Project Summaries

01-903TX  Project Manager: J. M. Reeves

MASTER MARKETER PROGRAM

James M. Welch, Texas AgriLife Extension Service

The Master Marketer Educational System is a system of high quality educational programming and support activities that is enhancing producer profitability through improved marketing and management skills. The program is an industry-extension partnership with proven results. In the area of marketing/management education, there is no other system in the country that can compare.

Since 1996 through 2012, there have been 1041 graduates from 24 Master Marketer workshops at 13 different locations including: Amarillo (1996, 1999, 2002, 2006 and 2010), Lubbock (1997, 2000, 2003 and 2007), Vernon (1998, 2001, 2004 and 2008), and Waco (1998 and 2011). In 2013, the 25th Master Marketer Program is being taught in El Campo (the first time in this location) during September 17-19, October 2-3, October 16-17 and October 30-31.

The Master Marketer Educational System consists of a number of educational efforts that include: Master Marketer training (64 hours), leveling workshops, and simulated online marketing clubs via social media (Facebook). A number of activities are conducted to support and enhance Master Marketer educational efforts and ultimately increase producers' returns including the Risk Management Curriculum Guide, Web sites, newsletter, and scheduled marketing teleconferences. Publications in the Risk Management Curriculum Guide have been updated during the past year and are available online. All components of Master Marketer have evolved from the "Parent" program and share the same characteristics: 1) intensive and creative programming; 2) and quality materials and speakers.

During January, February, and March of 2012, the Master Marketer Educational Program was held in Plainview. Sixty-one participants representing 27 counties were trained by the Master Marketer team of instructors. With the level and volatility of prices, registration was filled. The styles of the presentations that have proved to be so successful lend themselves better to groups with 50 to 60 participants.

The topics were tailored to the interests of the participants and focused primarily on cotton, wheat, sorghum, corn, and livestock (cattle). As always, the evaluations by the participants indicated a high level of satisfaction with the program. They were tested on basic risk management concepts before and after the workshop. These tests showed that the participants significantly improved their understanding of these basic tools during the workshop. The participants will be surveyed after 2½ years to get an estimate of the economic impact of the program and their adoption of basic marketing and risk management tools. A few statements from the Plainview Master Marketer graduates of 2012 include:

  • If you are serious about making a living in agriculture, take this course.
  • Master Marketer was the best use of my time all year.
  • This was an excellent opportunity to participate in. As a young producer, I realize the importance of having a set plan to market my crop in this volatile market. This program gave me a great understanding of several useful tools I will use in my futures.
  • To be a successful farmer you must be a good manager. The Master Marketer course covers the management issues, but also emphasizes that marketing is essential to my success.
  • Wonderful course with lots of wonderful people. Thank you! The lessons learned will undoubtedly improve our bottom line.

To date, the Texas Master Marketer graduates have collectively received cumulative impacts well over $100 million dollars since the project began in 1996. Conservatively assuming a ten-year useful life of the marketing information conveyed in the program, and assuming 75% of producers remain in business over this ten-year period, the projected economic impact of Master Marketer training exceeds $190 million in impacts for graduates for the project time frame of 1996-2016.

Funding continues to be used to partially offset the costs of operating the Master Marketer Educational System components and support activities. Our funding provides critical leverage in obtaining other grants. The following are some of the activities planned for 2013:

  • Conduct a Master Marketer Program in the fall months of 2013 in El Campo, Texas.
  • Conduct a 2½ year post-evaluation of the 2011 Master Marketer Program in Waco.
  • Conduct survey with program graduates on changes in market securities to present findings at the Southern Agricultural Economics Association and adapt educational materials accordingly.
  • Continue to refine and complete current program support activities including publications in the Risk Management Curriculum Guide, Web sites, newsletter, and social media efforts (Facebook).
  • Increase grain handler and elevator contacts for better coverage of price data found in the basis Web site.
  • Compile speaker information and dates for the 2014 Master Marketer Program and prepare brochures for printing and distributing.
 

Project Year: 2012
 

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