Farmer Marketing

Simple, inventive ways to increase the value of farm fresh products through direct marketing, internet marketing, and creativity.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Branding Tips for Farmers

As a farmer, you may wonder how to get out of the commodity business and start selling your product directo to consumers. Whether it's through farmers' markets, roadside stands or delivery, the moment you start selling your product you start building a brand, and every small business owner faces many of the same hurdles.  The first and most critical of these hurdles is name recognition.  Any small business owner needs to get their name out to the public and raise awareness of their brand.  As you start to build your small business, keep these small business branding tips in mind.

Tip #1:  Name and Logo

It is important to have a company name that is easy to remember and a company logo that is easily recognized.  Neither of these things is as important as getting your name and logo out there however.  You probably don't have the budget to spend thousands of dollars to have professionals test and select the ideal name and logo for your business, but using a creative agency can be well worth the investment since you'll be using this logo for years.

Tip #2:  Website Publicity

We live in a digital age where potential clients will use the internet to check up on your business and your references.  If your business does not have a professional website, or if it is not up to date, then customers may be driven away.  Keep your website current to reflect the business your company does.

Tip #3:  Maintain a Blog

Keeping up with a blog will allow your business an opportunity to provide quality content on a regular schedule.  The public is always looking for informed professionals instead of amateurs who appear to just be getting into the business.  A blog offers your company and your clients a venue to have a two-way conversation about your products and services.

While a blog is a terrific way to keep your audience aware of developments within your company, it is just one of many tools and should be utilized.  You do not want to limit your online presence to running your blog when that is just one site.  A network of websites, blogs, and social media venues will maximize your influence and draw more users into your business.

Tip #4:  Always Follow Through

Another of the small business branding tips we have to offer is to always follow through on your promises.  While a good review can get lost, a bad one will spread like wildfire.  If you promise to render a service, provide an estimate, or allow a customer to test a product, it must be followed through on quickly or else your small business will gain a reputation for being unreliable and erratic.

Tip #5:  Do What You Do Exceptionally Well

This may seem obvious, but it is one of the most critical small business branding tips that you can take.  Many small businesses try to do everything.  If your company provides a service, make absolutely certain that you are the best provider of that service in your market.  Your potential clients are looking for a company that will provide them with an exceptional product at a fair price.  By trying to do everything for everyone you will end up creating an atmosphere in which your company becomes known for being mediocre in many things but great at no one thing.

I know many farmers will be intimidated by the concept of having a website and updating a blog. It's easier than ever with tools like WordPress or Blogger, so don't be afraid. Just jump in and start swimming.