Marketing to farmers during their media-stacked day

by Jeff Walter
June 21, 2016

media channels for marketing to farmers

How to best leverage competing and complimentary media channels for ag brands.

It is no secret that people are stacking media channels, i.e., using many different media, all day long. A recent study indicated the average U.S. adult is spending around twelve hours per day using the full array. And there’s every reason to believe farmers are even more voracious consumers of media. They are, by nature, a very curious lot, passionate about their farm and world class multi-taskers.

Tune the farmer to your message with many channels

Picture Joe Miller, a 2,500-acre corn and soybean farmer just outside DeKalb, Illinois, on a Saturday in November. He’s finished harvest and is spending his afternoon watching the Fighting Illini take on the Iowa Hawkeyes while thumbing through the latest copy of Progressive Farmer with his smart phone by his side.

So how does an ag marketer reach Joe, let alone get his attention? What story do you want him to take away? How will you know your plan is working? What are the opportunities? Some things to consider:

  • Message Frequency. This is a way to find the distracted. To paraphrase an old saying, if they don’t get it the first time, try, try again. Across channels. The goal is for Joe Miller to hear or see something that sparks his interest in the magazine or even during a commercial break during the big game, reach over to his smart phone or tablet and go online to find more information.
  • Right Message, Right Channel. Make sure the messages fit the channel. Keep it simple, clear and engaging. With all of the media channels and devices reaching Joe, the message execution should be appropriate to each channel and take him on a journey to the desired destination. For example, the ad Joe sees during the football game will not play nearly as well on YouTube as a pre-roll; or the direct mailer he received yesterday doesn’t really work as a print ad.
  • Test and test again. We live in a very dynamic and fluid marketplace. Testing and refining messages and channels is a must for any campaign to succeed.
  • Find White Space. Constantly monitor what the competition is doing so you can discover relevant places to show up where they aren’t. In other words, while they zig, look for ways to zag. You’ll find opportunities to reach your audience in unexpected places.

Media stacking and multitasking is not a new phenomenon. Keeping current with the way your audience is using all of the media channels, recognizing opportunities and measuring for success will go a long way in navigating your brand and message to Joe’s world.

Jeff Walter
About the Author – Jeff Walter

President/Chief Integration Officer. Jeff combines 20 years of client service experience with his deep knowledge and passion for agriculture, which stems from growing up on a corn and soybean farm in northern Illinois. He is a quick study of the brand, the customers and competitors, knows the right questions to ask, and with his oversight on planning and analytics, pushes the team to category-defining strategies and results-driven plans.


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Since 1978, the ag-marketing experts at Rhea + Kaiser have been helping brands connect with the farmer customer.

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