How Markets Can Help Farmer Vendors: Advertising & Signage

By: Dan Blaustein Rejto       Posted On: August 12, 2015

To better understand the evolving needs of farmers markets and the farmers who sell at them, American Farmland Trust and the Farmers Market Coalition teamed up with C2It Marketing to complete a national survey of farmers who sell at farmers markets. This is part of a series of posts on the results of this survey. Read the other posts here.

Direct-marketing farmers were asked, “What could be done to help you and your farmers market be more successful?

Improving and funding advertising and signage of the market and its vendors

Over one in five farmers market farmers who responded to the survey said one of the most helpful things would be higher quality, better funded, and more targeted advertising for the markets where they sell.

Many described the importance of grants and other assistance to bolster advertising. For example, one respondent wrote, “Any financial assistance (grants, etc.) to assist farmers market with social media/email marketing are greatly helpful. We had the opportunity to utilize this service/tool last season and it significantly increased our sales and customer retention”

Others shared specific advertising strategies they think would be helpful:

  • “Kids activities”
  • “More advertisement on radio and social networks”
  • “More cybermarketing on the part of individual vendors”
  • “Newsletters showcasing “farmer (s) of the week.”
  • “How to cook presentations, recipe cards”

A number of farmers said that markets and vendors also need “better signs”, both at the market and along high-traffic areas such as roadways.

Farmers Market Vendors Say Better Signage in High-Traffic Areas Would Help. Photo: Melissa Olsthoorn


About the Survey:

The Direct Market Farmers: National Survey, conducted in March 2015, yielded an impressive response from over 1,500 farmers and ranchers across the United States, benchmarking this survey as one of the largest of its kind completed on record.

US-based farmers and ranchers invited to participate in the survey were selected based on their online presence (e.g. email, website, food/agriculture directory, etc.) and an indication of participation in the following activities:

  • Farmers markets and/or CSAs
  • Selling directly to consumers
  • Local, regional and/or federal agriculture programs
  • Educational studies