To create a sustainable farm business selling products locally, farmers need to think about marketing options and develop a viable marketing plan. However, available farm retail marketing resources are hard to find, and many are outdated.
To address this gap in readily available resources, this project draws together successful market farmers who sell their products directly to consumers. Each of these farmers incubated their business through farmers markets, and now have a variety of avenues where they sell and promote their products. By connecting experienced growers; who have had great success marketing their products through traditional channels, as well as on farm events, and social media; with new and emerging growers, I hope to take some of the mystery out of farm marketing and customer development.
The farmers involved in this project live in Douglas, Todd and Ottertail Counties in Minnesota, and produce meat, eggs, fruits, vegetables, and value-added products. They will collaborate to create a marketing toolkit populated with resources that will help beginning farmers develop a marketing plan. Additionally, the farmers will sit on a panel to discuss marketing strategies at a regional event hosted by the Minnesota Farmers Market Association.
Project objectives from proposal:
- Create a grower profile that outlines business model and marketing strategies for all farmer partners
- Create a Marketing Toolkit, populated with resources and templates for beginning growers
- Create and present Facebook Live Events outlining Marketing Strategies
- Partner with Minnesota Farmers' Market Association to present a Grower Panel to address marketing issues, successes and failures
- Promote Marketing Toolkit, Grower Panel and Facebook Events through Media, Association Newsletters and UMN Extension Webpage to generate interest and access to resources
- Evaluate program to measure outcomes and impacts and to identify next steps