Tips for Marketing Your Farm to Potential Landlords

Prairie Gleanings

Gaining more acreage is a challenge for young farmers. Experts have tips for marketing your farm. Check out the February Prairie Farmer for more info.

Published on: January 17, 2012
Most folks define marketing as how well you sell your crop. In the February Prairie Farmer, we’re looking at a different type of marketing. How well do you market your farm to potential landlords?

This series of stories started with some fairly simple farm resume questions. Pretty soon, I was collecting advice for young farmers on how to gain acreage. It’s a huge topic with a lot of “fine lines.”

For example, experts agree it’s o.k. to send out introductory letters with a copy of your resume to potential landlords. However, it’s not o.k. to send out a letter that says I’ll beat your best cash rent offer by 10%.

When keeping your ear to the ground on potential acreage, one expert suggested cultivating sources at the local machinery dealer. Every farmer reaches a point where they’re not sure if they want to make an investment in another line of machinery. The dealer will likely see signs of balking before anyone else. This is a great chance for a young person to propose some sort of partnership. Of course, this only works if the near-retirement farmer doesn’t have a farming heir.

Another expert recommends tossing a family photo in with each resume. It’s well worth your time to get the spouse and kids together for a good old fashioned tractor photo. Once a farm manager or potential landlord sees that family pic, it becomes tough to just toss the resume in the trash. At the very least, they’ll know what you look like.

The last big piece of advice for young farmers – have patience. It’s tough to do, but once you establish an honest reputation the landlords will find you. Volunteering in your local community is a good way to showcase your values in a forum off the farm. It’s also a good way to network.