Whether you are breeding cows, selling dairy milk, selling chickens or eggs, a successful marketing plan is vital to your farm's profitability. Here are some of the tips to help market your farm:
1. Identify Your Customers
First thing to do is to identify, who exactly buys your products. More often than not, farmers will think "Anyone who will buy". However, it is not so simple. Are you trying to target male or woman? Younger or older customers? Do they belong to a certain income group or live in a particular area?
If you already have buyers, try to identify your biggest spenders. How would you describe them? If you don't have clients, a good way to approach this is to find out your competitor's client. By finding out who your competitors are selling to, you are able to tailor your marketing message to target them.
2. Creating USP For Your Farm
It is important for any businesses to establish its own unique selling proposition (USP). In other words, why would someone do business with your farm rather than your competitors. A good USP is clear and concise. It highlights your product line as well as target market. Your USP should be a constant reminder of your farm's main purpose and direction.
3. Creating Your Farm Logo
No marketing plan is complete without a logo. Your farm's logo can be as simple as your farm's name in distinct font. Your logo should represent your farm's goals and objectives. For example, if you are targeting the female demographic, perhaps you would use softer and natural colours and also a more feminine font.
4. Have A Tagline
Try to think of a tagline that communicates your farm's brand. For example, if you are selling organic products, perhaps something as simple as "always natural" would be a good tagline. It is also important to consider a tagline that is closely associated with your brand so that your competitors cannot substitute their name in it.
5. Having An Online Presence
There is no doubt that there are more and more people using the internet to find information. It is essential that a farm has an online presence such as a website, Facebook account and email address. A website is cost effective and reaches a wide number of customers. Social media presence is also essential these days as almost everyone has a Facebook account now. It makes it easier to connect with your current or potential customers.
6. Join Farm Associations
Association membership can also be one of the cost effective ways to market your farm and products. Membership fees are generally rather modest but the benefits include newsletter, subscriptions and listing in the association's membership directory.
7. Attending Farm Related Events
Whether it is festivals, farmers' market or seminars, they all provide you ample of opportunity to market your farm and products in a hands-on environment. This is especially useful for some buyers who prefers to buy in a one-on-one setting rather than through internet or catalogs.
8. Display Ads
Having display ads in a magazine or newspaper is also another way to market your products. Although this is the traditional way of market, it still provides value for the person advertising. So as long as the cost of acquisition per customer is lower than the life-time value of the customer, it is definitely a net positive ROI to invest money in display ads.
9. Provide Exceptional Customer Service
A business without exceptional customer service is not a good business. If you have a great customer service, it is only natural that your customers would want to continue buying from you. By having satisfied customers, they would naturally tell their friends about your business. Good old word of mouth is still one of the best way to market your business as it does not cost anything.
10. Having a Marketing Plan And Budget
Although there are many ways to market your farm, it is important to have a marketing budget and stay within the budget. For example, you might want to just spend 5% of your gross sales on marketing and if the return is favourable, you can even increase your budget. To have a marketing plan and budget is a good way for you to set goals and make sure you are on track.