Ag Careers in Focus in the Wimmera

RURAL: Kate Liersch and Karen Inkster moved back from the city to set up their own advertising business in Warracknabeal. Picture: ERIN WITMITZ
RURAL: Kate Liersch and Karen Inkster moved back from the city to set up their own advertising business in Warracknabeal. Picture: ERIN WITMITZ

TWO talented young women from the Wimmera have returned there, after building careers in some of the biggest and most respected advertising agencies in the country.

Birchip Cropping Group extension and communications officer Jemma Pearl caught up with Warracknabeal’s Kate Liersch and Wallup’s Karen Inkster for her podcast  Ag Careers in Focus.

After growing up with family farms in the Wimmera, both women left for Melbourne to study and build careers in advertising.

However, Ms Liersch and Ms Inkster found that their skills were needed in the regional setting and that returning to Warracknabeal was also conducive to raising a young family.

Through their small advertising business, Aubrey + Areegra, they have not only worked for large companies like New Holland Australia, but also other smaller businesses including Rupanyup Living.

Ms Liersch and Ms Inkster said their advantage over city advertising agencies was their in-depth understanding of rural industries.

Ms Inkster’s husband Daniel managed the family farm with his aunt and uncle while Ms Liersch’s partner was also a farmer.

“There is a lack of understanding,” Ms Liersch said.

“I think a lot of research now is coming out that people are a lot more disconnected from farmers and from agriculture,.

“This means that those working in advertising in the media don’t have a real understanding of what goes on a farm or in a rural community.”

Ms Inkster said that it was also in the agriculture industry’s interest to try to promote itself.

“I think too, it is not that people don’t care, it is just not coming up in their day-to-day life,” Ms Inkster said.

“When I started an Instagram feed of a photo every day of harvest, I had so many people saying, ‘wow I have no idea what goes on’.

“And I actually feel like it is our job as country people and promoters of ag to be putting that sort of stuff out there on social media so that our city friends can see and understand more about what we do.”

I actually feel like it is our job as country people and promoters of ag to be putting that sort of stuff out there on social media so that our city friends can see and understand more about what we do.

Karen Inkster, Aubrey + Areegra

The episode is part of the Ag Careers in Focus podcast series, which can be found on iTunes.