By: Morgan Rezac
Farm Credit Services of America is an agriculture financial institution that gives loans, financing and insurance to farmers and ranchers across the Midwest. Its brand motto is Agriculture Works Here and it aims to serve the rural community.
The brand needed to find a universal way to draw a positive attention and publicity toward the business in each small town. To serve each of the rural communities that this institution has offices in, the company decided to create grants specifically aimed toward hunger and nutrition, young and beginning producers, rural emergencies and agriculture education.
Farm Credit services of America needed to aim this earned media toward rural communities because that is where its customers live. Farmers and ranchers are more likely to do business with other institutions that support the rural economy, schools and community. Current customers and prospective customers are the desired audience because this program is not advertised, only spread by word of mouth through employees and customers.
As the grants were awarded in the local communities, each recipient wanted a press release to put in their local newspaper. In small towns, every person reads the local newspaper, which generated positive publicity for Farm Credit Services of America through earned media. The marketing department provided press release templates to reporters to make it convenient for the reporter.
Tags: earned media, grants, rural communities, target audience