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Why you should be building a brand for your agri-business and tips on how to do it

If the events of Brexit and the Coronavirus pandemic have taught us anything it’s that you never know what is right around the corner. It is now more important than ever to futureproof your agri-business and prepare (as best you can) for any challenges that may come your way – which is why working on your brand is crucial.

Developing a brand can be key to turning your agri-business from an organisation that simply sells products or offers a service, to a successful business with a loyal customer base that will thrive even during the difficult times.

Why you should build a brand for your agri-business

It is no secret that creating a brand identity for your business is a great way to help to distinguish your organisation from others in the market and raise awareness of your products and services. However, in the age of smart phones and social media, going one step further and developing a strong online presence for your business is more advisable than ever.

With the latest mobile phone technology, consumers and agri-professionals are just a click away from finding out more about their favourite brands and stumbling across new ones. In fact, a survey conducted on behalf of the Irish Farmer’s Association (IFA) found that 84% of farmers own a smart phone while 82% use the device for news consumption. With the majority of people using the internet to keep up with news and follow their favourite brands, it makes sense for agri-businesses to develop a strong online presence or risk missing out on communicating with key audiences.

Connecting with your customers

Building a brand online not only enables you to reach your audience more efficiently, but it provides an easy-to-use platform for sharing your brand identity and news with current customers and potential future ones.  Using online platforms makes it much easier for you to gently and consistently communicate your business values, allowing your customers to get to know your business better and make them feel more connected – helping to generate brand loyalty and consequently driving sales.

The coronavirus effect

According to recent reports, a significant side-effect of the coronavirus on consumerism is an increase in customers wanting to buy locally. The recent study, by market research company Red C, found that 63% of consumers said they prefer to buy guaranteed Irish brands from local businesses when shopping during the coronavirus. With this in mind, taking the time to build your brand profile online could be very profitable if you’re looking to reach local markets. With consumers now actively seeking to support local businesses, having an online presence highlighting your business location, ideals and relationship with your local community can have huge sales benefits and build warmth towards your brand. This kind of warmth creates the best marketing technique for you – word of mouth.

Tips for building your brand

So, this all begs the question – how do you build a brand online? Below are some tips to help get you started.

  • First things first, do your research! Check out what your competitors are doing, how they are using their social media and also look into the habits of your target audience and what they engage with online.
  • Have a clear idea about what you want your brand identity to be before you get started as this will lie at the heart of all of your communications.
  • Define your key messages and keep these consistent across all channels – that includes your website, any social media and even a blog if you have one.
  • Make sure you use lots of attractive imagery and keep your posts engaging for your followers – make it relevant and interesting for them, rather than just talking about yourself
  • Keep posts interactive - social media is the perfect place to network, drive conversation and ultimately, sales.

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