In celebration of June Dairy Month, efforts by the National Milk Producers Federation to revitalize the REAL® Seal are taking a big leap forward this month. A new campaign is being launched that allows consumers to learn more about the benefits of real, American-made dairy products and foods made with them, using a new Facebook page, blogger outreach and digital advertising.
The REAL Seal Facebook page creates a new voice and visual feel to engage target audiences, especially moms and heads of households, encouraging them to buy dairy products and foods containing dairy products. The page’s content includes interactive updates, multimedia presentations, contests, polls, and quizzes. One of the elements of the launch later in the month will be a “Name the Character” contest for a new, animated REAL Seal cartoon character. It can be viewed on the REAL Seal website.
Reaching out to bloggers writing about the mom/parenting, food/cooking, health/wellness, and lifestyle topic areas will generate online conversation and awareness surrounding the REAL® Seal campaign and lead consumers to official REAL Seal web pages. In July, a special Buyer’s Guide section will be added to the REAL Seal website, where consumers will be able to go to find dairy products and foods made with dairy products that are using the REAL Seal, as well as restaurants that serve only REAL dairy products. REAL Seal users will have the option of providing links to their company’s website as well.
Want to learn more about New Holland products and services available to cattlemen? The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) is partnering with New Holland to answer producer questions about everything from field equipment, to maintenance, to quality haymaking.
Tune in as NCBA’s Cattlemen to Cattlemen goes LIVE from Denver, Colo., on Tues., May 21, at 8:30 p.m. Eastern on RFD-TV. This special live episode will allow viewers to call in and speak directly with New Holland representatives about a variety of topics.
The program will be broadcast again on RFD-TV Wed., May 22, at 10:30 a.m. Eastern and Sat., May 25, at 9 a.m. Eastern. In addition, all episodes of NCBA’s Cattlemen to Cattlemen are available on the program’s website. The show is also on Facebook and can be followed on Twitter.
Posted: November 20, 2012 at 11:34 am
By Cindy Zimmerman
This week marks the third annual AgChat #Foodthanks celebration, a time to reflect on the blessing of all the food choices we have in this nation. Farmers, ranchers, processors, butchers, bakers, chefs, grocers, truckers and more all make it possible for us to have healthy food on plates.
Today and tomorrow in particular, AgChat encourages you to show your #Foodthanks via social media. Twitter – Join our monthly #FoodChat twitter conversation Tuesday, November 20 from 8:00pm – 10:00pm ET. We will be talking #Foodthanks and of course the upcoming Thanksgiving celebration. Direct message @Foodchat any questions you would like to have included in the conversation.
On Wednesday, November 21st, continue the #Foodthanks conversation. Tweet your favorite recipe, farm blog or tell us why you are giving #Foodthanks. Show the Twitter world your #Foodthanks story.
Facebook – On Tuesday, November 20th, we will be hosting our first ever Facebook Party from 8:00 p.m. -10:00 p.m. ET! Similar to our traditional Twitter conversations, we will be engaging in a conversation that focuses on #Foodthanks. Make sure to join the community and show your #Foodthanks.
On Wednesday, November 21st, we will be asking you to share with us your #Foodthanks story. Share your pictures, blog posts and thoughts on your own personal #Foodthanks.
Pinterest – Join us now as we are pinning our #Foodthanks. Follow our #Foodthanks board and we will ask you to join our community and pin your #Foodthanks. Do you have a favorite food blog? How about grandma’s secret pumpkin pie recipe? Pin a picture showing how your family farm makes #Foodthanks possible. Join us on Pinterest now.
Posted: October 19, 2012 at 9:39 am
By Jamie Johansen
The image of agriculture throughout the United States is a fragile one. We have fewer people involved in production agriculture and that equals more consumers who don’t understand where their foods comes from. During the 2012 World Dairy Expo, Chuck talked with California diary producer, Ray Prock about the image in the non-farmer audience concerning agriculture and especially the dairy industry. They also discussed the role of social media in agriculture and how dairy producers are utilizing this industry changing tool.
“There is a huge need for this. Farmers have become more efficient. There ends up being fewer farmers out their in production agriculture. And we have more people in the cities everyday going to the grocery store who don’t know where their food comes from. It is programs like the Fuel Up To Play 60 that we created through the National Management Board and National Dairy Board where we are getting into schools. It is in 73,000 schools throughout the United States.”
