Tips to drive better farmer engagement and boost your brand.
Just like you, farmers receive numerous webinar invitations. With so many things to do in a day, a webinar is a major time commitment for farmers, so yours has to stand out from the rest. Farmers want to know it’s worth their time and how they’ll directly benefit the webinar. What factors should you consider when planning a webinar for farmers?
ROI. The webinar is for farmers, not your brand. Farmers expect a good return on their time investment. The webinar should offer solutions or provide business information for enhanced decision-making. Select topics that help farmers improve operations, address production issues, reduce risk and/or help them save or make more money.
Timeliness. Webinar topics should align with the seasonality of farmers’ decision-making or address current or emerging issues. For instance, a webinar on tax implications is best suited for the end of the year, whereas weed management might work better before planting.
Easy Sign-Up. Make it easy for them to register. Get a few basic pieces of information (name and email for follow-up opportunities), but not too many details that it makes them uncomfortable. Also, send a reminder email about the webinar as the date draws near.
Avoid Bait and Switch. Don’t promote the webinar as one thing and cover a different topic during the webinar. Farmers will likely see this shift as a waste of their time. Plus, it won’t help your brand’s reputation.
Lead not Sell. Be a thought-leader. Don’t use the webinar to sell a product. The webinar is your opportunity to build relationships by being an expert on the issue. That will separate you from the competition.
Don’t Overcomplicate. Simpler is better. Get to the point of the webinar. Don’t overwhelm with too many details. You want farmers to easily remember all the key points.
Engagement. Create ways to engage the farmers. For example, a pre-survey helps you customize information for the webinar. Engaging farmers with in-webinar surveys allows you to emphasize critical points with the results.
The Expert. Include subject matter experts in your webinar to enrich the experience and lend credibility to your brand. Farmers will appreciate their perspective and experience.
Farmer to Farmer. Farmers love to hear other farmers talk about similar problems. Invite a farmer to join your webinar panel and have them share their insights on the topic.
Q&A. Always allow plenty of time for participants to submit questions. Provide informative answers, but keep them short and concise. It allows for more questions and keeps farmers’ attention longer.
Feedback. Get feedback quickly. Conduct a post-webinar survey on the content and presenters. This feedback will help with future webinars and likely leave farmers with a positive impression about your brand.
Follow up. Automatically send a link to a recording of the webinar even if they couldn’t join the live webinar. Consider providing them with links to bonus content or additional resources. Remember to say thank you. Afterall, they took time out of their busy schedules to join the discussion.
Webinars aren’t for everyone, but they can be an effective marketing tool when done well. Factor in most of these tips and you will have the makings of a successful webinar that farmers will appreciate.
Independent Consultant. Before starting her freelance career, Diane worked at Rhea + Kaiser for more than 25 years. During her tenure she put her strong critical thinking and creative problem solving skills to work across a variety of clients.