I’m sure some of you have heard the terms “Big Data Agriculture” and “Precision Agriculture” thrown around the showroom over the past few years. While the idea of data might bring up thoughts of pocket protectors and spreadsheets — it isn’t that out of place in farming.
Data analysis is simply the collection and study of outcomes, to form a better performance when an experiment is repeated. When your farmers try a new fertilizer, then compare that crop to last year’s, they are practicing data collection. The Old Farmer’s Almanac is proof that farmers have been some of America’s most stubborn data analysts for almost 225 years!
What makes this new wave of data collection “Big” is the scale at which young farmers are doing it. In one field, farmers are collecting extensive data on fertilizer, weeding schedules, wind speed, rainfall and a million other variables. With a fine understanding of every variable (and the relationships between them), a farmer’s solution to a problem can be much more precise. This is where the new wave of Precision Agriculture is born.
As an agricultural equipment dealer or manufacturer you may be thinking, “Measurements in the field sound great, but what does it have to do with me?” You’d be kind of right. When that tractor wears out, you’ll be there to replace it. But what might you learn from your own customers?
The goal of Big Data Agriculture is efficiency. Farmers are working harder and harder to produce bigger harvests with less water, less seed and less land. They’re focusing on making their equipment last longer and their repairs more permanent. Agriculture is no longer about setting a goal for this year’s harvest, it’s about the next three years’ harvests or the next decade’s. Data and forward thinking are changing the way America farms. Should it change the way we sell to farmers?
The advertising industry is crowded with “three piece suit and Scotch on the rocks” advertisers. Large firms who make grand guesses of how their campaigns will bring in revenue, and then shrug off their mediocre numbers at the end of the quarter. It’s this school advertising that lead to the age-old mantra, “Half of my advertising works, I just don’t know which half!”
Kirkpatrick Creative is different. We run every variable on every ad through our proprietary analysis software — much like your farming customers — so at the end of each campaign we have the knowledge to insure the next one is even more successful. We’re interested in doing honest work for honest pay, which has bred a more “blue jeans and black coffee” approach from our office.
There is a lot of inefficiency in agri-business. Manufacturers are setting aside co-op dollars for dealerships, which aren’t getting spent. Short line products are being ignored. Manufacturing territory reps are being relegated to advising dealers about advertising — a lot of time, money and energy are being wasted due to a lack of communication between manufacturers and dealerships.
Kirkpatrick Creative has developed a series of digital advertising methods to help alleviate the tension between manufacturers and dealers. We’ve helped Reinke territory reps refocus on selling equipment and found creative ways for Rhino dealers to spend their short-line co-op dollars. Over the next several weeks, we are going to share our digital attack strategy with you.
On one side, the farming industry has changed. On the other, so has advertising. As the middlemen, dealers and manufacturers can’t afford to fall behind, simply because their methods couldn’t keep up. Take charge of your business’ future, and sell more equipment!