One thing I’ve learned, living in small-town, beautiful East Texas, is that we don’t have transactions — we have conversations.

Take the other day, for instance: My TV went black and I couldn’t get it to turn on correctly. Now, in researching how to fix it, there appeared to be a way to do so, but it was beyond my capabilities and, frankly, my interest. So, I listed it for free on Facebook marketplace. Within a couple of hours, I had someone willing to take it.

Now, in big-city Minnesota, the person responding to the listing would have appeared, I would have handed him the TV, and that would have been the end of the transaction. But in East Texas, we’re going to have a conversation. He was a very nice young man, just a little bored, and looking for something to tinker with. He thought it might be a certain problem that he could fix. After 10 minutes or so, he was on his way. He kept me informed of his progress and found that it was the problem he thought. But alas, he couldn’t fix it either.

This incident with the TV, however, got me thinking about some recent work I’ve been doing and reinforced for me the value of relationships over transactions.

Farmers want relationships.

To them, relationships are real important.

How do you start and build relationships?

Talk. Ask questions. Be genuine.

If you live in a big city, the world is transactional. You don’t see the same checker at the grocery store every week (if you see one at all); you don’t see your insurance agent at the Rotary meeting; you can go to church and not talk to a soul.

But where farmers live, the world revolves around relationships — relationships that are built and cultivated over time.

I talked with a farmer who gave a new brand of equipment a chance because of how good the salesperson was; he was helpful, not pushy. The person would come by to see how things were going. He helped fix a hydraulic hose that had just busted. He made the time to be interested in this farmer’s operation. This salesperson got the business.

It’s easy to get caught up in AI or the latest shiny object in marketing and sales. But being personal — having a relationship and being helpful — that’s what it’s all about.

If your technology makes it more difficult for the farmer, treats them like a number, or doesn’t give you the chance to make a warm and fuzzy impression, look harder for one that does.

Keep Reading about Building Relationships with Farmers

Why Farmers Take So Long

Farmers Have a PhD in BS Detection

Farmers Don’t Want Tricks

The 2024 Farmer Speaks Will Be Available Soon!

JL Farmakis Farmer Speaks research

To request a copy of the 2024 Farmer Speaks report research study, contact your
J.L. Farmakis, Inc. representative or request a copy from Bill Farmakis at

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