Ag Social Media ‘Rock Stars’ Encourage Farmers, Ranchers

A quartet of agricultural social media “rock stars” offered tips and encouragement to farmers and ranchers at a strategic engagement conference during the American Farm Bureau Federation’s 94th Annual Meeting.

“Social media allows us to be part of the conversation,” said Ryan Goodman, a cattle rancher from Arkansas who created the AgricultureProud.com blog and is a guest contributor to CNN’s Eatocracy blog.

“Consumers are already talking about what we’re doing on the farm and ranch. Through social media we can have direct access to people with questions,” Goodman said.

Ryan Goodman and Janice Person

Ryan Goodman and Janice Person

Zach Hunnicutt, a Nebraska farmer who was recently elected chairman of AFBF’s national Young Farmers & Ranchers Committee, explained that he is able to advocate for agriculture by “giving a tour of my farm every day using Facebook and Instagram“Be positive all the time, and be passionate when advocating for agriculture on social media,” advised Hunnicutt. “It draws people in,” he said.

Setting up a business page on Facebook for your farm is a strategy Janice Person of Monsanto recommends. Having a business page means your farm can be found on Internet search engines. And it addresses privacy concerns many people have—you can share family photos and stories only on your personal page, for example.

Zach Hunnicutt

Zach Hunnicutt

“Interacting on Facebook with people in your community, at church and with college friends is a great way to get started,” Person said. From there, interest in a farmer’s Facebook page often grows dramatically in concentric circles, Person has found. A Colorful Adventure is her personal blog.

“Be consistent with social media and you will build community,” said Katie Pinke, author of the Pinke Post blog. “Especially if you’re just starting out, concentrate on doing just one or two things well,” she added.

Pinke, who started her blog several years ago as a “lonely pregnant woman on the prairie trying to find friends,” offered encouragement to those in agriculture who may be hesitant to get started in social media. “What you do does not necessarily have to be fancy or flashy,” she said.

Katie Pinke

Katie Pinke

 All of the panelists have found that engaging in conversations on social media about non-farming subjects at least part of the time helps increase outreach. Cooking, recipes, kids, sports, music, travel and photography are among the topics they have successfully used for this.

All four of the panelists are guest bloggers at 94th AFBF’s Annual Meeting. 

6 thoughts on “Ag Social Media ‘Rock Stars’ Encourage Farmers, Ranchers

  1. Pingback: Social Agriculture: Social Media’s Role in Agriculture [Video] | Agriculture Proud

  2. Pingback: Ag Social Media ‘Rock Stars’ Encourage Farmers, Ranchers | Agriculture Proud

  3. Reblogged this on Agriculture Proud and commented:

    A big thanks to the folks at the American Farm Bureau Federation for inviting myself and friends Janice (@JPlovescotton), Katie (@KatPinke), and Zach (@ZJhunn) to share our advice with the crowd. It was a great experience to be a part of this panel and I look forward to connecting with others over food and farm topics in the future!
    –Ryan

  4. Pingback: The Waiting is the Hardest Part… | Farm Bureau Annual Meeting Blog

  5. I wish I could have been there! I spend every day working in social media in the agriculture industry and nothing beats sharing thoughts and hearing perspectives — and the four panelists here are among the best of the best! I’m sure they ROCKED.

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