Takeaways from the 2016 NAMA Fall Conference

By Marki Landerud, VP/Partner, Account & Business Development Director

October 22, 2016

As an agency with a strong agriculture background, S&B is always on the lookout for educational experiences that allow us to learn more about some of our clients’ core target audience—the farmer. In September, the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) hosted their fall conference in Raleigh, North Carolina which included a schedule of education sessions that were applicable to both ag and consumer audiences.

I was able to attend six seminars in two days and walked away with three reaffirmations of what I already knew to be true, and five new facts about the agricultural industry:


What Was Reaffirmed

  1. Technology needs to help with business profitability. In order to sell a new piece of technology to a farmer (or other business) today, it is paramount that it is making a current business process smarter, easier and more precise and profitable. This is especially the case right now with the depressed commodity prices, as new offerings need to prove the value of the technology in order to overcome objections. Technology will continue to advance even with depressed commodity process.
  1. Data is still king and it’s how you use it that really matters. Whether you are an ag company or not, you likely have more data about your customers than you are aware of, and it can really help you fine tune your marketing effort. It is crucial that you are targeting your audience based on a multitude of factors, such as online behavior, interests, geography (if applicable) and buying habits in order to be as efficient and as effective as possible with your message and investment. This information will help you personalize your message and customize your offerings, allowing consumers to easily buy into something they truly want and need. Analyzing your business data and learning about your audience now and as they change will help your business continue to have the right message to the right group throughout these consumer transitions.
  1. Brand engagement is here to stay. Consumers expect to be entertained on their mobile devices and engaged on social platforms. Consumers expectations of how and where brands communicate to them have changed, and with that the days of only communicating via “traditional” mediums are gone.


New Facts We Learned – And Why They Matter

  1. Two percent of jobs today are directly related to food production (agriculture). This means that nearly three million people spend the majority of their day working a job in the agricultural and food production sector. That’s a large audience at stake.
  1. U.S. farmers generate 262% more yield with the same inputs as in 1950. Farmers have learned over the last century to adapt constantly, picking up any new tools along the way that help them do their jobs more efficiently, improving yields as the decades unfolded. New technologies have to prove their worth in order to considered essential.
  1. The iPhone 6 has the same processing power as the first space shuttle. That’s impressive, for one. It also means that the agricultural sector today has more gizmos and gadgets ready and willing to help out than ever before—and it’s hard to sort through what it truly a must-have and what just thinks it is. Being an up-to-date, reliable source of information to your customers is the number one way to keep them as customers.
  1. The average person spends 23% of their day checking email. But how much of that email is actually making it into the decision-making process? The messages you send to customers need to stand out from the crowd, not create more clutter.
  1. One out of every eight minutes spent online is spent on Facebook. If you think your clientele isn’t on Facebook, you might need to think again. Twelve-and-a-half percent of all time spent online is spent on the social media giant, and that number spans across age groups, geographical regions and livelihoods. Being available to your customers where they are already spending their time is a key way to stay engaged throughout the entire decision-making process.


Did you learn anything new out of the five facts above? Leave us a note in the comments, or email us at We’d love to hear from you!


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