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Research outlines RBFF fishing participation strategy

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Commissioned by the RBFF, the ‘Actionable Strategies for Angler Recruitment, Retention and Reactivation’ report is part of the organisation’s R3 programme.

New research that will help develop strategies to further increase angling participation in the US was revealed yesterday.

Commissioned by the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF), it is part of the organisation’s R3 (Recruitment, Retention and Reactivation) programme.

It is the result of national surveys and focus groups involving US residents and R3 professionals to determine how changing demographics and new technologies impact the ability of state fish and wildlife agencies to deliver R3.

Key findings and recommendations from the research include:

• Support and expand urban fishing programmes: Bring the fishing experience directly to growing populations of Americans.

• Include diversity in images and communications: Implement outreach efforts that are representative of the diverse American population.

• Promote local fishing opportunities: Anglers do not typically travel more than half-an-hour to go fishing; highlight places to fish that are close to home.

• Target angler R3 efforts towards outdoor recreationists, particularly boaters and campers: More than a third of U.S. residents say they are very interested in fishing; many of them are already participating in crossover activities like boating and camping.

• Emphasise nature and family and friends in angler outreach efforts: Top reasons to fish are nature and scenery, to be with family and friends and to relax.

• Streamline licence offerings to keep the process simple: Participants reported that licence purchasing is confusing.

• Retain and reactivate traditional licence buyers: Encourage aging angler groups to participate and become mentors to others.

“We’ve said for years that R3 is critical to our 60 in 60 goal (60 million anglers by the end of 2021) and to the success of our industry,” said RBFF President and CEO, Frank Peterson. 

“Now, we have clear actions that state agencies can take to better recruit, retain and reactivate anglers and boaters, including using inclusive messaging to welcome new and diverse audiences to the water – a theme echoed by our recent Marketing Segmentation Study.”

The demographic trends identified in the full report will continue to have important implications for fishing participation for years to come, says the RBFF.

The full report – Actionable Strategies for Angler Recruitment, Retention and Reactivation – can be found at: here

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