Abstract #15

# 15
Will your research impact dairy farmers?
Corey Geiger*1, 1Hoard’s Dairyman, Fort Atkinson, WI.

Scientists do a marvelous job conducting research and sharing those findings in scientific journals. However, will that work ultimately change how dairy producers care for cows and produce nutritious dairy products for consumers? Writing for a lay audience, including dairy farmers and their consultants, is a far different proposition than authoring material for scientific journals. To be successful, authors need to convert detailed research into an easy-to-read article while still maintaining the integrity of the technical work. When writing, remember your reader is a busy person who puts in more work hours than the average American. When you write, outline your article, marshal your facts, and tell your story with personal candor. Express yourself simply and concisely. Keep your sentences short and uncomplicated. Short paragraphs add to readership comprehension. Present just one idea per paragraph. Highly technical acronyms are readership busters. To improve comprehension, consider commonly used vernacular. If the sentence cannot be comprehended the first time, it needs further editing. Anticipate practical reader questions, and answer them in the article; if you cannot, say so and why. Get to the meat of your message immediately. Tell the reader something in the first paragraph. Unless historical background is essential, omit it. Too many readers will flip the page if the first few paragraphs don’t have anything to offer. Word counts should not go over 1,100 to 1,200 words. Put action in your title. Avoid label-type titles such as, “Breeding cows.” Compelling titles, 48 characters or less, and strong subtitles add to readership. That review-type subtitle will stimulate curiosity in your material and can help the reader know what you think is important about the material. Keep titles to one line and move all details to footnotes. Also, inserting subheads in the article can call out important points between paragraphs. A theme setter-type photograph can add tremendously to the presentation of the article. That photo should be related to the material presented and clarify points made in the article. Graphics also aid readership. Good charts, graphs, and tables can help the author break up the text and make the page more pleasing to the eye.

Key Words: research, dairy farmers

Speaker Bio
Geiger is the lead editor for Hoard’s Dairyman with editions published in English, Japanese, and Spanish. He joined the team in 1995 and has since traveled to dairy farms or attended meetings in 46 states, 6 Canadian provinces, and 7 other countries. He also has given presentations in 17 states and 4 foreign countries. His duties include preparing editorial commentary and Washington news. Geiger also is responsible for the magazine’s coverage of milk marketing, dairy policy, dairy product promotion, reproduction, genetics, business planning, and production costs. He holds degrees in agricultural economics and dairy science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Geiger served as the 62nd President of National Dairy Shrine and completed two terms as president of the Wisconsin Holstein Association. In 2017, he was elected as vice president of Holstein Association USA, the world’s largest dairy breed association and he serves as a trustee on the Holstein Foundation. He is superintendent of the Intercollegiate Dairy Cattle Judging Contest at World Dairy Expo and is secretary-treasurer of the Klussendorf Memorial Association. Geiger served on the Holstein Foundation’s Young Dairy Leaders Institute Advisory Committee for a dozen years.