Project number: 2021-116
Project Status:
Budget expenditure: $183,300.00
Principal Investigator: Neil Howells
Organisation: Action Market Research
Project start/end date: 14 Aug 2022 - 7 Apr 2023


Following several discussions with Ms Gallichan, we now have a very good understanding of the research outcomes TARFish is seeking to achieve. These are:

• A rich understanding, from a marketing perspective of the segments that make up the recreational fishing market in Tasmania.
• The attitudes and behaviours (particularly recreational fishing behaviours) of these segments and the associated demographics and geographics that will enable TARFish to target those segments that have the propensity to become TARFish members together with the associated services that would appeal to prospective members.
• The extent and nature of segment usage of ‘competitors’. In this sense competitors are considered to be other recreational activities that existing and prospective TARFish members undertake such as golf, archery, etc.
• The brand preferences of existing and prospective TARFish members for a selected range of products and services that will enable TARFish to build a convincing business case to attract sponsorships.

As part of our background investigations, we have reviewed a number of relevant studies with perhaps the most relevant being the ‘2017-18 Survey of Recreational Fishing in Tasmania, J.M. Lyle, K.E. Stark, G.P. Ewing & S.R. Tracey, November 2019’. We understand an update to this study is expected to commence in October 2022. There are also several similar studies that have sought to segment recreational fishing that have been done in other locations, including a market segmentation of Virginia Resident Freshwater Anglers in the US (McMullin et al. 2001), segmenting anglers by lifestyles, lake types and management preferences in Michigan (Christopher Simoes 2014), and, more locally, anglers in The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park (Kyle and Sutton 2010). Older studies such as Potts’ (1992) study on recreational boaters and Adams’ (1992) segmentation of a recreational fishing market demonstrate the usefulness of understanding recreational fishing activity via correlation analysis to more effectively enhance and manage the sector. Of particular use and relevance is the ‘Take Me Fishing’ Segmentation undertaken in 2019 that developed recreational fishing and boating profiles such as ‘Family-Focused Relaxers’, ‘Active Social Families’, ‘Uncommitted’, ‘Avid Adventurists’, ‘Lukewarm Occasionalists’ and ‘Leisure time enjoyers’ in a study that was funded by the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation (RBFF) in the United States. This segmentation helped to not only define key profiles but was also able to estimate growth potentials of both the fishing and boating sectors; understand substitution activities (what they were doing instead of fishing and boating, which included camping, visiting parks, picnicking or hiking), key communication preferences as well as barriers for growth, e.g., not having enough time, preferring other activities, or not having the relevant skills or expertise and feeling clueless about how to get started. This project will draw on this approach, as well as our combined years of experience in undertaking segmentation studies in other market sectors, to address FRDC’s objective to design effective social and marketing approaches and communication strategies to support sustainable fisheries management.

It is clear to us that TARFish is seeking a ‘marketing’ outcome as opposed to an academic treatment to meet the business objectives of TARFish. Our considered opinion based on years of experience in undertaking similar studies, is that our proposed market segmentation, using the methodology, described below will deliver on the outcomes TARFish is seeking. It is cost effective and provides a robust evidence-base for decision making.

The first step for the project will be to host an inception meeting with the consulting team and any other key stakeholders (e.g. members of TARFish board) to establish and agree on the project scope and goals, including refining and defining the intended outcomes as listed outcomes.

The remainder of the method is broken down into the following steps/activities, which is inclusive of several mid-project workshops to meet with and debrief with key members of the team and ensure the project is on track to meet the required objectives (and/or to problem solve any issues, including identifying new opportunities, that arise during the course of the study):

Stage 1. Inception meeting with project investigators and any other identified key stakeholders [All team – including consulting and client groups]. This first meeting is important to crystallise the research objectives and ensure the project is aligned with TARFish business priorities and strategies.

Stage 2. Literature Review [Jane Gallichan, Hudson Howells, Action Market Research,]. The scope of any additional desktop research will be discussed and agreed at the inception meeting. A review of the IMAS reports and any other background information will be conducted, including identifying access to additional databases (e.g. recreational fishing licence holders) and/or fishing/tourism association, clubs and societies.

Stage 3. Workshop 1 and Primary Research Phase 1 – Survey of TARFish members and initial backbone segmentation [Jane Gallichan, Hudson Howells & Action Market Research with input from Power Stats]. Finalise quantitative questionnaire and gain access to sample of licence holders subsequent to feedback from project steering committee, including a workshop to review and discuss the attitudinal statements that will inform the backbone segmentation

Stage 4. Workshop 2 and Primary Research Phase 2 – Survey of Recreational Fishers in Tasmania and expanded segmentation. [Jane Gallichan, Hudson Howells & Action Market Research, Power Stats]. Present results of initial backbone segmentation and gain input and review on these before getting underway with wider recreational fishers’ survey.

Stage 5. Undertake segmentation analysis, develop recreational fishing profiles. [Hudson Howells, Power Stats].

Stage 6. Draft report on results of client surveys [Hudson Howells, Action Market Research, with input from Jane Gallichan].

Stage 7. Finalise report after feedback from wider client team [Hudson Howells, Action Market Research, with input from Jane Gallichan].


1. Review available data on fisher preferences and behaviour including observations of fisher responsesto changed availability of recreational opportunities
2. Understand current drivers and emerging trends in behaviours of recreational fishers
3. Develop segment (profiles) of recreational fishing industry in Tasmania across type and avidity
4. Produce map of interactions/overlaps between different recreational fishing segments (fishers,activities, regions, species) and articulate available opportunities for growth or substitution
5. Report on barriers to change, preferred communication channels, and benefits of recreational fishingto different recreational fishing segments
6. Ensure methodology is robust and easily repeatable

Final report

Authors: Luke Sexton Neil Howells Ricardo Maldonado Jane Gallichan
Final Report • 2024-03-25 • 1.52 MB


Recreational fishers in Tasmania: understanding experiences, behaviours, drivers, communication needs and change factors

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