Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Our Blog Has Moved!

Today was move day. This site has been a great place to learn and get started but we're on our own server now. Please bookmark the new address and remember to update your subscription if you've been getting our RSS feed! Although this site will stay here for now you'll only find new posts on the new site.

Here's where we are now: AgriMarketing Pros

Or, put another way:

See you in WordPress, our new blogging software!

Posted by: Chuck at 3:19 PM | |     | Permalink

Monday, March 14, 2005

Welcome To Our Newest Client - Valent!

We'd like to welcome our newest Talking News Release client. Valent just received section 18 exemption for Domark fungicide to treat Asian Soybean Rust in 28 states. So, working with Brandy Craig at Archer-Malmo, we produced a TNR that was distributed to reporters in our database in those states.

You can see the release here: Domark Fungicide Release

It appears that U-S farmers will now have some choices when it comes to fungicides to treat this new crop threat. We're getting close to warmer weather, especially in the south, so we should know more about how significant the problem will be soon.

Posted by: Chuck at 7:23 PM | |     | Permalink

Student NAMA Competition Heats Up

Future agrimarketers?

This is the Mizzou NAMA Chapter agrimarketing competition team. They'll be facing off against about 40 other college teams from around the country in April at the NAMA convention in Phoenix. Today they gave a preliminary presentation to the sponsoring professional chapter in St. Louis to be critiqued and get ideas and suggestions. They did a good job eventhough they had just completed their written presentation and hadn't really had time to rehearse for their "standup."

Posted by: Chuck at 7:19 PM | |     | Permalink

Sunday, March 13, 2005

New Ag Media Combination In The Sunshine State

Congratulations Gary & Robin!

Once upon a time Cindy and I were partners with Gary Cooper in a Florida communications company called SunStar Telecom, Inc. We started and operated several divisions including Southeast Agrinet, WTMC-AM, SunStar Network, AgStar Advertising and were doing pretty good until the government took over the savings and loan company that was financing us. That's a story from the past now. It's also one of the reasons I'll never drink a Killian's Red beer again. But that is also another story.

We're proud though of what Gary and Robin have accomplished since then with Southeast AgNet which just announced their purchase of an agricultural publication. Here's the scoop:

AgNet Publications Inc., a sister company to Southeast AgNet Inc., has purchased 85-year-old Citrus Industry Magazine and Citrus Expo, making Southeast AgNet, Bartow, Fla., the only combination agriculture media enterprise in Florida. Southeast AgNet is owned by Gary Cooper and his wife Robin Loftin, director of sales and marketing.

Associated Publications, owned by members of Bartow's Frisbie family sold Citrus Industry Magazine, one of the oldest agriculture publications in the state. The Frisbie's started the publication in 1920 and will continue to operate their core business at Bartow Printing Company.

The purchase also includes Citrus Expo, the world's largest citrus trade show held annually in August at Lee Civic Center near Ft. Myers. With immediate plans to become involved in the sales and marketing aspects of the magazine, the first issue to be published under Southeast AgNet ownership and direction will be the May/June issue. AgNet will assume operation of Citrus Expo following this year's Aug. 24-25 event, and meanwhile will work hand-in-hand with this year's Expo planning team.

Ernie Neff will continue as editor of Citrus Industry Magazine and Bartow Printing Company has been contracted to continue handling design, printing and distribution services for the new owners of the magazine. "We're excited to put these two Florida-based companies together, and look forward to continuing the excellence in journalism growers have come to know from this magazine for the last 85 years. We feel the relationships we've built in the industry will only add depth to the news and information on research and industry trends and issues, and the multimedia aspects of this combination will offer advertisers unique and effective cross-promotional capabilities " said Gary Cooper, president of Southeast AgNet.

ZimmComm produces several daily programs for Southeast Agnet, which are produced and voiced by Cindy.

Posted by: Chuck at 12:49 PM | |     | Permalink

Friday, March 11, 2005

Positive Press For AgriMarketing Pros

It's nice to see that what you're doing is noticed. Especially when you can learn from it. Since we started this blog site we've been critiqued and many of the changes for the better have come from people who notice and care.

For example, Robert French, who teaches at Auburn University and has a great blog of his own at InfOpinions, just wrote a follow up piece about our site/service which you can read here: Metamorphosis.

He brought another article about ZimmComm to my attention on WebProNews, written by Wayne Hurlbert. You can see it here: Podcasting Is Music To The Ears. Wayne has his own blog - Blog Business World.

Thank you guys. We're trying to get a handle on this whole blogging/podcasting thing. More to come . . .

Posted by: Chuck at 9:32 AM | |     | Permalink

Thursday, March 10, 2005

New Client - AGCO

I'd like to welcome AGCO to the list of companies that are using Talking News Releases!

We just sent out the first in a series of releases for them. You can see the first one here: Spray Guide Release

We're working with AGCO through a great agency located in MN - Broadhead + Co. Thank you Dean Broadhead!

Posted by: Chuck at 6:00 PM | |     | Permalink

Have You Read Your AgriMarketing?

