A good marketing plan is an essential element of a farming enterprise and should not be overlooked. Some would say it even ranks above production in importance, because a farm’s profitability is greatly influenced by their ability to consistently sell product throughout the season for a good price. It can be tempting to start production without giving much thought to marketing or where product will be sold. However, planning for this in advance of harvest will help you determine production levels and estimate your income. Keep in mind that marketing is not simply about selling but also having a clear idea of what consumers want and being able to deliver it to them for a profit.
- A great place to get started when thinking about marketing your farm, is ASAP’s Appalachian Grown Marketing Handout. This document provides general marketing tips and strategies, upon which you can build your farm’s marketing platform.
- ASAP’s Business of Farming Conference, held in February each year, features more than a dozen workshops by fellow farmers, buyers, and other experts. The conference lunch period includes opportunities to meet buyers (Grower-Buyer Meeting) and discuss potential matches between farmers’ products and buyers’ needs. If you have questions related to marketing and planning your farm business, attending this conference is highly recommended.
- Market your farm and product as local through ASAP’s Appalachian Grown certification and branding program.
- Connect with consumers using ASAP’s Local Food Guide.
- Connect with wholesale buyers through ASAP’s Wholesale Local Food Guide.
- When available, ASAP’s Appalachian Grown Cost Share can reduce the cost of promotional and marketing materials for your farm.
- Want to further your marketing prowess? Check out Mountain BizWorks educational and consultation offerings.
- An often overlooked component of marketing your farm is the ability to successfully tell your farm’s story. Review story telling techniques and identify what makes your farm truly unique: Donald Miller’s How To Tell a Story, NSAC’s Share Your Farm Story Tools and Tactics to Market Your Business and Connect with Media.