Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Beginners Guide to Social Media Marketing in Agriculture

social media marketing in agriculture

Social media is kind of like a basement. When it’s filled with clutter, it’s a place you want to avoid. But when the junk is cleared out, you like to hang out there.

Today in agriculture, we are starting to see much wider use of social media by farmers and producers as younger generations begin to take over. According to a recent study by Connectiv, 40% of farmers 35 and younger are engaged in social media. When using social media for marketing in agriculture, you have the power to cut through the clutter and create a go-to space to connect with farmers. All it takes is a willingness to add the wow factor. Try these top 10 tips:

1. Remember--it’s not about you; it’s about your audience.

People are drowning in information and starving for knowledge. Social media posts shouldn’t be self-serving advertisements. What does your audience care about? Posts with the wow factor spark conversations that interest your target audience.

[caption id="attachment_824" align="alignright" width="236"]ebook_cta_icon-02 Like what you’re reading? For more great tips on marketing in agriculture today, check out our free e-book[/caption]

2. Grab attention.

Scary but true—the human attention span has supposedly dropped to a mere 8 seconds, a second shorter than a goldfish’s attention span! To grab attention, understand the factors that motivate people:

  • Make money
  • Save money
  • Save time
  • Be comfortable
  • Gain knowledge
  • Be healthy
  • Enjoy greater convenience
  • Make work easier
  • Be appreciated

Knowing this, you’d never accept this real-life example: “In an effort to highlight competitive salaries and benefits in the pork industry, a recent compensation and human resource practices survey was conducted by”

Remember how money is a motivator? Try this instead: “Want to earn $40,000 to $60,000 a year and enjoy the advantages of rural living? According to a recent study by, you can as a swine farm manager.”

3. Put the good stuff up front.

Grabbing attention means spending 95 cents of your dollar on the lead sentence. Look for ways to surprise or intrigue the reader. This tip works for social media posts, e-newsletter subject lines, titles and more. Even if your information is much more detailed than a social media post, write teasers that encourage your readers to click through to your company’s website or blog with the complete story. Here are some examples:

  • Want to know the 5 marketing must-haves you can't afford to ignore?
  • Enjoy more peace of mind when you cut these 10 useless items from your to-do list.
  • What’s zapping your productivity? Ditch these 3 distractions.

4. Add value.

Put yourself in your readers’ shoes. What tips would make your life easier? What stories would be fun to share with your colleagues, friends or family? Social media posts with the wow factor help your audience learn something new, give them an interesting tidbit of information or offer helpful hints that make your readers’ lives better.

5. Timing is everything.

Social media is a real-time environment. Consider pegging your posts to a news hook or current event. Also, avoid sales pitches. Hard sells are a guaranteed way to turn off followers.

6. Make it personal.

Instead of writing to a nameless, faceless audience, envision a specific person you want to reach. Imagine you are talking to him or her, face to face.

7. Write short.

Your first line must be compelling. This usually works best when you’re concise and leave a little mystery. Let’s say you open with, “It had to happen.” Perhaps your post starts, “There’s a quiet revolution going on.” Now you’ve captured their attention.

8. Show and tell.

Social media posts with relevant images snag 94% more views than content without images, according to the marketing firm HubSpot. Research also reveals that when people hear information, they're likely to remember only 10% of it three days later. If a relevant image is paired with that same information, however, people retain 65% of the information three days later.

9. Include hard numbers.

When you add numbers to prove how your solution makes your reader’s life better, you’ve just added the wow factor—and credibility—to your social media posts. Example: Wish you could save $50 a month? You can when you switch to our service. Think of what you could do with that extra money!

10. Don’t forget the call to action.

If you want people to do something (call for more details, visit your website, etc.) specifically tell them what action to take. Provide relevant links and contact information. Also, ask readers to share your post. When you add the wow factor, it’s easier to keep the momentum going.

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Thursday, November 17, 2016

11 Great Pointers to Start Marketing Your Agribusiness Using Online Video

video-production-at-albert-lea-seedIn today’s world, video is a key part of content marketing in agriculture. Video is everywhere. It’s accessible. It’s engaging. And, it’s surprisingly easy to create.

So, how do you get started making a video for your organization? First, stop thinking about the viral videos you see online. Those are for entertainment value. You want a video with marketing value—something that will engage your customers and prospects, drive them to your website and prompt them to purchase your product or service. Here is some content that works well in video format, and will also prove quite valuable to you and your customer: (more…)

Original Post Here: 11 Great Pointers to Start Marketing Your Agribusiness Using Online Video

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Thursday, November 10, 2016

In Times of Change, Awareness Is Key

Change. The word is everywhere. It’s not overused, really, especially as we learned on election day. With that said, let’s talk about what prompts change—progressive, positive change.

