Communication and Marketing Focus in the Agriculture Industry

In this Advancing Ag Program, I am very grateful to have been paired with “the perfect fit” as my mentor. Ben Graham is very talented, knowledgeable and is recognized as an expert in the agriculture industry. Ben is the president of AdFarm, a top marketing communication agency throughout the agriculture industry, based in Calgary. Since the beginning of the program, we've developed a habit of meeting face-to-face once a month to connect and review our progress. Our first meeting was focused on the development of the five objectives I would like to achieve during this program, which are as follows:

  1. My first objective is to participate in the creation and implementation of a marketing plan on a product or communication project within AdFarm. I would like to learn about the strategies and tactics leading to value creation.

  2. As a second objective, I would like to apply what I will learn from objective 1 within my company. To do this, I started to work with one of our Product Manager on a marketing plan for a specific product.

  3. My third goal is to observe communication/marketing strategies and tactics at agriculture trade shows to understand how companies differentiate themselves. This includes message delivery, agswags, promotional material, brochures, etc. Ben and I have planned on attending AgriTrade in Red Deer together and comment on the marketing elements present at the different booths.

  4. In a fourth objective, I would like to understand the Key Performance Indicators (KPI) required for a communication/marketing plan and how to successfully meet them.

  5. My last objective is focused on career growth, more precisely understanding the different paths that leads to a Product Manager position. This includes the internal relationship to maintain within my company and clear communication with my direct supervisor. We will cover the career paths leading to a product manager position in both agriculture company (Corteva Agriscience) and agency (AdFarm).

After the development of this plan, I started its execution:

On September 12th, I attended an event organized by the Calgary Marketing Association (CMA) focused on enhancing the customer experience. I learned about how important it is to understand our customers, because it helps us make better decisions about how to communicate with them, and creates brand loyalty and advocacy.

On the topic of advocacy, I performed a public speech for the Ag for Life program “Agriculture 101” in Morinville on September 17th. Ag 101 aims to provide high school students with an understanding of where our food comes from and how it is produced with the respect of human health and the environment. I covered the need for crop protection products in Alberta, and addressed the differences between selective breeding and genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

Isabelle speaking at the Ag for Life progam

I am looking forward to pursuing this program, going deeper in the development and achievement of my main five objectives and growing as an individual with Ben Graham.

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