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La Leche League International
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by Nichole L. Reber
From NEW BEGINNINGS, Vol. 17 No. 1, January-February 2000, p. 28

For those members wondering about your impact in the survey you filled out in the November/December 1998 NEW BEGINNINGS, the reports are in!

Of 2,000 surveys inserted into randomly chosen copies of the magazine, we received 153 responses. In general, the results showed that our readers buy goods from our advertisers and NEW BEGINNINGS is a valuable part of membership and a good find for non-members. Most of our readers seek out La Leche League assistance after their babies are born. Most people who learn about LLL during pregnancy do so through childbirth classes.

In the past, the comments we've heard most often about NEW BEGINNINGS have been "I read it cover-to-cover as soon as I get it." or "It always seems to come just when I need it." Survey results confirm this, since well over 90% of respondents say they read NEW BEGINNINGS cover-to-cover all the time or nearly all the time. We were truly delighted by the fact that so many of you share your copy with family members, friends and your local doctors' office. More than a quarter of respondents indicated that more than one person in her household read the magazine. In fact 88% of respondents said they recommend this magazine to someone not involved in LLL.

It appears our advertising efforts are serving our audience well: 56% of respondents had purchased merchandise from an LLLI catalogue and 52% had bought from a NEW BEGINNINGS advertiser. A whopping 62% were "very satisfied" with these purchases.

Of those who responded to our survey, 77% told us they become members while nursing. Concurrently, 5% of respondents were pregnant at the time of the survey.

Mothers said they discovered LLL through a variety of means: 69 respondents through family or friend, 28 through books or magazines, 28 from childbirth classes, 18 from a local ad or flyer, 13 through a lactation consultant, six on our web site, six from their midwife, six from their physician, and five had previous knowledge of LLL.

Among respondents 133 had two children or less. Also, 99.3% were married and 0.7% were divorced or separated. The highest percentage of respondents were between 33 and 36 years old. Half of the respondents hold a college or university degree.

A large number of respondents (65%) were at-home mothers, while 26% worked at least part-time outside the home and 13% worked from home. Of those who planned to return to work outside the home, 90% said they would breastfeed, however less than 20% would pump at work.

On a local level, 80% of respondents still attended LLL meetings. Schedule conflicts and lack of sufficient time were the main reasons given for those who no longer attend. Approximately 21% of respondents nursed for more than one year. The survey showed us that more than 13% of mothers nurse for 30 months, followed by 12.7% for 36 months and 7% for a full year. Related survey questions showed that 20% of respondents introduced their babies to solids at less than six months, and about 60% did so between six and nine months.

More than 50% of respondents had attended LLLI conferences, especially area conferences (94%). About half rated the experience satisfying.

The "Mothers Stories" column received the highest ratings by more than three quarters of respondents, with "Toddler Tips" (64%), "Staying Home Instead" (56%), and feature stories (53%) following. Respondents showed us our top competing magazines include Mothering (55%), Parenting (nearly 22%), Parents (21%), and Child ( just over 13%).

Forty-four percent of respondents were "very satisfied" and 33% were "somewhat satisfied" with the quality and benefits of LLL membership. Ninety-four respondents in total said LLL has been "very helpful" with their needs; 46 ranked LLL as "somewhat helpful."

To those who responded to our survey: Thank you for your time and efforts to critically consider our questions. We have already begun implementing the findings to serve our membership best and in the future we will again survey our members to see how we're doing.

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