Thought Leadership Blogs

Start Less, Stop More

Societies around the world have long viewed the start of a New Year as a time for transformation. A time to reflect on what is and what could be, and intentionally start living the latter. Unfortunately, statistics don’t paint a pretty picture for the success of these endeavours as a staggering 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail*.

While research suggests that this rate of failure is attributable to many factors, from setting unrealistic goals to having unrealistic expectations, one of the main issues I’ve seen with this practice is prioritization (or lack thereof). As someone who has been an avid Gym-goer for decades, I inevitably see the influx of new members every year in January, only to see these numbers dwindle to a select few by the time spring hits. And the biggest reason for this, based on the many conversations I’ve had, is time management. 

More specifically, most new members under-estimate the time commitment required to exercise frequently and simply tried to fit it into their existing schedules without giving anything up. And there’s the crux of the matter. Trying to do more without committing to less.

As agri-marketers, we fall into this trap all the time. Especially as new technologies, techniques and innovations permeate our world and demand time and budget that may already be spread too thin. Like the New Year’s resolutionists, we simply tack on more without taking a hard look at what we should be doing less.

While I’ve long since forgotten the book and author that the statement came from, I have always loved the concept of “for every new thing you do, try doing two less”. This extreme commitment to prioritization has shaped my efforts in both expected and unexpected ways and could do the same for you.

Firstly, by forcing yourself to commit to abandoning certain efforts every time you bring on a new one, you will become much more selective in determining which “new things” you can and should try. This will help force you out of the habit of trying things without proper due diligence on their feasibility and desired/expected impact.

Secondly, by having to commit to abandoning existing efforts when you want to bring on new ones, you will become much more diligent in the discipline of performance measurement. For example, if you do commit to stopping two existing efforts for every one new one you bring on, you’ll want to know which existing efforts are and aren’t performing as desired so that you don’t abandon something that’s working and/or keep something that isn’t.

And lastly, given both of the above, you may find as I have that you will become much better at saying no in general. That by taking a more critical and intentional approach to prioritizing your efforts, you will more naturally avoid unnecessary commitments and give up less of your time than you once did. As Steve Jobs once said “I’m actually as proud of the things I haven’t done as the things I have done. Focusing is about saying no.”.  

So, as you start a New Year of agri-marketing endeavours, I wish you the greatest success, and more importantly, hope that it comes through less time and less effort than it did last year.

David Lazarenko,
Partner/Group Account Director, Think Shift

*Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/kathycaprino/2019/12/21/the-top-3-reasons-new-years-resolutions-fail-and-how-yours-can-succeed/?sh=788895e46992

CAMA’s new National Sustaining Partner Program adds AdFarm to list of supporters

AdFarm has been a member of CAMA’s Alberta chapter since its inception. Proud of their longstanding membership and supporter of the organization, AdFarm signed on to the National Sustaining Partner Program as soon as the new program was announced.

“As a company, we’ve enjoyed the benefits of a CAMA membership – from networking and personal skill development, to profiling our client work and even recruiting,” says Ben Graham, President, AdFarm. “And now we’ve signed on to help ensure the progression of CAMA, with a goal to increase the effectiveness of the organization, members and affiliated ndustry organizations.”

The only professional organization dedicated to the Canadian agri-marketing and food industry, CAMA is well known for its professional development opportunities, networking and leadership. The new National Sustaining Partner Program will help CAMA raise the bar on programs and activities to drive the industry.

“CAMA has an opportunity to truly be a leader in enhancing and progressing the quality of people, and subsequently the work in the ag and food communications field. There is a need in many provinces for leadership and career enhancement, and CAMA can fill that need,” says Graham.

A highlight for many members is the Best of CAMA. Graham believes such a unique event offer members the opportunity to view and gauge the quality of work within the industry. The annual event also offers members a platform to profile their work and network to build valuable relationships. “A membership in CAMA has endless opportunities, I know it has certainly been a benefit to AdFarm,” he says.

Glacier FarmMedia Partners with CAMA’s National Sustaining program

For as long as anyone can remember, Glacier FarmMedia has been involved in CAMA. From serving as board members of local chapters and at the national level, to hosting and attending events, the Glacier FarmMedia team is committed to the organization. And now, Glacier FarmMedia has signed on as a National Sustaining Partner to ensure CAMA can continue programming and industry leadership.