“Students are getting leadership positions and helping their schools change their culture to become more fitness and nutritious minded and its not just about selling more dairy. Its about getting these kids to invest in their healthy lifestyles. And at the end of the day when they realize it was the dairy farmers that helped them get that culture change in their schools, they are able to realize that we are people too and we care about them too, especially the kids. There are stories of kids where their lives are changing because of programs like this. It takes these kids and gives them leadership abilities in school.”
Posted: July 18, 2012 at 3:54 pm
By Cindy Zimmerman
Watch out “Farming and I Grow it” guys – there’s a new kid on video and he just “maybe” the next YouTube sensation for agriculture. L’il Fred performs “Farm It Maybe” a parody of “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jepsen inspired by the now famous Kansas brothers’ video. Another great plug for dairy farming – be sure to check out the lyrics – here’s a sample:
And all the other farms
Are just as charming
What can I say?
That’s dairy farming
Are you bold enough to go with butter? “Go Bold With Butter” is a social media campaign of the American Butter Institute. Here’s how it’s doing. Note the results correlation between increased content on their blog and “fostering increased butter usage.” How about that blogging thing!
ABI’s social media campaign “Go Bold With Butter” was launched on March 19th, just before the Easter holiday. Overall the campaign is continuing to drive momentum and results so far shows that the campaign, which focuses on maintaining levels of positive consumer awareness of butter and fostering increased butter usage, is continuing to improve as content on the blog continues to build. Repeat visitors have increased, reflecting that the site is considered a good resource for recipes and information about butter.
“We are pleased with the results so far with this new emphasis on communicating the benefits of butter in home cooking recipes through social media,” said Mark Korsmeyer, President of ABI. We’re engaging more consumers with this effort and I expect it will help build the category in both the short and long term.”
Blog traffic continues to increase rapidly since the launch of the campaign, outperforming initial goals delivering over 98,000 visits in the month of June. Engagement metrics have continued to improve as content on the blog continues to build. This includes repeat visitors, and reflects that the site is considered a good resource for recipes and information about butter. The campaign’s Facebook page has 33,092 likes, which in an increase of 76% over May numbers. Facebook content has the potential to reach 11.3 million people. 95% of the Facebook page likes are in the key 25‐54 age target demographic. (more…)
One lucky fan will win the ultimate Madison experience with the World Dairy Expo 10K Ultimate Fan Giveaway. Dairy enthusiasts are invited to become fans of Expo on Facebook. Fans of Expo’s Facebook page are privy to the latest information, giveaways, including free tickets and official Expo gear, plus it’s an excellent opportunity to connect with other dairy producers and professionals from around the globe. The Expo Facebook page currently has fans from 64 different countries.
When the Expo fan page reaches 10,000 “Likes” one person will win an amazing package including a three night stay at The Madison Concourse & Governor’s Club during Expo. All Facebook fans over the age of 21 will be eligible to win. The prize package includes:
• Three night stay at The Madison Concourse & Governor’s Club – A King room in the exclusive Governor’s Club
• $100 shopping spree to the Purple Cow Gift Shop at World Dairy Expo
• $100 to Food Fight Restaurants – A collection of over 17 restaurants in the Madison
• $50 Gift Certificate for Downtown Madison area retailers
• Two World Dairy Expo Season Passes
• Madison Gift Basket from the Greater Madison Convention and Visitors Bureau
• Lunch daily at World Dairy Expo – Including the Expo Bistro, Badger Dairy Club Cheese Stand, GEA Ice Cream Stand and more!
• Preferred seating for the Supreme Ceremony on Saturday
Entry into this giveaway will be revealed when the page reaches 10,000 fans. The winner will be responsible for airfare and travel.
Posted: September 17, 2011 at 7:13 pm
By Cindy Zimmerman
The AgChat Foundation (ACF) and the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) have partnered up to help farmers and ranchers share their stories with the general public.
“The core vision of the AgChat Foundation is to empower farmers and ranchers to share their stories,” said Darin Grimm, Kansas farmer and AgChat Foundation president. “We are excited to partner with USFRA to build and expand those conversations”
The partnership is multi-faceted. USFRA recently sponsored the AgChat Foundation’s Agvocacy 2.0 Conference, which sought to teach farmers and ranchers about using social media platforms and other technology to share their stories with food consumers. USFRA has also committed to an additional sponsorship, which will further the ACF’s ability to have an impact on more farmers and ranchers from across the country.
