Agriculture

A Perfect Storm for Used Parts?

A "perfect storm" may be brewing in farming communities that could have a direct impact on the used agricultural parts industry. In a report published by the Perfect Storm Road USDA this month we learn that, once again, farmland values in the "Farm Belt" have slipped. Lenders have seen another 2% drop in the value of an acre of farm ground. The reason is low commodity prices which, in Iowa alone, will cost farmers $2 billion in income this crop year. The other issue is the rise in oil prices. In just the past week we've seen a barrel of crude go from near $40 to knocking on the door of $50. We are all aware that agriculture uses an abundance of petroleum products from fertilizer to fuel.

All of this, if we pay attention, may signal an opportunity for the used, rebuilt, re-manufactured parts business.

When farmers see the economic reality of lower prices and higher inputs they begin to re-think their spending patterns. If, for example, they can save several thousand dollars on repairs this fall it's money in their pocket.

This has a direct impact on members of NTPDA if we start telling our story. Farmers have long been independent do-it-yourself experts. And when they realize the economics of doing business with you...you are more likely to increase your business.

But, they have to know about you and how you can help so here are three things you might consider over the next several weeks.

  • Share the Story - If you are using social media you should start telling your story about being an independent business who can assist the agricultural community through this economic downturn;
  • Your Website - If you have, and you should have, a call to action on your website you should use that space to highlight the savings and benefits of doing business with you and how you can provide high quality service at lower prices. If you have a business blog (and you should) consider pointing that call to action to the story about how you can help;
  • Media Connections - We all have local newspapers or radio stations. You should consider writing a quick piece about the economics of the farm economy and then pitch that to the media outlets. They are always looking for solid stories that impact their listeners or readers.

You have an excellent story to tell and people are seeking answers.  Go get 'em!


Not So Rosy Down on the Farm

The numbers are staggering.  According to the USDA Farm sector profitability is forecast to decline for the Harvest Imagethird straight year. U.S. net cash farm income is forecast at $90.9 billion, down about 2.5 percent from the 2015 forecast levels. Net farm income is forecast to be $54.8 billion in 2016, down 3 percent. If realized, 2016 net farm income would be the lowest since 2002 (in both real and nominal terms) and a drop of 56 percent from its recent high of $123.3 billion in 2013.

So what?

Farmers all across the United States will be seeking ways in which to hold down their costs just to break even with last year. There isn't much they can do when it comes to seed and inputs but there is plenty they can do when it comes to fixing and repairing their equipment.

This is a golden opportunity to increase your sales and your standing in the agricultural community.  How? It may take some work but here are a couple of suggestions:

  • Let Farmers Know - Don't expect that all farmers know about you and your business. Take some time, and some cash, and let farmers know that you exist. That can come in the form of paid advertising or in social media; 
  • Focus on Cost Benefit - If you offer free shipping, quick delivery or any number of added value options make sure your customers are aware;
  • Create a Call to Action - Not every visitor coming to your website knows exactly what to do. Make it easy for the visitor to go to the right place. Tell the visitor if you have live chat or a message service where you can answer their questions quickly and accurately. Consumers often need to be told "what to do".

The downturn in farm income is real and when you reach out to your customers and let them know you understand and you are willing to help...you'll boost your brand and your sales.

 


Tick, Tick - Don't Blow $75

 

Click Mr. Money to get to the Early Bird Registration Page!
Hey, It's TIME!
In a couple of days you'll lose your chance to save $75. So? So, what can you buy with $75?  We crunched some numbers and found that seventy-five bucks buys:
See that seventy-five bucks is worth it but you've got to register for the Annual Meeting and Trade Show before November 30th!
How do you do that?  Easy!  Here is your LINK to the Early Bird Registration.  Join your friends (we'll share those  names soon) who have already registered AND saved $75!
One Other Thing!
Along with saving money on registration this conference and trade show is proving to be one of the best business events you could attend. There's a focus on business growth, sales...and fun. What could be better?
Here's that Link to Early Bird Registration and if you've got a few bucks left over from the $75 you saved...buy us a beer?
See you in Kansas City!

It's Time to Save Money!

The month is going by quickly and that means the opportunity for NTPDA Members to save some money is Man Throwing Moneyalso fading.  The Kansas City Annual Meeting and Trade Show promises to be one of the best values we've ever provided. Each day of the event is full of useful information and step-by-step ways to help you increase your business revenue.

From networking tools to a full fledged seminar on increasing business income the trip to Kansas City is going to be exciting.

Something that you may not realize...your association has been working for months on the programming. We've not hired expensive talent that will charm you with stories but we have reached out to professionals who have been working on the program for months.

And you get it with your registration.  Oh...and save some money if you register before November 30th. So, don't wait...put some money in your pocket by registering early and then build your business to higher levels with the information and take-a-way products you'll receive in Kansas City.

Oh...did we mention...fun?

Here, once again, is the link for Early Bird Registration.  Go on...click through.

Thanks for reading and we look forward to seeing you in Kansas City!


Welcome eShipperUSA to NTPDA!

The Board of Directors of the National Tractor Parts Dealer Association (NTPDA) has EShipperUSA Logoapproved the Associate Member Status Application for eShipperUSA!  We thought you might like to meet Sal and hear a bit more about the company.

Estalished in 2005, eShipperUSA has strong relationships with major airlines, couriers and trucking companies and they have been named as NTPDA’s preferred small package carrier. 

Sal will be reaching out to you to introduce himself and his service offering - he is  a direct provider of all major small package services and has some great options for your domestic and international freight activities!

