Get Connected

I’m going to assume that if you’re reading this blog, you’re at least familiar enough with the Internet to know what Facebook is. More and more, people who weren’t “supposed” to be Facebook literate, are. They’re taking advantage of a great tool that is free, easy to use, and fairly efficient. One of the great ways to reach out is through the creation, promotion, and maintenance of a Facebook Fan Page. In the last year or so, there’s been a boom in ag-related Facebook pages, so I’m going to list a few of my favorites.

The pages are my favorites for a mix of reasons. Some are funny, some are well-kept, some are informative, and some are very socially welcoming. Overall, this blend of pages have some great content and interaction, and can be a wonderful addition to any newsfeed. They all vary in their focus and number of fans. These pages are listed in no particular order.

I don’t think you can talk about social media in agriculture, without mentioning Gilmer Dairy Farms. That’s because Will Gilmer is the Singing Dairyman, and he’s about as socially-savvy as they get. He manages to reach thousands and thousands of people with nothing more than a Blackberry. The videos he records are posted across Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. He’s a personal favorite of mine for information, entertainment value, and great conversation. (Will is a very personable guy, if you’re lucky enough to interact with him on Twitter via @GilmerDairy)

Maybe I’m biased because they featured my blog on their page. More than anything, though, I like the interactive way they tie agriculture into the everyday life of Americans. I also really like the way they draw users in by inviting the use for pictures and feedback. For a relatively new page, they’ve accrued quite an active following.

Because, in many cases, it’s true. Need I say more? Also, Midwestern Gold may or may not have found its way to their feed, which means I’m inclined to think they have pretty good taste. Alyssa, the admin, manages to toss agriculture facts and tidbits at casual readers. I personally think this is a great way to grab the attention of younger audiences. You may not be able to wrangle college kids into becoming fans of “serious” ag pages, but this can draw in some non-ag and present them with clues, wrapped in an attractive, if slightly inappropriate, package.

Farmers and ranchers face a lot of outside attackers these days, and this page exemplifies the need to stand up for one another and share stories. This is an incredibly important message to share, since consumers are becoming more and more disconnected from their food with every year that passes. Reaching out to the public and correcting incorrect negative stereotypes is vital to the survival of the industry.

Michele has been teaching people to “champion” their cause since before I’ve been using Twitter. She’s inspiring and very instructional. Her page has a unique way of getting users to interact. I could go on forever, but nothing I say could fully explain the admiration I have for this lady and her cause.

Self-explanatory. This page is for anyone who is a fan of Farmers.

I’ve done work with these guys on a local level and I love their work. They may not be the most overwhelmingly active page, but the work they do teaching Illinois children about agriculture is enough to make me a fan of their page.

A large fan following, a massive amount of interaction, great content, and a clear message make this page worth a look. It’s a well-run, organized page with plenty to offer any user, agriculture-savvy or otherwise.

These are just a few of my picks. Look out for more posts like this, since there are so many great Facebook pages including agriculture! Now, get out there, and get connected!

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