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How Facebook can help Agribusiness Owners

Social media has so much power and have proven overtime to be a useful tool for many businesses nowadays. By design, it is a tool for connecting people. Several businesses have been doing just that; connecting with their various customers, telling stories that will evoke emotional responses and at the same time also providing valuable information.
Among the different social media platforms that exist, Facebook is one of the world’s most popular social networking website as it makes connecting with friends and family easier. Pictures, videos and websites can be shared on this platform and it also allows users to create a profile, add friends, send messages and join common interest groups.

Facebook is indeed almost indispensable to a business’s marketing strategy. It has been embraced by businesses, governments and organizations as a marketing tool. Why so? This is because Facebook has become so popular among the general population with people from all over the world and the added fact that it is free (except for ads and promoted posts).

As a result, people no longer need to meet up with each other in person to share opinions about a product purchased or experiences; all of these can be done online with the added benefit of a larger audience.
For agribusinesses, there is the advantage of these aspects with the added benefit of being free (or low cost). The largest cost to you will be the time you spend creating and maintaining your Facebook presence. This article will describe how you can utilize Facebook to market your agricultural business and products as well as how it can help your business.

How Facebook can help Agribusiness Owners

Agribusinesses can utilize Facebook in a variety of ways for marketing purposes. Many benefits lie here and they include:

Maintenance of contact with customers and the public

Through the posting of status updates, photos and videos and links, individuals with interest in your business can get to know what’s going on at any point in time.

Advertisement

You can advertise your business, products and events on Facebook. For example, if you own a farm market and you have a special sales day, on your business’ profile page you can create an event posting.
Another way to advertise is by developing paid advertisements. Before creating your advertisement, you have to know your objective. For example, do you want to boost a post, promote your page, reach people near your business, send people to your website or raise attendance at an event? In essence, know what you want to advertise. Other aspects necessary are your audience, where you want the ad to appear, the budget and of course the visual side (where you choose the relevant image/video for your ad depending on the objective you chose).
Information sharing

For keeping people up to date on what’s happening within your industry or perhaps to share helpful tips on how to use the products you sell, Facebook is your go-to. This is made possible through its ability to post and share links and create notes and discussions. For example, if your agribusiness is centered on corn production and sale, you could provide step to step instructions on how to freeze corn. This is good strategy for better business.

How Facebook Groups Grow your Agribusiness Venture

To grow your agribusiness venture, know that you need Facebook pages and groups because both can boost your Facebook marketing efforts.
Some farmers in East Africa have wisely utilized this tool as they have created numerous groups. This has helped them connect with one another to share ideas across the agribusiness community.
In as much as` there are Facebook groups organized around causes, events and social groups; there can also be groups for agribusiness owners to connect with their customers and followers, or colleagues in professional organizations.

They add Value

There are different ways by which Facebook groups can add value to your agribusiness venture.
They help you build community: By so doing, there is easy flow of information. Information is paramount and having the right information at your fingertips could open doors. By being connected, agribusiness owners can learn from one another, find new products, share innovative ideas and create awareness.
They help you promote your product: whether you just harvested a farm produce or have a livestock to sell, you can post them on Facebook and inquire if anyone is interested in buying. You would be surprised by the number of persons interested in what you’re selling.

Keeping you organized

whether it be for community building or the promotion of a product, they are indeed very useful. They also possess certain in-built features that can make groups even more powerful. If for instance you want to organize an agribusiness training event for your group; to know the type of training members are interested in, you could use the “Questions” feature to poll members about what they prefer asking them to choose from a list of options.

After settling on the type of training to host, use the “Create Event” feature on Facebook to schedule it and collect RSVPs. You can post files that you’d love to share with your group members too. These could be in the form of documents or presentations.

How Does Facebook Work?

Know that before you can use Facebook as a tool in your marketing plan, you of course need to create a Facebook account and profile. If you already have an account and are ready to create a business profile, you’ll be faced with the decision to either create a “Group” or “Page”. Both appear to be the same but have some key differences which result in Pages most at times lending themselves better to businesses for marketing purposes. The differences include:

#1. Search capability:  Unlike groups, pages are indexed by external search engines such as Google, just like a public profile.

#2. Posts: Pages create content that come from the Page itself so it’s not linked to you personally. For groups however, as a group administrator, posts appear to be coming from you and are attached to your profile profile.
Even as you become more serious with Facebook, you can import blog entries into the Notes application. This allows you to leverage your blogging efforts. Also, it is possible to share your Facebook presence with a personalized URL.

If you want to use Facebook as a marketing tool for your agricultural business, you need to stay current on the features and capabilities of Facebook. There are a lot of benefits inherent in Facebook for you and your business.
Your agribusiness can indeed be grown exponentially, only try Facebook!

By Olatinwo Dayo

Olatinwo Dayo is a Passionate Blogger, Freelance Content Writer, and Rabbit Farmer. His work and articles have been featured on Weobserved, Tutorials Learn, AndroRoot and Naijaloaded.

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