Questioning why an organization should be a part of Twitter? Today I sent out a tweet (a 140 character-length message) to my community of 1000+ on Twitter.  Their responses were inspiring, so I wanted share these examples with you to help more people in agriculture understand the business value of Twitter.  And, most importantly, encourage you to jump on board if you’re not already a part of the Twitterverse!

My question, as @mpaynknoper, was “Why do you think twitter is valuable to #ag? Send me your comments in next hour to share with webinar participants.” Following are the answers I received in less than 30 minutes – a time frame demonstrating the power of the tool’s immediate timeliness and sense of community.

  • RayLinDairy: Relationships-Putting a face on the farmer and making them human.
  • whitwallace: Great for dialogue between #ag& non-ag folks. If we don’t use Twitter to tell our story, it’s told for us, minus the #facts.
  • scrowell:  It’s like a cocktail party (via @johnrobinson http://bit.ly/SNXm2You can listen quietly, join in, flit between groups. (MPK note – loved this, as I use the cocktail party analogy frequently)
  • twittor_groups: RT@d_tolandTwitter allows ag to reach audiences away from the farm, unite ag-related groups & leverage playing field … (MPK note-this shows value of re-tweet or forwarding of a tweet; Twittor Groups doubled the number of potential viewers of the message when they re-tweeted Dan’s message.)
  • Chrischinn: Great way to spread info to other aggies in a quick manner, Great way to tell our story to non-ag audience.
  • JPlovesCOTTON: creates a community that can talk about real world farming, to respond to misinformation, provide more immediate communication.
  • akleinschmidt: 1) networking, 2) sharing ag-related info, 3) factual info, and 4) putting a face to ag.
  • Kath_Monsanto: Twitter has been a way to bring the ag industry together. We have connected in a way that wouldn’t have been possible otherwise. (MPK note – this is one of several tweeps from Monsanto, who serves as great ag business role model for others to learn from.)
  • lisammclean:  I use twitter to monitor public opinions that impact farmers. I learn what we need to do better, and opportunities for messaging.
  • natejtaylor: – timely decisions critical to ag – twitter helps with that & knowledge share.
  • AgriLawyer: Opens up a direct line to consumers generally that cannot make it to the farm gate. Also there is education between members of the Ag community
  • Fastline:  it is a tool with a variety of uses. Allows us to easily communicate with non #agfolks that may not hear our message usually.
  • leahbeyer: twitter helps make messages viral. not the solution, but rather a tactic for sharing messages.
  • cowjon Twitter is a quick easy way to connect with people and put a face to their food that they would otherwise likely get from groups like HSUS.
  • jilibI’ve personally researched ag topics that I would have never thought of giving any time-pre-twitter.

These people represent farmers, commodity groups, agribusinesses, lawyers and concerned citizens interested in food production.  Many have connected through #AgChat on Twitter. They tweet from tractors, milking parlors, offices, seed plots, universities, homes, their kids games and airplanes.  Hopefully they’ve helped you see Twitter offers REAL value for agriculture; long-term to protect our perception and short-term to engage your community.  Don’t drag your feet any longer, jump into Twitter today!

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