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Do you have weeds in your bean fields?

Agriculture.com Staff 09/10/2009 @ 2:16pm

A recent conversation with a farmer had him painting a very vivid picture of his farm operation and, in particular, how his fields look. He is proud of the fact that his fields are extremely clean and that his barnyard is immaculate. What came through was his pride in his efforts to be a good farmer. If people were to visit his farm operation, they would be impressed with how efficient, neat and clean it is. However, when the subject changed to marketing, he suggested that, if you could envision a bean field full of weeds, that is a metaphor as to how his marketing looks.

How does your marketing field look? Undoubtedly, you have pride in your production capabilities. You take care of your machinery and facilities with the utmost care. However, with marketing, because you cannot always see what your expected results will be or you wait to gather enough information to make decisions, there is a significant amount of uncertainty. Uncertainty can create indecision, which causes inaction and, often in marketing, lost opportunity. Other items that create or cause indecision are a lack of knowledge of marketing tools, not enough time spent marketing, and the lack of discipline to pull the trigger - especially at good prices when you know you should be selling more. Second-guessing is commonplace amongst producers. If you are doing this, you are not alone.

So what is the solution? We encourage farmers to think strategically and approach farm marketing with the sense that marketing can be done well. As farmers, the general thought is that you are price takers, and you have no control. There is some truth to this, but it is not totally true. There are many avenues to help control your marketing destiny. The key is to build knowledge and have the discipline to execute strategies that work for you. Being able to do so in a manner that allows you to sleep comfortably at night, without second-guessing your decisions, is a sign you are in control of your marketing.

Marketing can be done well, and your marketing field can be mostly free of weeds. It may never be totally weed-free, but there are tools and resources that you can utilize to create a more productive environment that produces greater confidence in your marketing results. Taking the same time and care with marketing that you do with your production can, and does, produce strong results.

If you have questions, comments or would like information on how to gain marketing confidence for your farm operation, contact Bryan Doherty at Top Farmer, 1-800-TOP-FARM extension 129.

A recent conversation with a farmer had him painting a very vivid picture of his farm operation and, in particular, how his fields look. He is proud of the fact that his fields are extremely clean and that his barnyard is immaculate. What came through was his pride in his efforts to be a good farmer. If people were to visit his farm operation, they would be impressed with how efficient, neat and clean it is. However, when the subject changed to marketing, he suggested that, if you could envision a bean field full of weeds, that is a metaphor as to how his marketing looks.

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