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Agrimarketing : March 2009
UPDATES/continued frompage 28 Nothing exemplifies the com- plexities of rural lifestylemedia as trying to define the target audience themselves. The universe estimates are on the lowend of fivemillion and on the high end to asmuch as 27 million.And on top of that just about every company has their own “title” for the target. Sowhat to do?Attack as always! Attack it on three fronts—and all at once if possible. “The niche attack” is the lowhang- ing fruit of the rural lifestylemarket— and the least expensive. Everybody prettymuch knows you have your lifestylemaga- zines, specific rural lifestyle Web sites (nor- mally tied to the magazines), “niche TV” shows on niche “TVnetworks,” and nowsome “niche radio” shows aswell. Iwould also put Search Engine Haller Optimization (SEO) in this “niche” category aswell since you are keying it on “niche”word phrases specific to your product. All of these “niches” are great targets and almost “must” buys, but they are limited in total reach of the target audience(s). If you bought every rural lifestylemagazine out there youwould be lucky to reach one third of the target—but it is an easy one third that youwillwant to take advantage of. Rememberwe are dealing in a target of upwards of 10 million plus and buying a bookwith a 200,000 or less circulation is only going so far—but it’s a great start. “Niche”Websites, Radio and TV might ad another half amillion or so to the total reach number but still leaving youwith over 50%to 60%of the target not hit in any fashion. Nowthat being said, here’s where the realwork begins and to a degree, themoney. The “Demo/Geo” attack iswhere this lifestylemarket really starts to get traction for amedia planner.Demo/ Geo iswhere you identify themedia demo that contains the greatest num- ber of actual product users ormost likely purchaser. That is combined with the “geo” portion in that you 30 AgriMarketing s March 2009 indentify the best individualmarkets for your product. It’s basically the good ole spotmarket approach—but withmuch fancier terms becausewe havemuch fancier research today. This iswhere you’re BDI – CDI matrix comes into play in that you are protecting keymarkets and growing potentialmarkets. This nowin the idealworld becomes an individual media planning exercise bymarket. Themediamix formarketAmight need to be different than themedia mix formarket B and so on due to media costs and the target audience’s media usage habits bymarket. Ideally you hit the top 10%to 33%ormore of sales or sales poten- tialwith this overlay—nowwe are cooking butwe are not done yet! Stage 3 if you have the resources comes over the topwith “consumer product usage” targetedmassmedia coverage. Over the top is less “niche” butmoremainstreamcable TV,newspaper groups, network “format” radio, broader basedWeb efforts including Viral, etc., that you have actual product usage numbers bymedia. Let’s say thatwe know that 12%of chainsawownerswatch this cable network, or 20%ofATV owners listen to this radio format etc. You find the largest coverage for the least cost, but keep inmindwe are going big here. It’s not thewaste you focus on, but the price of themedia relative to the coverage of the target— or “Cost Per Point” (cost per percent- age point of the target reached) based on actual product usage. BROADHEAD + CO. Minneapolis,MN by Craig Roads, Creative Director The Rural LifestyleMarket is feeling the pinch the rest of the economy is. As branding professionals, is this the time to hunker down and bide time until the clouds have parted? Or do you spendmore on lavish, high quality inserts or spreads to increase brand awareness during tough eco- nomic times? As a veteran sailing enthusiast,my answer can be summed up in the words of an old English proverb, “A smooth sea nevermade a skillful mariner.” Unfortunately, the impact of previous recessions in ruralAmer- ica do not necessarily provide lessons on how to weather the cur- rent crisis.Much has changed, not just in the economy, but also in the rapid development of newmarket- ing tools since the advent of the Internet. I’ve always believed that those companies that focus on the future in a down marketwill emerge stronger. The branding rules still apply, but long term profitabilitymust be the focus instead of immediate gains inmarket share. Businesses need to be responsive Roads to the plight of the consumer in a recession. Abranding campaign that stresses style over value in this eco- nomic climate is a branding cam- paign that is out of touch. Some analysts are predicting it may take 18 to 24 months before the economy begins to recover. This yearmay be the time to develop and build relationships. Patience is key. Sealing the dealmay have to wait until mid 2010. In a down market, hug your friends and con- tinue to earn loyalty. Pay particular attention to customer service. In a booming economy, itmay be amar- ginal issue. In times like these, it carries tremendous relevance. Be flexible andwilling to think outside the box. In thewords ofMil- ton Berle, “If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” CHARLESTON/ORWIG byMikeOpperman Public Relations Director Reaching the rural lifestyle audience is significantly different fromengag- ing almost any other audience in agriculture. After all,we knowthe dairy herds that havemore than 3,000 cows, theMontana cow-calf opera- tions and the strawberry growers in Florida. It’smuchmore difficult to use conventional communications methods to impact the computer programmerwho has 25 acres, a dozen beef cows, 24 chickens and a grove of Christmas trees.