Farmers are busy. They simply don’t have time to waste on meaningless conversations. In light of this fact, it is important that no matter how long you have been in business with a farmer, every conversation must be as meaningful and mutually beneficial as possible.
One of the best ways to make sure that your conversations with farmers aren’t a waste of anyone’s time is to do your research before you pick up the phone or meet with a farmer in person. And in today’s digital marketplace, research involves data.
What follows are the types of data that will ensure that your conversations with farmers are as productive possible.
- Crop Type. Knowing the crops a farmer grows is critical since different crops require different products. Knowledge of a farmer’s crop rotation will allow you to present the type of products they require now-not last season or next season.
- Land Size. The size of a farm has a huge impact on the type of products a farmer requires. Small, family farms will need more help with things like distribution and inputs while larger or corporate farms corporate farms will be interested in products that can help them with things like automation, efficiency and scale. Further, when it comes to prospects, often the size of a farm will determine whether or not they are a viable prospect in the first place.
- Management. Some farmers manage their entire operation, others use a farm management service. Has a farmer you worked with in the past recently divided up some of their land and given it to a child, for example? Change can happen quickly so it is important to keep up-to-date on exactly who is in charge at all times.
- Networks. Not all farms are owned by a single farmer. One example is siblings who own a farm together. Data that shows how these owners work together or separately allows you to know exactly who you need to talk to and what you need to talk to him or her about.
Compiling data on the farmers in your territory-whether they are current customers or prospects-is critical. Without this information, you will waste a great deal of everyone’s time doing your research on the fly. This is sure to annoy the farmers you want to please and will likely lead to lower conversion rates.