Ag Retail In The YouTube Age

With all due respect to the British New Wave band and one-hit wonder, The Buggles, video did NOT kill the radio star. Wounded, maybe, but not dead. And while I have my CSI detective hat on, I have real evidence that video also didn’t kill the print star. Proof of that can be found inside the pages of CropLife Magazine, which remains the heart and soul of the CropLife Media Group (CLMG). Ag retail’s most important topics and issues continue to be covered each month in the printed issues of this publication, including in-depth analysis by our experienced editors and leading industry experts.

But online video HAS carved a place in today’s mainstream media. With online video consumption growing at an astonishing rate, one should look no further than YouTube, the second-most-popular search engine. I’m convinced. I can’t tell you how many times I have gone to YouTube to watch a video I’ve heard about, then eight videos later I wonder where the time has gone? Or 15 videos later…or 30? Video is being used in so many ways and can be delivered anywhere your target audience is. To better understand the state of online video, consider the following statistics released from comScore, Inc., a leader in measuring the digital world:

  • In the month of December (2009), 178 million people watched 33.2 billion videos.
  • The average viewer watches 187 videos per month in the U.S.
  • Viewers tuned into 2 billion more videos in Dec. ’09 vs. Nov ’09.
  • The number of people viewing online video jumped nearly 20% in 2009.

CLMG has joined this video frenzy. CropLifeTV, video central on, shows coverage of industry events, interviews with top ag retailers, product demonstrations, and more. But regardless of whether you’re an ag retailer or a media company, it’s important to think holistically about how to incorporate video into your communications strategy. Here are 10 ways you can boost your business by using online videos:

  1. Welcome video. Consider putting a “welcome” video on your Web site. What better way to engage your Web visitors the moment they arrive on your home page than with a brief welcome message. This can establish an immediate connection and quickly build trust and rapport.
  2. “Quick tips” series. By posting video tips, you’re enhancing your expert status within ag retail, and establishing yourself as the “go-to” person for your grower-customers.
  3. Training videos. Using video as a training tool engages the participants, enables new techniques and practices to be shown in a short period, and standardizes the technical information disseminated to your employees and grower-customers.
  4. New employee orientation. Either professionally produced or employee generated – video is a great way to get new employees to listen and to understand. Using a video also means that every new employee will receive the same information. The employee can be shown the video upon being hired, leaving the managers free to work.
  5. Product demonstrations. You could create a video showing your grower-customers exactly how to apply crop inputs you sell, helping them maximize their yields. This would likely make them more inclined to renew orders the following season. Provide product-related information to aid use, including how-to for complex products that require training or further help.
  6. Events. Don’t leave the ag dealership without your Flip cam – or any portable camera that you can take to events and conferences. They are a great opportunity to capture what is going on in the industry and to communicate this knowledge with your employees and grower-customers.
  7. Testimonials. Of course, customer testimonials and video case studies have huge value as external marketing tools but don’t forget to communicate these valuable stories to your employees. Use networking opportunities to tape brief customer or colleague testimonials. Video testimonials are far more powerful than text alone.
  8. Virtual tour. A virtual tour is an easy, economical way to demonstrate to your grower-customers what your ag retail facility is all about. Showcase some of your key equipment, services, and products, while at the same time giving visual evidence that you respect the environment.
  9. Take advantage of YouTube. If hosting videos on your own server is not an option, consider YouTube. Essentially one big social network, YouTube is the most searched site after Google and just as easy to use. View one of the many tutorials on YouTube to learn how to create a channel for your business, subscribe to ag-related channels, upload videos, and even embed them on your own site.
  10. CropLife Video and PrecisionAg Video. View industry interviews, product reviews, and event coverage.

