March Workshops Offer Marketing Strategies for Ohio Food Businesses

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio farmers and food producers can learn about low- or no-cost ways to effectively promote their businesses by improving their online presence at a workshop offered at four locations in March.

The marketing workshop is being offered by specialists from the Direct Agricultural Marketing Program of Ohio State University Extension and the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s Ohio Proud program. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of The Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. The ODA’s marketing program identifies and promotes food and agricultural products made and grown in Ohio.  

The workshop is designed to offer food producers information on key marketing strategies to promote their businesses and products to consumers, said Christie Welch, director of OSU Extension’s ag marketing program. 

The goal, Welch said, is to help food producers increase the effectiveness of their online marketing and promotions.

“We’ll help direct marketing farmers take a look at their marketing efforts and offer tips and tools to help them improve their online presence,” Welch said. “There are millions of websites on the Internet, so how can you know if your business website is working best so that your customers can find you?

“The workshop can help farmers figure out who their target market is and how to best market to that consumer. We’ll also look at ways to effectively reach their customers to encourage them to try their products and encourage them to become repeat customers.”

The program will feature an overview of the Ohio Proud program presented by Lori Panda, senior program manager. It will also feature a presentation on the Maps & Apps mobile media marketing program, including a look at 2016 trends, tools and techniques on marketing via social media, Welch said.

“Participants will also learn how to evaluate their websites, examine how effectively they are using social media to promote their businesses, and learn how to develop a plan to make sure they are sending a consistent effective message to consumers,” she said.

The workshop will be offered in four locations statewide:

  • March 16 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Ohio Department of Agriculture, 8995 E. Main Street, in Reynoldsburg.
  • March 17 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at OSU Extension Clermont County, 1000 Locust Street in Owensville.
  • March 22 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Agricultural Incubator Foundation, 13737 Middleton Pike, in Bowling Green.
  • March 24 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at OSU Extension Summit County, 11100 Graham Road Circle, in Stow.

Registration is $15 by Feb. 29 and includes a box lunch and handouts. Payments can be mailed to: Ohio Proud, 8995 E. Main St., Reynoldsburg, Ohio 43068. Contact Welch at 740-289-2071 or or Panda at 614-466-8798 with questions. Credit card payments can be made by contacting Panda by email at

Tracy Turner
For more information, contact: 

Christie Welch