The Communications Squad is a value-added ISA program for farmer members looking to accurately share the story of modern agriculture. The squad meets four to five times per year to receive timely information on the biggest topics in agriculture from in-house and external industry experts.
Interested in participating in the Communications Squad? Fill out the application. You can also view the 2022 Communications Squad schedule.
The 2022 Communications Squad will allow for a strengths-based approach for farmers with interests outside of media interviews. Three specialized task forces will achieve various objectives related to verbal communication, writing and social media.
|Spokesperson Task Force
Participants will focus on strengthening verbal communication skills to better tell the story of modern agriculture by:
- Completing mock interview questions
- Creating strategies for spokesperson scenarios (audio, visual, stories)
- Learning to communicate the importance of soy-based products
- Establishing credibility with media
- Working effectively with media
The spokesperson task force will now incorporate consumer focused, soy-centric engagement
opportunities for squad members to be actively involved in ag education, including:
- Soy education visits (classrooms, programs, etc.)
- Hosting farm field trips
|Writing Task Force
Writing is an essential and impactful communication skill to master. Participants of the writing task force will learn how to effectively tell the stories of agriculture topics by:
- Identifying audience types
- Practicing different writing styles (letters to the editor, blogs, etc.)
- Incorporating ag-related keywords
- Understanding what’s “newsworthy”
- Mock pitching media stories
|Social Media Task Force
Social media has quickly become one of the fastest ways to reach an audience. Participants of this task force will become better online advocates for agriculture by:
- Practicing how to create ag-related content and responses online
- Identifying tone and writing styles across social media
- Learning the various social platforms (as needed)
Media and communications training combined with group exercises meant to foster collaboration and networking means you walk away with new skills and new contacts with fellow farmers. Expect to be called upon to be a voice and advocate for policy matters, consumer misconceptions and agriculture as a whole.
"It's great training for learning 'how' to tell the story of farming and to learn the skills to apply to those business, media or personal conversations.” — Tarin Tiefenthaler, 2021 ISA Communications Squad participant