Agribusinesses often use crop data to build lists of growers for direct mail, email and cold call campaigns. But that only scratches the surface of the strategic insights available when you use crop data to your advantage.
These insights go way beyond building targeted prospect lists for marketing and sales to determine who you should go after. Gather more information on:
- What products or services your market is looking for
- How to connect those products and services to farmers’ specific needs
- Where you should market and what channels to use
- When the best time to reach out is so you’re talking to farmers at the right time
Here are three ways to use crop data to better connect with both customers and prospects, improving your overall revenue-generating capabilities.
1. Determine Your Ideal Customer(s) and Market(s)
Crop data can tell you some important information about how your farmers are using their land and resources. Use crop data to see which farmers planted corn, soy and other crops, valuable information for segmenting your customer base.
Why spend time marketing to or strategizing over a group of growers who are never going to do business with you? Instead, focus your time and energy on the farmers that are going to move you closer to your revenue number:
- Farmers who are growing crops you can help with; and
- Farmers with large enough operations (in terms of acreage or Gross Farm Income) to afford and take full advantage of what you offer; and
- Farmers who reside within a geographic area that you can deliver those products or services to them.
Here’s an example of building one such market segment based on a sample of data from the Farm Market iD database:
|500+ Acre Corn/Soy Growers||126,564|
|Midwest 500+ Acre Corn/Soy Growers||102,913|
As expected, the more focused and specific you get, the more manageable the segment becomes. This means you can be more personalized and targeted in your outreach.
This isn’t just about renting a list of growers for marketing and sales. It’s a whole lot bigger than that:
- Market share. Instead of spending time determining market share among all growers, focus instead on the growers who make up your target market. That way, your market share figure gives you an accurate picture of where you stand against your competitors.
- New customer opportunities. You may have a good idea of the customers in your current market, but your current market may not comprise all the customers you could be doing business with. Consider other use cases of your product or potential new products that can serve new markets, expanding your business’ overall impact.
- Integrated marketing. When you have a clear idea of who you’re marketing to, that means you can integrate all your channels together without worrying about overlap or leaving a bad impression by connecting to the wrong farmers. Send the same message to the same audience through email, programmatic ads, social media, direct mail, and other direct-to-farmer channels at your disposal.
- Targeted sales prospecting. Sales prospecting is often deprioritized due to its time-consuming nature, especially when you already have good relationships with plenty of growers. But the truth is, as the market evolves, you’ve got to make sure you’re bringing in new business so you aren’t reliant on the same people again and again. When you’ve determined your target market, you can focus your salespeople on those audiences, maximizing their success.
This lets you concentrate your marketing efforts on one or two customer segments that you think are likely to buy, rather than send blanket messages to a large, but uninterested, group of growers.
2. Customize Your Messages to Different Growers
In agriculture, many products are highly differentiated, have a high price point, and have highly specific applications. That means that your marketing efforts aren’t going to be a “one and done,” but require a series of touches to generate a purchase.
Farmers are going to take some time to consider what you have to offer--especially if they’re in the midst of planting or harvesting. So it makes sense that you’re not going to close the deal on the first communication.
A series of highly targeted marketing communications that speak to the specific needs of your growers will educate them on your product, demonstrate your effectiveness as the solution to their problems, and build trust.
Instead of engaging in a blanket message that’s meant to be “all things to all people,” focus on how you can match your creative to the specific needs of a given segment.
As you develop marketing campaigns and their related messaging, allow crop data, as well as the other data at your disposal, to inform those messages. For example, a tailored marketing message might read: “our fertilizer will improve your corn yield by 15 percent.”
Not only is this a more descriptive message, but when you’re sending it to a group of corn farmers, it’s a message that’s really going to hit home. This type of messaging is going to spark action among your desired audience.
3. Align Product Offerings with Real Farm Needs
The more targeted you are in your sales offers, the more likely you’re going to hit on something that is going to benefit the farmers you’re going after. This doesn’t just apply to marketing messaging, but also to sales conversations.
When you break your customer base into smaller segments, it becomes infinitely easier to align your products and services with the needs that different farmers have. This can be personalized even down to a one-to-one basis.
Our GrowerProfile application gives crop, grower, and field data for you to learn the details of a given grower and their operation.
This is especially helpful when you have certain seeds or crop-specific pesticides to offer, for example. Before you start a conversation with a grower, see the crop rotation history to understand whether they’re growing corn or soybeans this year. Or, see if they run a diversified operation and crops they grow so you can present them with a tailored, customized sales offer.
With this crop data at your disposal--and when you combine it with the other farm data available to you, including weather, financial, real estate, automotive, and consumer demographics--you can gather detailed intelligence on exactly what the farmer needs and how you can help.
Use crop data in strategy, marketing and sales to build a more robust and effective revenue-generating operation that goes farther and accomplishes more.