Agriculture is one of the world’s most traditional industries while farming is amongst the world’s oldest professions. While farming has been around for so long and typically been isolating, communication within agriculture has never been more accessible and prioritised than now. With a rapid increase in number of smartphone users and the ease of use of the internet on the go, social media has become a more recognised form of communication and marketing in agriculture.
According to research data, about 3.96 billion people were actively using social media worldwide in 2020, which accounts for an increase of about 10.9% year-on-year from 3.48 billion in 2019. Although most industries have embraced digital marketing and social platforms in business and consumer engagement, it has not been widely adopted in agriculture. Limited research data available shows that there are increasing social media trends in agribusiness marketing, but for many farmers, it is still a trivial pursuit.
The two main barriers keeping farmers from getting the most of social media are:
- Lack of Knowledge: Platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram provide a specialised suit of features for marketing, promotion and engagement. However, the availability of several marketing capabilities and distinguishing features in each platform lead ag marketers to believe that they have to excel at each platform before jumping in. The fact is social media marketing is not as complex as it may sound and every beginner learn to do it by actually doing it, with some trial and error. Without proper knowledge of the platforms, marketers will just be surrounded by misconceptions and missing out on the huge marketing potential of social media.
- Lack of Time: Another common reason why a lot of farmers and ag marketers are yet to capitalise on powerful social media networks is that they struggle to make time for it. Producers and businesses in agriculture have to make several decisions and be involved in many operations on a daily basis, which doesn’t leave much time to create a social media post or engage with the audience regularly. Creating even a simple, short post may involve finding the right keyword/hashtag, a good quality image and choosing the right phrasing, which is best left to the professionals. With professional assistance, you can better catch farmers’ attention and reach them with personalised messages while effectively using the social media ecosystem.
Once you have proper knowledge of how social media helps and works in agriculture as well as professional guidance to implement it, you can use those platforms to connect to your targeted farmers and spur the type of engagement that drives conversions.
HOW TO USE SOCIAL MEDIA IN AGRICULTURE
Though social media and digital marketing may not be as widespread in agriculture as in other industries, the number of farmers and agribusinesses accepting digital media is still gradually increasing.
Thanks to many advances in digital technology and smart agriculture, word of mouth is not the only medium farmers and businesses alike can rely on to promote their products and brands amongst targeted audiences; creating a digital presence is a quick and effective way to get your consumers to know about your business and products/services.
If you are new to digital media world, you will be happy to know that getting started with social media is not as difficult. In fact, it is as simple as signing up on a platform that is popular amongst your targeted customers. To choose the right platform to reach your target audience, you need to define your objectives first and then determine which social media platform(s) best align with your goals. Consider asking yourself the following questions before you create a social media presence:
- What is your vision?
- Who you are trying to target on social media?
- What do you want to achieve with your social media account?
Answering these questions will give you a place to start with your search for the right social media platform. It is advisable to choose one platform at first to begin with and create a strong presence and follower base before committing to multiple platforms.
In addition, listed below are some other tactics you can use to benefit from your social media presence:
- Start posting content daily: Creating an account on a social media platform will not guarantee success with social media marketing. You must create and post relevant content regularly for your audience to see. You content may be anything from general news about your company or on the industry to a shared third-party post.
- YouTube is a popular platform amongst farmers and businesses associated with agriculture. Create video content to frequently post on your YouTube while encouraging your viewers to share the video to gain more following. The more people who can find your videos, the more people will learn about your farm or agribusiness.
- Leverage Facebook ads in your marketing. There are a million farmers on Facebook; if your agribusiness ads start to show up on their pages, you can reach a wider target audience and drive better engagement. Just make sure you ads are relevant and informational enough to induce viewers to click on them.
Social media is a powerful medium of communication and engagement for any agribusiness marketer when it comes to marketing to farmers. The key to getting the most out of social media marketing in the agriculture industry lies in understanding how actively farmers use social media and determining the channels that are most relevant to them. One way, certainly the most advisable and inevitable, to do this is working closely with a digital marketing expert in ag industry. And this is why KG2 exists; we help agribusiness marketers connect with the right producers at the right time with the right message – by using a combination of our extensive market research, farm data, smart farming techniques and digital marketing expertise. The industry experts at KG2 assist you in actively engaging with your target audience on various social media channels as part of digital marketing with the purpose of delivering relevant, informative and engaging content.