Getting Personal With Social Media

Getting Personal With Social Media

Christina HerrickThe business of fruit growing takes skills both in the orchard and out. You can grow the best fruit, in the most progressive ways, but you also have to be able to sell your produce. Increasingly, social media is a common way growers are successfully marketing their fruit. . When it’s done well, social media can be effective, even “viral,” which is a good thing in the social media world.

This month I’d like to highlight some of the creative marketing ideas I’ve noticed on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter from you, the business owners. Each one of these ideas is unique to their medium, but each post has one thing in common — they create a personal connection with potential customers.

Getting Creative With Facebook

(Photo credit: Tougas Family Farm)

(Photo credit: Tougas Family Farm)

I found this photo posted on the Tougas Family Farm Facebook page to be creative and memorable. It features a great idea from co-owner Mo Tougas’ son-in-law, Alan.

The caption on the photo reads “Alan was up early this morning picking CARAMEL APPLES off the caramel apple tree so he can bring them up to the Farm Store, YUM!” The caption also mentions which apple varieties are available for picking at the time of the post and lists other activities on the farm, the farm’s hours, and what else is available in the kitchen.

We’ve all seen photos of caramel apples, and this is a unique way to highlight a product that your farm sells, while catching the attention of your followers.

Promoting Things In A Different Way
Holmberg Orchard’s Twitter feed is filled with great photos and videos that typically push visitors to their Facebook page. Kimberly Schlapamn of Kimberly’s Simply Southern show on Great American Country network visited the orchard in late fall for a taping with third- and fourth-generation apple growers Rick and Russell Holmberg. She was nearby for a Little Big Town concert and thought the story of Holmberg Orchard was perfect for the show.

To help promote when the episode was going to run, the orchard ran a blooper reel from the taping that pushed Twitter and Facebook followers to YouTube (visit this link to view the video). In the blooper reel put together by the network, Russell Holmberg shows a more personal and goofy side. What a great idea to use extra elements from the TV crew’s visit to highlight the orchard.

“It was a fun experience and a fun day. I’m glad we did it,” says Holmberg.

Using The Medium To The Maximum

(Photo credit: Three Springs Farm)

(Photo credit: Three Springs Farm)

Ben Wenk keeps the Three Springs Fruit Farm Instagram feed fresh with apple art creations that are featured at the Silver Spring FRESHFARM Market. Whether it be an apple butterfly, turtle, or ladybug, each photo is a different and gives followers something to look forward to. Wenk also ties all the Instagram photos to Twitter, which is a good way to push his 2,500 Twitter followers to the farm’s Instagram account.

This photo features an apple owl, created by Shane Gladhill (pictured). The caption includes the hashtags #SilverSpring, #farmersmarket, #localfood, and #apple. Wenk also tagged the farmer’s market in the post as well. This idea is a great way to highlight the farmers markets where Three Springs Fruit Farm sells its produce.

Pinning To Win
Sietsema Orchard uses Pinterest as another way to connect with customers, highlighting products at the orchard market, orchard weddings, and even food pairings with the products they sell. Pinterest definitely reaches a different demographic of produce consumers than your Instagram and Twitter feeds.

The Common Thread
Produce buyers desire a closer connection with the people growing the food they buy and social media can help you reach your customers. As you can see from the examples above, what better way than to post videos, creative photos, and food pairings with your produce to make a personal connection with your consumers?