“Thank you to the CAMA national board members and Mary Thornley for inviting us to be a founding member. As Glacier FarmMedia continues to evolve to serve the needs of Canadian farmers, we’re honoured to be a partner and supporter of the important work you are doing for agri-marketing in Canada,” says Bob Willcox, President, Glacier FarmMedia.

AGI signs on to CAMA’s National Sustaining program

Professional development and sharing industry knowledge top the list of AGI’s reasons for joining CAMA in 2019. It didn’t take long for AGI to recognize the value CAMA offers to members and the agri-marketing industry, so, when CAMA announced the new National Sustaining Partner Program, AGI quickly signed on.

“This partnership is an opportunity for AGI to be part of the conversation about what modern ag marketing looks like,” says Michael Morreale, AGI’s Marketing Manager. “By participating and contributing to CAMA’s industry events we are able to demonstrate our leadership while learning from our peers.”

A Canadian-founded company, AGI holds CAMA memberships in Manitoba and Ontario chapters. “We believe culture is everything. With collaboration and curiosity as two of our core corporate values, we are always challenging ourselves to find new ways to support our employees and the sector as a whole,” says Morreale. And a partnership with CAMA aligns nicely with AGI’s values. As CAMA members, AGI demonstrates their corporate goals through their participation at professional development events, recently presenting a CAMA webinar about the customer experience journey through Covid-19 where the company shared how the pandemic had changed the way they conducted business.

Morreale notes networking opportunities with fellow Canadian agri-marketers, access to educational sessions and peer-education social events with industry representatives as some of the greatest benefits of a CAMA membership.

“We are a dynamic ag-focused company with deep roots in the Prairies, and we look forward to sharing and learning from each other through CAMA,” says Morreale.

RealAgriculture joins CAMA National Sustaining Partner lineup

Over the years, the RealAg team have immersed themselves in every CAMA opportunity, realizing the value and benefits of membership in such an industry-focused community of agri-marketers. So, when CAMA put out the call to join the new National Sustaining Partner program, it was an easy decision for RealAgriculture to sign on.

The Rise of Programmatic Advertising for Agriculture Brands

In agriculture media, programmatic advertising has been emerging at a rapid rate. The digital journey of a farmer is not limited to only agriculture media. Farmers browse the web in the same way as the average consumer, visiting multiple websites a day and consuming content across a variety of categories. 

A farmer is leaving a trail of behaviour and preferences that programmatic companies can then store, enhancing its learning on that customer. Next, they place that customer into a pool where they can be targeted, not only on their interests, but also on the crops they are invested in.

Exploring Beyond The Fence Post

The business of agriculture is much, much bigger than its stereotypes and is rapidly expanding beyond those expected fence posts. Some of the greatest advances in technology are happening in the agricultural business, and agri-marketing is at the forefront of telling this story. On Tuesday, February 9, a panel of marketing experts shared their stories and insights about the importance and evolution of Agri-Marketing. 

Why Virtual Tradeshows May Be the Most Lucrative Investment in Agrimarketing

 

For decades, tradeshows have been a go-to staple for agrimarketers around the world. Even in recent years, where the costs of participating in and standing out at tradeshows have made it increasingly difficult to generate positive ROI, agrimarketers have still treated these events as annual “must-haves”. That said, given the restrictions COVID has placed on attending in-person events, agrimarketers have started to question the value of virtual tradeshow alternatives. Many have decided to abandon these shows altogether in favor of immediate cost savings resulting in the cancellation of a large number of these annual events, mainly due to an overall lack of exhibitors willing to participate.

Lillie Ann Morris Joins the CAMA Cambassador Program

Welcome to our newest Cambassador!

It’s tough to find someone in the Canadian agriculture marketing biz who doesn’t know Lillie Ann Morris. Born in the USA, Kentucky farm girl Lillie Ann has had a long-standing impact on agriculture north of the border, holding advertising sales positions with Public Press (owned by United Grain Growers at the time to rep Country Guide and Canadian Cattlemen), Top Crop Manager, and Farm Business Communications (where she is currently an ad sales consultant for Country Guide, Farmtario and Le Bulletin des agriculteurs). Lillie Ann proudly calls Ontario home and is well known for her relentless drive to build relationships with key players across the entire Canadian agricultural scene, especially organizations that favour care of the soil.