Telling your farm story through social media

The phrase “social media” keeps popping up among agriculture conferences this year.

Its great to see that farmers are trying to teach people how their food is produced. I love speaking on this topic because it gives me a chance to help farmers connect with their consumers.

The question I get at the end of every presentation is the same:

Where do I begin with this social media stuff?

Discussing Twitter basics at the Great Lakes Regional Dairy Conference

Social media is truly its own world. Through social media, agriculturalists have an opportunity to interact with not just each other but thousands of consumers at a time.

Ohio Farm Bureau put together a very helpful social media guide that covers several popular sites. This is by far the most comprehensive and easy to understand guide I’ve seen. I literally recommend it to everyone I know.

My personal advice is to start with Facebook.

Facebook has many advantages for social media beginners. It is relatively simple to understand and you only interact with people who you actually know/approve.

A great Facebook resource for beginners can be found at CNET.

Once you’ve mastered Facebook, I recommend trying Twitter.

Twitter is a micro blogging website that is made up of 140 character posts similar to Facebook’s status updates. It also requires a little more patience and can be confusing at first, mostly because of the confusing twitter lingo.

Once you conquer the language barrier you need to find people to follow.

For ag folks, a great way to start finding people is to use Follow Farmer. Follow Farmer is a list of farm and agriculture related twitter users who have asked to be listed on an ag only directory.

To be featured on Follow Farmer simply tweet a request to the Follow Farmer account. I would say something like “@followfarmer please add me to the follow farmer list. I am a beef cattle and showpig farmer from Kentucky.”

Once you’ve mastered Facebook and Twitter you’re ready for the big leagues: YouTube and blogging. But that’s another post for another day.

About Celeste

Celeste grew up on a family beef cattle and show pig farm in Western Kentucky. In addition to farming and life as a restaurant wife, Celeste owns Celeste Communications where she works as a photographer, graphic designer, videographer and consultant. This blog is Celeste's personal soapbox. Any ranting or raving is her own and does not reflect the opinions of any of her clients. All photos and posts are copyrighted property of Celeste Communications.

Comments

Telling your farm story through social media — 3 Comments

  1. Celeste,

    Thanks for the wonderful recommendation of Ohio Farm Bureau’s social media guide! We initially developed the resource for our members, but thought it would be good to share with anybody interested in using social media. It’s amazing how far it has traveled and all the good things we have heard about it!

    I’m glad you have been able to make good use of what you have learned and are able to share your message with other agriculturalists. Keep up the great work!

  2. Thanks for your initiative! Very timely and helpful. Keep it up. We dearly need people to organize and lead, before the hsus types run the show.

  3. Thanks everyone! So long as we keep working together and sharing our resources (like the Ohio Farm Bureau’s social media guide) we should be able to make great progress.

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