For any business looking to execute a successful content marketing strategy — one that truly moves the needle, leading to a larger brand following and, eventually, meaningful business growth — advance planning is key. And, especially for farming- and/or agriculture-focused brands for whom subject matter tends to be seasonal and cyclical, the need for advance planning can be even more impactful than it is for businesses of other types. In fact, here at The Brandon Agency, we’ll go so far as to say that, if you’re planning your farming/agriculture-related content strategy today for execution tomorrow — you’re likely already too late to see your efforts achieve peak effectiveness.
Looking to maximize your farming and agriculture brand’s content marketing plans and efforts? Consider these four powerful reasons it’s critical to get ahead of the game and plan your content strategy and content calendar well in advance:
1. It leads to more meaningful (and moving) content.
Planning in advance, of course, gives your brand more time to put added thought into its content strategy and the topics it chooses — which can help you develop more meaningful content that’s more likely to have a real impact on your readers. Make efforts to plan out your content as far in advance as possible — ideally working so far in advance that, topic-wise, you’re always looking into the next season. Not only will this give you time to think up new and unique approaches/angles to your content and topics to make them more interesting for your readers. It will also give you the leeway to jump right on any current events or trends that may develop and need immediate attention — all without falling off pace and out of rhythm. As a case in point for how thinking/working ahead can benefit your content strategy, consider a gardening/row crop example. By knowing far in advance what your future topics will focus on, you can capture plenty of images/footage of in-progress projects to enhance later, in-season content. It’s hard to prepare a gardening story in December for late spring gardens and crops — unless you’ve anticipated the need by planning/working in advance.
2. It helps you better anticipate your consumers’ needs.
By getting out your crystal ball as early as possible, you can get ahead of the upcoming seasons and better anticipate your readers’ needs and interests — each of which you can address in your content. When you do start your planning for future articles and posts, consider pursuing topics that:
- Evaluate trends in farming and agriculture
- Allow you to explore new farming and agricultural products within your brand’s articles and post (Note: Especially in the current business environment, keep an eye on the supply chain to ensure that any retail aspect of your business can deliver any products referenced in your content.)
- Get into the mind of your consumer, anticipating what types of farming- and agriculture-related products and pointers they are going to need in the next 4-8 weeks
Along the way, be mindful to plan for the entire process your readers will need to navigate. For example, don’t just show how to plant tomatoes — walk your readers through all the steps they’ll need to take along the way. And be detailed, as the consumers who are following you want to learn what you’re teaching them — otherwise they wouldn’t be following you. All the while, make sure your brand is available to answer any questions your readers may have, whether this is done via responses to comments on social media, direct messages, emails or any other avenue of communication. If you strive to become a reliable resource and source of expert guidance for your consumers, you’ll build stronger connections with them and begin to foster brand loyalty.
3. It can further your efforts to maximize your content’s impact and boost consumer engagement.
To maximize the effectiveness of each piece of content your farming- and/or agriculture-focused brand creates, it’s important to be mindful of ways to adapt and share the content on multiple platforms. These can include places ranging from your brand’s blog to its various social media platforms, its email newsletters and beyond. It can also be made significantly easier and more effective with advance planning of details such as where each piece of content will land, how it will be adapted for each platform and when it will be shared. Further, be careful to post at the right pace — another strategy that can benefit from careful advance planning. For example, suppose your brand has created an article and an accompanying series of social media posts on the best practices for preparing, planting, maintaining and harvesting a spring backyard garden. For peak effectiveness, you’ll want to strategically time your posts such that:
- Early posts land 4-8 weeks before the reader should start his or her process. These posts might include topics such as preparing the soil for planting, which crops work best in which conditions, tips for the actual planting process, etc.
- On-time posts land about a week before action is required by your reader. These posts might include simple tips for keeping pests out of the garden, proper procedures for watering, trimming and fertilizing plants, etc.
When creating and posting your content, be careful not to focus solely on the products your brand sells — rather, show readers how the product can most effectively be employed by integrating it into a story or post of consumer interest.
4. It can enable you to ramp up your — and your readers’ — creativity.
With thorough planning and high-level execution, your farming- and/or agriculture-focused brand can provide highly creative content for your readers — and even inspire them to get creative themselves with their farming- and agriculture-related projects. To most effectively catch readers’ interest and inspire your audience members to up their horticultural skill levels and creativity, all while spotlighting your brand’s offerings:
- Don’t just show and discuss your products; show the products in action and explain to readers how the products can be used to improve the results of their farming and agricultural projects.
- When explaining a process or best practice to your readers, show the audience the end result of the work — which can further motivate them to try the technique or product being discussed themselves.
- Assuming that the undertaking being discussed in your content is easy and fun, don’t forget to remind your readers of this fact on occasion. This is a great way to drive their passion for farming and agriculture … and hopefully their affinity for and loyalty to your brand.
Could your farming- and/or agriculture-focused brand use help developing its content calendar — and its content — well in advance to maximize the effectiveness of its efforts? With a wealth of experience in the farming and agriculture category, The Brandon Agency specializes in planning and executing successful content strategies — and amplifying the impact of brands’ overall marketing efforts. Further, TBA boasts high levels of expertise in a range of other mission-critical, content-related areas such as blog writing, vlog development, e-book and whitepaper creation, infographic and asset design, newsletter creation, case study development, and more. Contact us today to learn how our team of marketing professionals can help your farming and agriculture-focused business grow!