Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association
Organic Farmer Toolkit: Articulating the Organic Message



Articulating the Organic Message – This section of the toolkit will help business owners most effectively communicate the values behind organic production to their customers.

Jump to:
MOFGA Organic Media Kit
Other Digital Marketing Resources
Market Research Based Messaging Tips
FAQs About Organic
Doing Your Own Marketing Research & Developing a Value Proposition


MOFGA Organic Media Kit

News & media outlets in Maine and beyond are increasingly interested in what local food producers and food systems entrepreneurs are doing and what they have to say! If you are contacted for an interview, or want to promote your business online or via social media – below are some resources to help you put your best foot forward!

5 Quick Media Tips for Organic Producers (PDF)

Organic Talking Points & Social Media Themes (PDF)

Graphics Ready for Social Media – (MOFGA graphics – designed for you to use on your social media, websites, email newsletters, and more!)

Photo Tips for Farm Photography

• 10 Tips for Shareable Farm Photography

• How Are Maine Farmers Finding Success on Instagram (PDF)

ME Farmer Recommendations for Photographers, Graphic Design, and Digital Marketing Professionals (2017 PDF)

Also, the Bangor Daily News did a great article on food labels in Maine in March 2017. Find that here.

Digital Marketing Resources

Digital Marketing is a gigantic topic encompassing social media, email marketing, online sales and getting a website to pay for itself, blogging and content generation, search engine optimization, and more.

When looking for guidance in this area, its best to have a specific query or area for assistance in mind. However, I have put together a set of resources below; some of which are very broad and other which provide more targeted resources.

• MOFGA's PDF Resource on Digital Marketing

ME Farmer Recommendations for Photographers, Graphic Design, and Digital Marketing Professionals (2017 PDF)

Other resources:

• 47 Tips & Tricks for CSA Farm Marketing

• NOFA NY's Social Media Strategy Videos

• Animal Agriculture Alliance's Guide to Social Media Success (PDF)

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Market Research Based Messaging

The philosophy and practices that make organic production so important are not always easy to explain to our customers and community. In 2016 MOFGA did substantial market research and developed some talking points and information for producers. You can find the results of that work, as well as our updated marketing materials (free to use) on our website mofga.org/buyorganic.

At that web page you can also find our wholesale marketing toolkits; ready to go kits of useful information that can assist in educating buyers at grocery stores, restaurants, distributors, and more. This kit includes information about the services MOFGA can provide such businesses. Scroll all the way to the bottom of mofga.org/buyorganic to find this resource.

Finally – MOFGA will attempt to periodically update our information for certified producers on new trends in the organic market. You can find that publication here:

2017 Organic Market Trends (coming soon)

FAQs About Organic

Sometimes it's easiest to correct common misconceptions or to answer common questions with a FAQ's page or handout. This might be something you often hear at the farmers' market, or something you hand to a restaurant account to help their employees understand more about organic production and certification. Maybe it's something you include on your website. Perhaps a quick review can assist you in answering your customer's questions directly.

Either way I have linked to two PDF's below; MOFGA's FAQ's document that we use and also a great resource from the Atlantic Canada Organic Regional Network (ACORN). Despite the fact that they are a Canadian organization, their document is very relevant.

MOFGA Organic FAQs

ACORN Organic FAQs

Market Research & Developing a Value Proposition

This section of the toolkit contains resources and tools producers can use to conduct market research and to develop messaging that is most relevant to their target customers. The Market Research PDF contains slides that were originally developed for the MOFGA Farm Beginnings course, but has been converted to a document with robust notes accompanying the slides. A producer should be able to use the PDF and the worksheets below (referenced in the PDF) to guide their market research efforts.

Market Research & Developing a Value Proposition PDF

• Customer Benefit Ladder Worksheet

• Charting Your Competitive Landscape Worksheet

• Consider Your Customer Worksheet

• Value Proposition Worksheet

• Evaluating Your Value Proposition Worksheet

Additionally, there is a similar PDF resource below that walks producers through the process of "market sizing," step by step. Market sizing is often a required component of business planning. It allows the business owner to estimate the size of their potential market in dollars and also represents potential sales for the business. It includes some local and organic specific sources for information that can guide this calculation.

Market Sizing: Step by Step PDF

• Market Sizing Example

• Market Sizing Template

• Example 2 Spreadsheet

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