Leave a Reply

Matt Hopkins Stories

Ag retailer at computer
Matt Hopkins5 Lessons Learned From Launching An Agricultural Data Business
October 7, 2015
Like many other industries, agriculture has witnessed big data rocket up the corporate agenda. And as an ag media company, Read More
Ribbon cutting at 2015 National Farm Machinery Show
Matt Hopkins5 Key Takeaways From The 2015 National Farm Machinery Show
February 14, 2015
Celebrating its 50th anniversary, the largest indoor farm show in the country didn't disappoint with the latest in technology and trends on full display. Read More
12 Things You Might Not Know About The CropLife 100
Matt Hopkins12 Things You Might Not Know About The CropLife 100
February 11, 2015
These facts and figures about the top 100 largest ag retailers provide insight into our most popular list. Read More
Matt Hopkins5 Bold Predictions For Ag Retail In 2015
January 21, 2015
This past year was filled with ups and downs for the nation’s top ag retailers, but what will 2015 have in store? Read More
Top 100 Articles
CropLife 100United Cooperative Acquires Four ADM Wisconsin Facilities
November 12, 2015
United Cooperative, based out of Beaver Dam, WI, recently acquired four grain and agronomy locations from Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) Read More
CropLife 100BRANDT Car Makes NASCAR Xfinity Series
October 29, 2015
BRANDT will join JR Motorsports with driver, Justin Allgaier, for the 2016 NASCAR Xfinity (NXS) Series season. Allgaier will pilot Read More
CHS Building exterior
CropLife 100CHS Leaders Help Shape Succession Report
October 22, 2015
Succession planning was listed as a main concern of cooperative leaders at this summer’s 15 regional CHS owner town hall Read More
Fall Harvest
CropLife 100Pinnacle Purchases Eight Regional Seed Companies
October 12, 2015
Pinnacle Agriculture Holdings has announced the purchase of eight regional seed companies to advance its seed business. Pinnacle has acquired: Read More
MRM Agricultural Service
CropLife 100Pinnacle Acquires CropLife 100 Ag Retailer
October 8, 2015
Pinnacle Agriculture Holdings, LLC has successfully acquired the Missouri-based agronomy business of MRM Agricultural Service, LLC and its affiliates (MRM). Operating Read More
Eric Jenks, Wilbur-Ellis
CropLife 100Wilbur-Ellis Opens Dry Fertilizer Storage And Blending Facility In Washington
October 8, 2015
Wilbur-Ellis Co., ranked No. 4 on the CropLife 100, has constructed and opened a 22,000-ton dry fertilizer storage and blending Read More
Latest News
Palmer pigweed in soybean stubble
Herbicides‘Back to the Future’ Weed Control: Herbicide Outlook 20…
November 30, 2015
What’s new for herbicides in 2016? Well, not much, but the learning process is sure to continue for fine-tuning resistance Read More
Tim Hassinger Dow AgroSciences President and CEO
HerbicidesDow Expects Enlist Duo To Be Available For The 2016 U.S…
November 30, 2015
Relative to EPA’s recently filed motion to vacate the registration of Enlist Duo herbicide, The Dow Chemical Co. is confident Read More
HerbicidesBREAKING: EPA Pulls Registration On Dow’s Enlist …
November 25, 2015
EPA on Wednesday withdrew approval of a controversial new weed killer to be used on genetically modified corn and soybeans, Read More
FertilizerYara Tampa Ammonia Terminal Garners ResponsibleAg Honor…
November 25, 2015
Yara has received its first ResponsibleAg Certification for its Tampa, FL, Ammonia terminal location. This achievement demonstrates Yara’s commitment to Read More
ManagementReviewing The Top Ag Stories For 2015
November 24, 2015
Editors Eric Sfiligoj and Paul Schrimpf discuss the most noteworthy events from this past year in agriculture. Read More
EmployeesAgriculture Jobs May Be Plentiful, But New Grads Are Sc…
November 24, 2015
Close to 60,000 jobs are set to open up in agriculture each year for the next five years, but there's not enough grads to fill them. Read More
Radish cover crop
StewardshipCover Crops Guide Helps Growers Improve Water Quality
November 23, 2015
A publication that teaches growers the advantages of using cover crops to improve soil health and crop yields has won Read More
Crop InputsThe Andersons’ Products Receive California Organi…
November 23, 2015
The Plant Nutrient Group of The Andersons, Inc. announced today that its Humic DG and Black Gypsum DG products are Read More
Eric SfiligojNew European Study Seems To Support Glyphosate Safety
November 23, 2015
Looking at any international news over the past few years, it might seem as if the European Union (EU) is Read More
Toggle Biostimulant corn roots
Crop InputsTwo New Biostimulants Added To United Suppliers’ …
November 20, 2015
Winfield US announces the launch of two new products in the United Suppliers portfolio for the 2016 crop season, Optify Read More
StewardshipNRDC Report: Cover Crops Contain Vast Benefits
November 19, 2015
As harvest season ends and farmers in the United States ready themselves for winter, one small change could make a Read More
Fall Harvest
Seed/BiotechArysta Launches New Seed Protectant
November 19, 2015
As spring wheat growers begin planning for a strong start to their season, Arysta LifeScience North America announces RANCONA V Read More
Crop InputsInocucor Receives U.S. Patent For Microbials
November 19, 2015
Inocucor Technologies Inc., the Montreal-based agriculture biotech company, was issued patent No. 9,175,258 by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to protect Read More
ManagementSyngenta Rumors and ARA 2015 Preview
November 19, 2015
CropLife Editor Eric Sfiligoj looks at the latest rumors involving Syngenta selling its crop protection business and talks about events Read More
EquipmentAGCO Announces Finalists For Operator Of The Year Honor
November 19, 2015
AGCO Corp. has announced the four top operators chosen as finalists for AGCO’s 10th Annual Operator of the Year program, Read More
High Plains Aquifer
StewardshipStudy: High Plains Aquifer Overall Usage In Decline
November 18, 2015
A new Kansas State University study finds that the over-tapping of the High Plains Aquifer’s groundwater beyond the aquifer’s recharge Read More
Golden Harvest Corn healthy leaves
FungicidesArysta Launches New Corn And Soybean Fungicide
November 17, 2015
Arysta LifeScience North America has recently launched ZOLERA FX Fungicide. The highly systemic, powerful fungicide delivers broad-spectrum disease control with Read More
Young corn plants in soil
Crop InputsBioAg Alliance: Microbials Targeted For 250-500 million…
November 17, 2015
Monsanto and Novozymes have announced a new 2025 acreage target that will guide the companies’ microbials business for the next Read More