Change begins with a simple awareness of the world around you, and a keen desire not only to keep pace, but to jump ahead of what’s happening. This is especially true in the business world.

For many of our clients, 2016 has been a year of change. Mergers. Acquisitions. Joint ventures. Management realignment. At VistaComm, we have recognized our role in helping clients make change successful for them. We’ve worked hard to position our company as a leader in agribusiness marketing. And this has brought change to VistaComm.

Change in Leadership

The first change occurred in leadership this July. Maria Walz, a 19-year veteran of VistaComm, was named CEO. A CPA by training, Maria previously served as our company's CFO and COO. “My goal in my new role is to bring proven marketing expertise together with innovative solutions to help our clients thrive,” said Maria.

[caption id="attachment_310" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Maria-Walz Maria Walz, New CEO of VistaComm[/caption]

A New Brand Identity

One of Maria’s first initiatives was to rethink and refresh our branding with a new logo and tagline. “Since we felt like we were writing a new chapter in our story, we wanted a logo that celebrated the ongoing evolution of our company and the success of those we serve in agribusiness,” said Maria.

VistaComm logo with tag

Our new logo reflects our style and philosophy. Simple. Memorable. Meaningful. The icon depicts two gently rolling, plowed fields meeting to form a shallow “V.” As Maria explained, that intersection is the crease in which VistaComm thrives—where agribusiness challenges get matched with custom-built marketing solutions. It’s fertile ground for nurturing ideas and growing business. “Our logo now mirrors the quality of the leading-edge services and solutions we provide,” said Maria.

A new tagline—Next-Level Marketing for Agribusiness—positioned with our logo is direct at explaining the WHO and WHAT of our business model. “We’re marketing experts in agribusiness,” said Maria. “We know our rural, ag-based audience, their sensibilities and what they’re looking for in a marketing partner.” Gets a Facelift

Our next major change was a powerful new website to help payoff our “next-level” approach to serving clients. “Whether your challenge is upgrading your branding and messaging, clearly communicating with your stakeholders, growing your market share, or raising your industry profile, we can offer a variety of solutions—all outlined on,” said Maria.


In summary, our awareness of our clients’ needs led us to many positive changes this past year. And with these major changes comes a commitment to responsibility. To keep up. To do better. To grow. And to always maintain awareness of what’s taking place around us.

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Friday, November 4, 2016

5 Reason Your Agribusiness Should Join the Social Media Party

You’re invited! That’s right, I’m inviting you to a party where a majority of your business’ customers will be. That makes this event a great opportunity to network and build relationships. It’s also the chance to promote products and services, notify your customers about upcoming events and educate them. Plus, who doesn’t love a good party?

Hopefully, I now have you wondering where and when this party is. Well, what if I said you didn’t have to leave the comfort of home to attend? Grab your laptop and cozy on up because I’m inviting your agribusiness to join social media.

According to a study by the USDA, 71% of farmers now own computers with Internet access.1 Another study reported by Successful Farming stated that 42% of farmers who use Facebook and Twitter use it every day.2 That means if your agribusiness isn’t on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram or other networks, you’re missing the chance to interact with your customers.42 percent use facebook or twitter daily

5 reasons why your agribusiness should be on social media

  1. Social media gives your brand a voice.

More exposure for your brand is always a plus, but social media provides the opportunity to define your brand’s personality. Social media can easily take you from just another agribusiness to an agribusiness customers connect with. Try posting a humorous quote your customers can relate to. It’ll foster a sense of camaraderie.

  1. Social media builds relationships.

This is where the SOCIAL in social media comes in to play. The best part: There are so many options for getting conversations started on social media. You can encourage customers to share their stories (for example, a photo contest). Bring together customers who are facing a similar situation. Use social media to gain feedback. And the list goes on.

  1. Social media enhances company trustworthiness and credibility.

Your agribusiness has a team of knowledgeable, agricultural experts ready to assist your customers with their needs. Social media is a great way to remind your customers of your expertise. Write blog posts on relevant topics and share the links on your social media accounts. If your company has any news releases or was in the media, post it to your social accounts. These posts will establish your agribusiness as an industry leader.

  1. Social media helps increase your online exposure.

People spend a lot of time on the internet, but how are they spending that time? says individuals are spending 28% of their online time surfing social media, and the average time spent on social media per day is two hours.3 If you want to create an online presence for your business, it’s important to be where people are spending their browsing time—social media.

  1. Social media expands potential sales.

If your customers are using social media, it means your prospects are as well. This gives your agribusiness another potential selling point. More and more producers are sharing their on-farm successes through social media that others are using to influence their buying decisions. Make sure to include posts tailored to this audience.

Contact us today



  1. Farm Computer Usage and Ownership, USDA, 2015 (
  2. Farmers Making Use of Social Media, Successful Farming, 2015 (
  3. How People Spend Their Time Online, com, 2016 (

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