Learning to successfully market a farm is the main frame to running a full-time farm. This is because without the customers to purchase from you, your farm is doomed. Many small farms fail. It is an honest and painful fact that many do not.
Marketing your farm is a key way to help gain the customer base needed to run a successful small farm.
As someone who has helped many smaller farms market themselves, I have found a few key ways to help gain a better customer base and grow your farm to help create a better income for your farm!
What type of small farm is the most profitable?
The ideology that a specific type of small farm would be more profitable than any other is a flawed one. There are many untapped potential businesses within the agriculture community that could be multimillion dollar ideas.
Passion is what should always fuel you first and foremost as our consumers fully recognize when we are being fake. When you start following trends; however, we can see what is popular as of right now.
- Bee Keeping
- Farm to Table
These are just a couple of the growing trends in agriculture. Fun Fact: I do the marketing at 4LeafMicros. Here I have also learned how to run a successful microgreen facility and have been helping them grow their business.
Mushrooms are lucrative but take time to grow. These can be grown in a small space and will often sell for a pretty penny considering how low maintenance they are.
The next three are a little more involved. Microgreens, beekeeping, and a farm to table restaurant are far more involved farm ventures when compared to other investments. These three will need to be more hands on.
When we look at companies like True Leaf Market, we can note that their more than just a seed company. They grasped the popularity of microgreens and urban farming and ran with it. This company has found great success with being a fantastic seed supplier!
How do you make the most money on a small farm?
We often find ourselves thinking about the what ifs when thinking about a small farm lifestyle. We look at larger factory farming and wonder how we could possibly compete with these big producers.
The answer is simple: people love the idea of a small farm and supporting local agriculture.
Optimizing your ability to produce quality products that your customers cannot find anywhere else! Finding your own particular niche is important. When deciding what you will have you need to consider the local consumer.
If there are five farms around you producing eggs, why not choose to do duck eggs. Filling a gap inside the system is the best way to make money on your farm.
Another great way to make money would be to take your regular products and turn them into another product! If you are growing fruit it may be worthwhile to process the fruit into preserves.
What crop is in highest demand?
Heirloom tomatoes and other interesting produce. Heirloom produce make a show stopping addition to the dinner table and many shoppers at Farmer’s Markets are looking for just that!
Sourcing proper heirloom seeds from reputable seed companies is important to the quality of your crop!
How do you promote a local farmer’s market?
Many of us won’t start our own market, but it is a great idea to promote markets that you are attending on social media and other platforms. This is important to drive customers to you.
Promoting using ads if you are starting your own market is a great idea. Both Facebook and Google have their own ad running systems. This will direct your ads to specific target audiences.
How do I get more customers to my farmer’s market?
Creating a social media presence using various strategies on Instagram and Facebook can be a great way to promote your business and markets you may be attending.
If you are starting your own, promoting is important. Encourage vendors with a following to post about the market on their own feed. Make sure your market is accessible to the public.
A variety of different vendors is more appealing to consumers than the same ones. Consumers do not want to see carrots at every booth. Art is another great way to drive customers!
Music and other entertainment can also help ensure that your market does fantastic!
What are the marketing strategies for agribusiness?
Marketing strategies for your agribusiness and small farms is important to consider if you want to succeed. Depending on your product, who you market to is important and laws surrounding changes.
Make sure to check with local laws before marketing your business. Some products need USDA inspections.
Business-to-Business is a great way to grab attention of more consumers. You do so by working with individual companies to get your product into their business.
You can either do wholesale or consignment with your products. These businesses often have a larger customer base which can make you more successful than doing direct to consumer.
Drawbacks of this include a lower profit margin compared to selling yourself as the business will take a cut of your profit.
I cold pitch to various local companies asking their wholesale and consignment policies. If it is a restaurant, I discuss the benefits of locally grown produce.
Many businesses are eager to carry local products on their shelves as well!
Cut out the middle man! By using B2C, you are making the profit for yourself. This creates a larger yield for your business.
The downside is, you will need to work harder to gain the customer base and keep it. This means more social media marketing, markets, and other ways to ensure your products get directly to the consumer!
Creating a great social media to gain a larger following is a good way to find more customers.
Regardless of your decision, marketing can be a fun and exciting way to grow your business and follow your passions!