6. Secure Follow-Up
Promotion activities may result in further information requirements and first expressions of interest for the new technology. In many areas the service structure of technology suppliers and their associated installation service providers is not very well developed. Very often, the supplier maintains only a few (if not only one) branches in the country. For many producers interested in modern technology options such as SPIS it is not feasible to travel to the capital to obtain further information. It is therefore required to properly document contract requests and information needs during the promotion and extension events and to provide the producers with contact details for further consultation.
The promoter should process the documented producer’s requests in a systematic way and follow-up action should take place without delay after the first contact during the promotion event. With the follow-up after the promotion activity the initiation of a possible future project starts. Now the promoter has to choose how to pursue the follow-up. Possible scenarios are:
- initiation of direct information and contact between the producer and a technology provider / project developer; and
- recommendation of follow-up activities to locally operating development partners (NGOs, donors).
The next steps in this initiation process will be a first assessment of the suitability of different technology options in the specific farm context. This requires a physical site visit and a deeper joint reflection process together with the producer. The following modules of this toolbox, in particular the DESIGN, SET UP and MAINTAIN processes, assist the advisor and development practitioner to carry out this preliminary assessment.
- Contact between producer and service provider / development partner for follow-up activities;
- Initiation of project development activities.
- Contact details of producer and service provider/ development partner for project development.
- Agricultural advisor / development practitioner;
- Technology provider; and
- Donors and NGOs.
- Technology suppliers often do not maintain an extensive network of branch offices, requiring proactive contact management.
- Follow-up activities should be carried out timely after the request for further information to maintain the confidence of the producer.