Sal has agreed to provide a courtesy freight analysis to all NTPDA members and he will also be attending the January convention in Kansas City so you may want to visit with him about your transportation program.

Welcome Sal and eShipperUSA!


Your Business and the Farm Economy

The USDA now says farm income for this year will fall to $58.3 billion; that is a 36%  Farm Income 2015
drop and the lowest farm income level in nine years.  It also means that, if these numbers hold true, this could be big news for your business.

The impact on your business?

Already John Deere has laid off over 1,500 workers because farmers are going to be putting off new purchases and that means they will repair with they already own.  This is a huge opportunity for your business and it’s one of the topics we’ll cover at in Kansas City during Boot Camp 2016. 

Part of Boot Camp 2016 is a new program called the NTPDA University a day long sales and marketing program designed to help you boost your revenue base by as NTPDA_Logo_Camomuch as 30%.  This isn’t guess work. This comes from years of helping business people, just like you, grow revenue numbers by making some simple adjustments to how you are currently doing business. 

Our members have told us you want real value from your membership dollars.  How’s this? If you had to pay to attend this sales and marketing seminar in a group setting the cost would be $495 per person.  We’re giving it to you with your Annual Trade Show and Meeting Registration.  

So, in Kansas City you’ll not only learn how to better network, meet new people with new products and services but you’ll also walk out of that meeting armed with the tools to grow your business.

Value?  Yep, we think so.  See you in Kansas City! 

 


You! Yes, We're Talking to You!

If you've been keeping up with our efforts you know the NTPDA is about to launch Man Finger YOUwhat may be the most valuable event in our association history. In order to add real value to your membership we've made plans to bring you, the NTPDA University during our Annual Meeting and Trade Show in Kansas City.

So what is it?

The program is a sales and marketing seminar that will last for several sessions with international presenters who will help you build a tool to boost your bottom line by as much as 50%.  No gimmicks, no fast talk, no sales pitch, nothing to buy...just a proven method that will help your business sell more, be more and reach more customers than ever.

Why are we doing this at our Kansas City Boot Camp?  Because our members NTPDA_Logo_Camo expect real value for their membership dollars and, if you were to go out and sign up for this session it would cost each of you $495 tuition.  However because you are a member of NTPDA we're not charging an admission it comes with your registration to Boot Camp 2016!

Over the next several weeks we'll be reaching out to regular members, associate members, past members and those businesses that may have been missing out on this great value added association. 

Get ready...it will be here before you know it!


Wow! That Was Nice!

FireworksThe long holiday weekend is over and all of us at NTPDA hope that you and your friends and family had an exceptional time honoring our great nation.  Now, it's back at it. (OK, we know...agriculture never really takes a holiday but, hope your customers took some time off.)

We would really be interested in how you spent your time away from the office. If you care to, hit us up on Facebook we'd love to see.

We're in the middle of planning for the upcoming Summer Board Meeting which will take place in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.  If you've got some questions, comments or want to learn more about what the National Tractor Parts Dealer Association has coming up...feel free to shout (well not SHOUT) at us.  We're always listening!

We get it, you've got work to do and we're with you on that.  Once again, thanks for reading and for your membership in the NTPDA!


How Can We Help?

Man ExclaimYou've no doubt heard it said, "People do business with people they know and trust!" and it's true. That's one of the reasons the National Tractor Parts Dealer Association exists.  We're here to help create a relationship between people; with the goal being business growth.

That effort, now decades old, has provided positive business to business relationships all across the globe. Folks in countries, states and provinces now, because of NTPDA, are friends, business partners and sometimes competitors.

When we link our common goal of increasing business to each other we all are better off. So, this year, let's make it a point to respond to membership in the NTPDA not as an expense but as an investment in doing business...better.

Soon we'll be gathering for the Summer Board Meeting, this year in Sioux Falls, South Dakota to plan for the coming months and our Annual Training and Trade Show in 2016.  Between now and then let us help you in making connections, learning more about the industry and building relationships with each other.

Sound like a plan?

If you have not yet joined us on Facebook do so today?  And you can also follow us on Twitter @NTPDA.  Easy huh? 


Three Planting Tips for Spring 2015

Missy Bauer Michigan AgWebFrom the test plots in Cold Water, Michigan, Missy Bauer offers three tips for starting your seed off right.

(This is from a Pam Fretwell interview with Missy which recently appeared in the Farm Journal Ag-Web Online.)

In south central Michigan, Missy says, cold weather was the biggest factor in deciding when to put the seed in the ground. Michigan experienced the coldest February on record, this issue is compounded by a large percentage of ice coverage over the Great Lakes, which makes for a delayed, cooler spring.

Missy offers three pieces of advice to farmers waiting to get into the fields.

Wait for average soil temps to reach 50 degrees.

Missy says, “We really try to hold guys back, if they can, and wait for those soil temperatures reach 50 degrees.” She notes, some guys put the seed in the ground as soon as the temps hit 50 degrees only to have the temps drop back down to the 40s and even upper-30s for a few days. That’s a little scary, she admits.

If you can avoid cold and wet, do it!

The cold doesn’t bother Missy as much as cold and wet conditions. Cold and wet, she says, is a bad recipe and can negatively affect germination.  

Test seed quality.

Missy encourages farmers to send their seed in for quality testing, especially if you plan to put your seed in early while temperatures could still drop below that 50 degree mark. Specifically, she notes, you want to check for good saturated cold scores and cold germination scores.