Choosing the Right Events Is the Key To Accelerating Sales

Commodity Classic

Choosing the Right Events Is the Key To Accelerating Sales

Next week we’ll be at the 2022 Commodity Classic in New Orleans meeting with clients and prospects.  

It’s America’s largest, farmer-focused show offering a full slate of educational sessions, new product and technology launches, and excellent opportunities to network and meet farm industry leaders.

Commodity Classic is the annual conference and tradeshow presented by the National Corn Growers Association, the American Soybean Association, the National Association of Wheat Growers, the National Sorghum Producers Association, and The Association of Equipment Manufacturers.

Each day, I get to talk with many ag business leaders. When I ask people if they’ll be at Commodity Classic, I usually get two responses.

        1. Yes, I wouldn’t miss it or,
        2. No, it’s too expensive, we’re not ready for that.

National shows do cost more — higher show costs, increased travel expense, and you’ll need to spend a little more on your booth set up to make an impact. However, consider the following trade-offs:

  • Connecting with the industry change leaders
  • Influencing the influencers
  • Spending more time with media
  • Showcasing your products to early adopters

If you have a limited marketing budget (and everyone does), then you need to ensure that your investment nets you the greatest return in the shortest time frame.

In my 20+ years of attending agriculture events, I’ve noticed that neighbors watch their peers.   

Those who are first to try new technology, new methods, and products are at top-tier national events like Commodity Classic. They are not at the small local or regional shows.  Why spend the same amount of money and more time going to lots of small shows chasing sales that will not be impactful to your business.

Research on attendees at Commodity Classic says they influence 6+ farmers in their area about new agricultural products.  My own experience backs, this up. Each year when I attend Commodity Classic as a manufacturer, I could trace at least one new dealer carrying and promoting our products to one conversation I had with a farmer at that show.  This one new dealer resulted in a 10x return on the show cost. That was not the case at the small shows.

The growers that attend Commodity Classic are the local leaders. They sit on their county and state boards of the host association. They are the county representatives for their fair boards, government and their average income is higher than average. Their neighbors watch, listen and follow what they do.

If you are a new company or if your marketing budget is small, you might ask yourself the following questions about how to identify top tier events that will produce a return on investment for your business:

  • Who attends the show?
  • How big are their operations?
  • Why should attendees buy my product?
  • What are my two top business objectives for attending the show?
  • How will I generate and convert business leads from the show?
  • How many/which trade associations and journalists participate in the show?

Every industry has an event like this (IBS, & Cultivate are two in other industries we serve). If you are a new company, you might be better off finding a top-tier show. If you can connect with the people that will champion your cause to their followers, it will accelerate your sales and lead to greater ROI>


Not sure if you are ready for a top-tier show? Let’s talk.

Will you be at Commodity Classic? If so let’s connect while we are there.

Is there a can’t miss show for your business? We’d love to hear about it.

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