Marketing via live radio show Funded by USAID

Background: Radio is the preferred source of media in rural areas, particularly for small holder farmers. It is affordable and accessible to those without formal education, and when coupled with other ICT, such as mobile phones, can give a voice to end users through participatory radio programs.
In the early years of stabilization and development in Afghanistan, international donors worked directly with farmers. As a result, many input suppliers were forced out of the markets and the viable business link between input suppliers and farmers has been disconnected. Live radio shows will serve as a tool to revive and support these linkages by providing commercially sustainable value chain development.
USAID RADP-N’s Live Radio Show (LRS) activity was successful in linking agribusinesses and farmers in year three. Throughout the course of this activity, the grantees identified two potential existing input suppliers in each targeted districts and linked them with farmers via advertisement through LRS Programs and promotional program such as brochures, leaflets and field days. As of September 2017, a total of 34 input suppliers (small agribusinesses) reported more than 25% sales increases as a result of this activity. USAID RADP-N proposes to roll out a third live radio show activity in the six project provinces to capitalize on the success of the first and second LRS activities and further develop links among high value crops (HVC) value chain actors in Northern Afghanistan.

Introduction of marketing via live radio show: Building on successes of the first and second LRS marketing activities, RADP-N included a follow-on program in the annual work plan for year four commencing in January and running through to September 2018. This will be accomplished via competitively awarded grants to 6 grantees representing equipment input suppliers and wholesalers, agribusiness, traders, processors, and agricultural farmer groups in six provinces; Balkh (6 districts), Jawzjan (2 districts), Kunduz (3 districts), Badakhshan (3 districts), Baghlan (3 districts), and Samangan (3 districts). Where possible, to ensure effective oversight of the activity, the grantee will be selected from the province where the activity will take place.
Each grantee is responsible for facilitating field days to demonstrate new inputs to farmers, promoting LRS activity through dissemination of promotional materials, and marketin the goods and services to farmers in the fields. The grantees, in consultation with the USAID RADP-N technical team, will select radio stations with the widest broadcast reach in the relevant target areas.
The subject matter will relate to the agricultural seasons and cover relevant topics. From time to time it may be necessary to amend planned topics which will only be considered with the written consent of the USAID RADP-N and well in advance of the scheduled airing date to allow the change to be correctly documented, reported, and advertised
We expect this activity will improve relationships between suppliers and farmers and improve distribution of quality inputs, good agricultural practices, and expose farmers to new markets. USAID RADP-N believes the recruitment of key quality staff will contribute greatly to the continued success of the live radio show as a marketing tool.

PROJECT OBJECTIVES:

Increase farmer productivity and production through the dissemination of knowledge in a timely manner to coincide with agricultural seasons.

Increase sales and profitability of grant recipients by creating customer loyalty through the provision of current agricultural information, services, and quality input supplies.

Support private sector use of radio as a marketing medium for reaching potential customers by building the capacity of agricultural input suppliers and wholesalers to develop a sustainable market-oriented approach to the provision of information, training, equipment, and services to Afghan farmers.

Help farmers understand how to use the information learned through the radio shows and the increased interaction with value chain actors beyond this activity.

CONCLUSION: we have implemented the project in three provinces(Baghlan,Kunduz,Badkhshan) successfully. By implementing of this project we have introduced new agro-input to farmers and by conducting field days through this project in three province we introduced new fertilizers , new agro tools and also we helped the farmers to cultivate their products in a new mechanism. Through marketing via live radio show project we solved and rectified their problems by providing answer to their questions through radio.by the end of the project we discussed regarding the problem which we faced during the implementation of the project.