3.3 in 2014).
Those members most satisfied (score 4 or 5) had an average rating of 4.2, least satisfied (score 1 or 2) was just 1.6.
Being “happy with marketing” was the most reported positive reason for satisfaction with MLA.
67% said “MLA is a thought leader for the industry”.
Satisfaction with MLA communications rated at 7.6 out of 10 (up from 7 in 2014).
Only 4% of members claimed they know a lot about MLA (6% in 2014), with 48% saying a “fair amount”.
Meat quality and food safety were the top two most important areas for R&D. Improving farm gate returns through MSA, animal health and animal nutrition were the next most important.
The value of programs for cattle producers was good (7.9/10 for More Beef from Pastures). However, the value of MLA programs to sheep producers rated more highly.
25% of members had participated in some MLA activity of program in the past year.Highest for those aged below 45.
Members currently find out about MLA activities and programs overwhelmingly through Feedback magazine, followed by MLA emails and newspapers. Feedback magazine is an important communication tool for MLA as 61% of member salways read it and 92% at least sometimes read it.
23% of members always open their Friday Feedback e-mail.
“Updated information about the market” was the main reason to be a member of MLA.
A more in-depth summary of the results is available on request.