August 22, 2013
If your seed corn rep hasn't asked you for your next season order, odds are he will do it soon. He knows that if he doesn't get your name on the dotted line, someone else will be talking to you soon.
Once upon a time seed corn sales generally were heaviest in November and December, after harvest was over and people had a chance to digest yield results for the season. Those days are gone. The heaviest time now, according to seed sales reps, is now through September. Sales continue after that, but now is a prime time to line up customers and try to lock in sales.
Seed sales season underway: Becknology Days run through August 24. The regional seed company has built up a following based on a variety of practical farm test plots and early order incentives.
Different companies use different techniques to do so. Beck's Hybrids is currently holding their three-day big event at their headquarters at Atlanta, which draws 5,000 to 7,000 people. They have already held smaller events at three outlying sites in other states. People flock to the Atlanta field day to ride wagons and learn about what Beck's is trying in their Practical Farm Research plots. But they also will keep every salesman busy all day long booking orders for next year.
How do they do it? Early buy incentives are a big part of Beck's promotion package. Order early and you can earn discounts toward merchandise, or earn merchandise, depending upon how much seed you buy. They've even expanded their programs so you now can get discounts on leases of tractors and other equipment, with the discount paid by Beck's depending upon your size of seed order.
Other companies use different techniques. Seed Consultants, Inc., holds regional kick-off meetings with an evening dinner and an hour rundown of hot topics, plus what's new in their line-up. Other companies are also holding field days. Salesmen are visiting farmers. It's another reason to scout fields now – so you know what questions to ask about hybrids when a salesman asks you to buy for next year.
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