Playing to their strengths, the AgChat Foundation will be a key partner in USFRA’s Food Dialogues event on September 22. The event, a simultaneous grouping of four live meetings around the country as well as online participation, will feature a series of different panels discussing different topics in key locations. The goal of Food Dialogues is to answer the questions that Americans are asking about their food. The AgChat Foundation will help engage the online agricultural community through a strategic social media campaign in order to build excitement in the weeks leading up to and during the event. To learn more about Food Dialogues, visit www.fooddialogues.com.
The Dairy Goddess couldn’t attend the AgChat Foundation’s Agvocacy 2.0 Conference she passed along a video link to share around and I found it via the conference Facebook page. It’s a great video and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
Here’s what the producer has to say about why he made the video:
So after watching a video a friend made about his “chicks” on his chicken farm(linked below). My friend Marcelo Alves and I decided we could not only make a similar video about my dairy farm but do it even bigger and better. So we decided to try and make a full on music video, and this video is the result.
The AgChat Foundation just held it’s second annual Agvocacy 2.0 Conference. This is a full program of social media training for farmers to learn how to use social networking to reach out to consumers.
At the conference I met Twitter follower and now friend in person. Here’s @DairyCarrie Mess and her husband.
You’ll notice that Carrie is wearing a New Holland shirt! That’s because the dealership she works at sponsored her participation in the conference. I talked with Carrie to learn what drew her to AgChat and using social media. I think you’ll enjoy hearing her story and it will encourage farmers to get started with social media if they haven’t already. As she puts it “If you are serious about being in agriculture you need to consider this as part of your job.”
Posted: May 31, 2011 at 8:39 am
By Cindy Zimmerman
The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) is turning to social media to get its message out about the Environmental Protection Agency’s potential regulation of coarse particulate matter, more commonly called dust. A new animated video, themed Over Regulation All Across the Nation, was launched today on NCBA’s You Tube channel.
NCBA notes that U.S. Representative Kristi Noem (R-S.D.) introduced, with bipartisan support, the Farm Dust Regulation Prevention Act of 2011 (H.R. 1633) that would block dust regulation by EPA in rural areas where state dust laws are in effect and the organization is strongly urging members to contact their Congressional representatives and ask them to stand firm for family farmers and ranchers by supporting this legislation.
Posted: November 19, 2010 at 3:33 pm
By Cindy Zimmerman
The AgChat Foundation has come up with a unique idea for you to use during this upcoming week of Thanksgiving. It’s called #foodthanks. It’s a way to show your thanks for the food we enjoy every day and the people who produce it.
So what you’re encouraged to do is go to the webpage where you’ll find images for your Twitter accounts and other web purposes. Tweet with the hashtag, #foodthanks, especially on November 24.
Remember that all this week is National Farm-City Week, always the week before Thanksgiving, to celebrate the important partnership between farm and urban residents in providing the nation with a bounty of food, fiber, fuel and a growing list of other other products. Chuck Zimmerman, president of World Dairy Diary’s parent company ZimmComm New Media, took part in a panel discussion to kick off Farm City Week held Thursday in Lancaster, PA. The panel addressed the urban media’s coverage of agriculture in the annual Farm-City Week Symposium “Agriculture: A Growing Story” and explored ways to promote the positive news about farming and ranching.
The symposium was broadcast live on AgriTalk and can be viewed here:
At the beginning of the Alltech Global 500 I participated in a presentation on social media and I’ve been overhearing farmers talking about how to use it for their farm. During a discussion dinner last night I met a dairy farmer who has been using it to drive business on his farm. He’s a great example for all farmers. He’s Carl Chaney (left in photo) and you can find his farm online at Chaney’s Dairy Barn.
Carl has a great story which I recorded this morning. Basically, his family operation decided to take control of their own destiny and diversify into processing their own milk, making their own ice cream and creating an agri-tourism component of their farm. So over the last couple years they have been using a website and now Facebook and Twitter to promote their business and Carl says they have direct evidence of how it has helped. This use of social media has helped them stay in the dairy business after they were considering getting out.
Besides driving business Carl says they are also helping educate consumers about where their food comes from. Sounds like he could be on the board of the AgChat Foundation! The farm conducts tours with a growing number of area schools. You’ll hear the pride in his voice when he sees kids marvel over a new calf or seeing a milking parlor in action.
