Fieldays are a firm fixture on the 4AG calendar. Every year we move multiple large machines to the fieldays, one in the South Island and one in the North, for the events. Our machines are not light or easy to pack up; the logistics behind taking a 12 metre disc cultivator to a show are complex. But the results are certainly worth the effort.
Fieldays give us a unique opportunity to meet face-to-face with our customers, to listen to their business needs – what’s changing, where the pain points are – and work with them to find the very best solution. Our goal in working with our customers to find the perfect piece of kit for them, not just to meet their immediate needs but to ensure their operation is sustainable and has durability.
The South Island show alternates, year and year about, between Kirwee and Gore and is always held in late March. In 2015 the show was at Kirwee, on a brand-new dedicated exhibition ground (larger than the previous site at Lincoln University). The South Island farmers are often working massive operations across a range of farming activity, they’re back country, hardened farming stock through and through, and they know their stuff.
Up north, at Mystery Creek in June, the farmers and contractors are more dairy focused, with a lot of 4AG gear working in this region preparing ground for feed crops like maize. These being our national showcase event, they also attract inquiry from overseas, with many Australian visitors coming on to the 4AG stand.
This is our third year doing fieldays with 4AG, although as a family of businesses we’ve been around since the 1950s. We are solely focused on cropping and arable operations and I believe customers really appreciate that focus. It means we are clued up, experienced and know each piece of our kit thoroughly. We know our machines’ strengths, what their particular speciality is, where they really shine, and when it’s time to think of another solution.
At 4AG, over the last couple of years, we have polished up our communications to customers online, but with fieldays we get the opportunity to put the other half of this picture into place, face-to-face contact. Our guys are passionate about what they do, they have a strong product knowledge and they like nutting out a solution that works for a specific customer; fieldays provides the perfect setting. It means we can see 150 customers over three days, catch up on the latest gear, ask how their business is going, and discuss how the latest developments in kit can help in their farming or contracting operations.
Later in 2015 we are heading to Australia to fly the 4AG flag further afield. We are shipping three machines to a fielday in Gunnedah, New South Wales. These shows are becoming a big part of our business and at the end of the day it’s all about the same thing: Having the integrity to listen to what our customers need and how we can meet that need with the right solution for them.