The March issue is out and it's all about "Connecting To Rural America." I wrote an article on blogging in it which you can read online if you don't get the magazine.

There are other good articles as usual. You'll notice a reference to the fact that Becky Rasmussen has moved on. I know she'll be missed at the magazine but she's now working for Steve Drake at Drake & Co. on the National Christmas Tree Association account.

Posted by: Chuck at 5:49 PM | |     | Permalink

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

The Difference Between TNR's and NAFB's NFBS

What’s the Difference Between TNR’s and NAFB’s NFBS?

This is one of the questions we are asked most often by ag related agencies and companies, right after “can we track who uses our releases?” I’ve been meaning to write about it for a while as a way to help answer the question.

TNR’s are our Talking News Releases, which are basically news releases with audio. NFBS is the National Association of Farm Broadcasters’ National Farm Broadcast Service.

The short answer is - the differences are significant.

First let me point out that both Cindy and I are current members of NAFB and have been so since the early 1980’s in one capacity or another. Currently, Cindy is an emeritus member of NAFB and I am an associate member. Both of us have been voting members in the past and we highly support the organization and believe NFBS is a valuable service to members.

Having said that, here are the primary differences between our service and NFBS:

NFBS is a member service and a passive system. It’s only available to NAFB Broadcast Council members by password. Members have to log into the website where they’re presented with a menu of story/news release options. Members can choose to download audio and story information. It was originally intended as a system for members to share story ideas and audio. Some of the information is contributed by members but most is regularly posted information from major information partners like NCBA, ASA and others. There are approximately 140 NAFB members who can choose to log on to NFBS to peruse the offerings and download audio they might want.

Talking News Releases is a push through production/distribution service of ZimmComm, a privately owned company. We work with our clients to produce an electronic news release that contains hyperlinks to audio files. We then email that document to reporters in whatever area is selected. Reporters get it delivered to them where they can easily use it immediately or archive for future use. ZimmComm has over 2,800 radio news reporter email addresses, which includes all NAFB members. It can be sorted by a number of parameters including state. In addition, we’ve created commodity area groups to make sending commodity-specific material easier.

We’ve received very positive feedback from NAFB members who really like the information we send them and the quality of the audio. They also like it that we often are able to make sure the releases we send are written in broadcast style, which makes using the release much easier for them.

Additionally, non-NAFB radio reporters provide us with the same feedback! As you know, there are a lot of local radio stations. Radio news reporters in a rural area where agribusiness is vital to their local economy are likely to use an ag oriented release if it pertains to their area.

We believe it is important to include non-NAFB members in the distribution of ag-related news releases for two reasons.

First of all, NAFB members simply do not cover all areas of the country where agribusiness is important. That’s just a fact of the radio world today.

Second, it is vital to keep the non-farm public informed about agriculture and its importance to the U.S. economy and livelihood of our country. I find it interesting that some of our larger commodity groups seem to think that their information should ONLY go to farm broadcasters, that non-farm broadcasters would not be interested. Fact is, it all depends on how it is packaged. Granted, a station in downtown Miami might not care about a new fungicide to control soybean rust, but they might very well be interested in how a new trade agreement would affect the farm economy and ultimately the economy of the South Florida area! That is why we strongly urge the use of TNRs to make the non-farm audience part of your overall public relations strategy.

I also encourage NAFB to conduct more outreach to these radio stations and their news directors to encourage more regularly-scheduled farm programming and more regular attention to farm stories (okay, so maybe not the stations in downtown Miami!) But, the fact is, there are many reporters scattered around the countryside who regularly report agricultural news who aren’t or can’t be NAFB members due to the organizations’ current membership requirements.

I’ve been in literally hundreds of radio stations in my career all over the country and I can tell you that if they have a news department, a good story is a good story even if it’s about agriculture.

I hope this answers the question and I’d welcome comments and feedback.

Posted by: Chuck at 7:07 PM | |     | Permalink

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

A Blogging Broadcaster

I'm proud to point you to a great farm broadcaster who's embraced the blogosphere.

She's Cyndi Young and she's the Farm Director of the Brownfield Network.

Cyndi just went on the Valley World Tour with another former farm broadcaster and good friend Kim Lang who is now the Valmont Irrigation Communications Director.

Cyndi not only sent in reports for Brownfield programming but is also using the blogging tool.
You can see what's she's posted on their website here.

Posted by: Chuck at 3:16 PM | |     | Permalink

Blogging Articles To Read

Probably many of you already subscribe to AgriMarketing Magazine.

In case you don't they have a good website and online versions of the magazine. In a bit of shameless self-promotion you might want to read this article in the March Edition. I kind of like the author. There are other good articles including one written by my good buddy Steve Mays.

I also just had another article pointed out to me in the WSJ. You can find it here.

Blogging is a great tool and I know the agribusiness world will embrace and use it. I'm scheduled to make a few presentations to agencies on blogging and Talking News Releases in the next month or so. Consider putting me on your calendar. My fee is reasonable!

Posted by: Chuck at 3:06 PM | |     | Permalink

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