Let’s just say that social media has been very, very good to ZimmComm New Media, publishers of World Dairy Diary. It is also the hottest topic in agricultural communications of the last year. At the Alltech Global 500 it was also a key topic during our morning general session.
I joined Alltech’s, Billy Frey, on stage to present what social media is and encourage and beef and dairy farmers to use these new channels of communications to help re-connect consumers with the farm and promote their own businesses. We used a series of slides and YouTube videos which I can’t show you but I did record our presentation. I said and will continue to say that dairy farmers seem to be some of the most engaged of any commodity group I know when it comes to social media.
Billy had some great quotes like the following:
Social media is the biggest revolution since the industrial revolution. It offers us new ways to stay informed and it can simplify information overload. It can fundamentally change agriculture if we use it.
We have a lot of great story tellers in our industry because we have the best story ever. Agriculture allowed civilization to develop. Before agriculture we were hunter gatherers. We have a great story to tell. We just have to tell it.
I can’t agree more. After our presentation a woman from France approached me to say that she “felt like I know you” since she is a regular visitor to World Dairy Diary. That kind of anecdotal evidence is great since it shows how truly connected we are globally thanks to social media.
Here’s a little social media marketing for you. It’s Yeo Valley Group’s rap video to promote their products. How many of you agribusiness companies are brave enough to try it? Thanks to Lindsay at Corn Scoops for the heads up.
I really like the name of their YouTube channel which is Yeotube.
Posted: September 30, 2010 at 8:50 pm
By Cindy Zimmerman
Dairy is more than just one of the basic food groups for Wisconsin-based communications and marketing agency Charleston-Orwig, it’s really the life blood of the firm.
That includes both the people who work in the company and the clients they serve, according to president Mark Gale. I interviewed him this week at World Dairy Expo in the agency suite overlooking the show arena. “We have people who grew up in dairy, people showing cows here, people who go home and work on family dairy, people very involved in agriculture. It’s not just their job, they are actually in the industry themselves,” Mark says about the agency’s team. The company has about 64 employees and was voted one of the best places to work in the state of Wisconsin last year.
The agency’s intimate knowledge and involvement in the dairy industry allows them to relate very well with clients like Alpharma, Arm & Hammer, Novartis and Hoard’s Dairyman – just to name a few. “We’re focused very much on agriculture and increasingly in the food industry, that kind of gate to plate segment, and the issues that agriculture and the food industry are facing now,” said Mark. About 85 percent of their clients are in the food and agriculture industries.
Mark says the agency business has made some dramatic changes in the past few years with the advent of social media and he is proud that Charleston-Orwig has been on the forefront of using these new tools to communicate. In fact, one of their first ventures into new media was sponsoring coverage of World Dairy Expo coverage by blog here on World Dairy Diary. Mark is also one of the founding members of the AgChat Foundation, which is dedicated to helping farmers and ranchers use social media platforms to connect with each other and advocate for agriculture.
BASF Plant Science has announced the winners to their NutriDense® Silage Web Moo.0 contest. Congratulations to Ashley Messing for winning the grand prize, registration and travel expenses to the first AgChat Foundation Agvocacy 2.0 Conference. Runners-up include Marianne Friers of New York and Nancy Grossi of California. Both will receive Flip Mino Cameras to help them put sights and sounds to their slices of the dairy industry.
The grand prize winner Ashley Messing, is a fifth-generation dairy producer in Michigan who agvocates on her personal blog, Facebook and @armessing Twitter account. With her blog post “Agvocating at its Best,” Ashley didn’t just tell us how she uses social media, she showed us. Here is an excerpt from Ashley’s entry:
“By the end of our conversation the daughter asked to get a photo with me because she said I wasn’t anything like she thought a farmer would be. She was going to show all of her friends and tell them all about her experience at Breakfast on the Farm. Honestly, these experiences make me thankful for all of the work I do. In these moments I see what we do pays off, all of the agvocating and communicating. It made my 6 hours of driving, both ways, worth the time and effort.”
Be sure to check out Marianne’s Northview Diary blog, which she created after writing a weekly farm column for her local newspaper. We thought her combination of old and new media shows how the dairy industry can use both outlets to spread its messages.
Nancy impressed us with her obvious passion for agvocacy, which she demonstrates daily on her Wife of a Dairyman blog, @wifeofadairyman Twitter account and Facebook page.