Most of the time, the first thing that comes to mind when farmers and ranchers hear the word “branding” is a cattle brand. Whether you think of a freeze or hot brand, the term brand goes hand and hand with livestock operations across the country. Some brands, like the brand of the King Ranch, is nationally recognized and highly revered in the livestock and ranching industry. Even Ford Motor Company took notice and produces a line of trucks baring the King Ranch brand.
While branding cattle is important, let’s talk about branding in the larger sense. According to the American Marketing Association, branding includes a name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller's goods or services as distinct from those of other sellers. Think of your brand as a direct reflection of your business when you aren’t in the room. You can’t be everywhere, but your branded materials can let your presence be known.
A branding strategy includes all the tactics and planning that go into increasing brand recognition and reputation. Both tangible and intangible elements go into a branding strategy. A brand isn’t just a logo and graphics; it’s the emotional connection that a person has with the brand. Think about some of your favorite and least favorite brands: you probably react positively or negatively to branding from various companies.
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Tangible and Intangible Branding
Branding is typically thought of as its tangible, visual elements. A logo and color scheme can say a lot about a brand, and various colors can evoke specific ideas and emotions. Green, for example, is thought of as the color that represents growth, while purple tends to communicate luxury. Having a professional, timeless logo is a must. Your logo needs to be memorable but also legible, tasteful, and simple.
Less tangible is the emotion that people attach to a brand. Cultivating brand loyalty is an example of intangible branding. Think red vs. green tractors: on some farms, you can see fervent loyalty to one tractor color. Your logo or color scheme alone isn’t your brand; it’s the representation of the emotional connection your audience has with your brand and the persona of your business. Every action you or your employees take, whether positive or negative, is a direct reflection of your brand.
Change the way you think about your brand.
Changing the way you think about branding can take your farm’s brand to the next level. To have a brand that represents quality and trustworthiness, you must take a step back and look at what needs to happen in your operation for people to associate your brand with quality and trustworthiness. For example, this might involve changing your code of conduct, implementing a dress code to create a more professional look, or doing more to go above and beyond for your landowners.
Branding isn’t just about a logo to put on trucks and a t-shirt. That logo is a direct reflection of your business and your farming practices and an integral part of marketing your farm. Even if you don’t have a logo, you have a brand. It is up to you to own it and craft it into a valuable representation of your business.
Branding Help from Agriculture Experts
FamilyFarms Group specializes in helping medium-sized and large farms meet their goals and improve profitability with training, resources, networking, and expert advice for succeeding in the modern agricultural marketplace. If you’d like more information about how FamilyFarms Group can benefit your farm, click the link below to request a free needs assessment.