Getting your Customers Started with Digital Farming

As with any business, savvy agribusiness must understand your customer’s needs to help them today and see ahead for tomorrow.

Your producers are often tasked with monitoring and tracking every aspect of their operation to stay productive and profitable. As agriculture becomes a more competitive industry, increasing efficiencies and remaining ahead of competitors is a priority. So it is little wonder why digital farming has grown in popularity, quickly becoming a necessity for agribusinesses and farmers the world over. 

Digital transformation strategies are becoming commonplace in nearly every industry, and farming is no exception. As one of the world’s oldest industries, farming is no stranger to advancing technology.

Today, many successful agribusinesses are taking advantage of the ever-advancing technology available to them by using platforms like DTN ClearAg to optimize their decision-making, grow their revenue, and manage risk.

The following looks at how technologies enable ag businesses worldwide to help their producers improve the way they grow, harvest, and sell their produce.


The challenges of digital farming

There are many reasons why a producer may be hesitant to either implement or expand its digital farming infrastructure. First, as with most things, there is a tension between the potential returns and the associated costs.

Additionally, many farms have been operating for generations. Therefore, it can be easy to rely upon what you know and what works. 

One challenge with any new technology is ensuring that it integrates with the existing system in place. In the case of digital farming, any effective implementation must take into consideration how it will integrate with current practices.

In addition to this, each farm has its own unique requirements, and there is no silver bullet in terms of one technology that fits all farms.

Aerial view of drone spraying

Technologies that are helping today’s farmers be more efficient

A growing number of today’s farmers are using a variety of digital solutions, such as drones, sensors, software, and weather monitoring systems to improve crop yield and farm production. These technologies are helping modern farmers engage in precision farming, focusing on profitability, efficiency, and sustainability on the farm. 

However, the most fundamental piece of technology that a farmer needs to rely upon is the system that helps them understand and predict the weather. The local weather conditions can impact each step by deciding when and where to plant crops, irrigate, fertilize, and harvest.

Corn devastated by drought

Weather monitoring and prediction

Perhaps one of the most influential (and uncontrollable) factors affecting crop yield is the weather. Extreme weather events, such as hurricanes or droughts, can have an astronomical impact on farmers, as has become increasingly evident in recent years. 

Because of this, agribusinesses need to provide their customers with access to the most accurate weather forecasting, and field data is precious to farmers. When farmers rely on actionable weather insights, they can make confident, definitive decisions and form field management strategies to optimize yields. 

Advanced weather monitoring and prediction systems exist to improve decisions involving labor, equipment, chemicals, irrigation, sustainability, and more. These decisions assist in managing risks.


The complete picture

The reality is that not all weather forecasts will provide your producers with the full scope of the information that they need. Therefore, the digital farming solutions that you provide need to be scrutinized.

While producers often use weather stations to assess their land, these stations have their limitations. Weather stations provide helpful information, but it is limited to the small radius around them.

Imagine if a producer relied solely upon the weather data of a weather station; however, there was a small pocket of blight present just outside of that station’s radius. The results would be detrimental.

In the same way, a producer must monitor their entire growing region to make sure that they are not missing any information that will affect their crops. Fortunately, historical data modeling and predictive software are filling in these information gaps.

Additionally, a weather station is a piece of hardware, making it a piece of equipment that can need repair or replacement. Weather stations are subject to the same equipment malfunctions that plague all equipment. 

That begs the question, “What information do your customers have if my weather station goes offline?” Using historical growth data for modeling and predictive software can be an answer. It is economically proactive and ensures crops are adequately managed at all times.

Therefore, vast, reliable information is needed for a producer to make confident decisions that reflect the complete picture of the land he is working within.


More than data

As noted above, producers must keep an eye on many moving pieces to have a successful growing season. You know that your customers are looking for technology that will simplify their processes and decision-making.

Pouring through pages of reports is not simplifying your customer’s day-to-day operations. In fact, it is making it more complicated and overwhelming. Adding the challenges of changing weather and the need to act quickly makes this more critical than ever before.

Any technology introduced on a farm must have a clear purpose and optimize your producer’s operations. Technology must provide more than just information; it must then guide operational decisions and transform data into decisions.

Farmer with tablet

Show the benefits of digital farming for your customers today

When you use DTN ClearAg, your customers will have access to a wealth of information and data, including:

  • Weather data analytics
  • Soil conditions
  • Crop growth
  • Spray conditions
  • Field accessibility
  • Water & irrigation management
  • Harvest optimization modeling
  • Agronomic indices

Not only that, the data that ClearAg provides is more than just a sea of numbers. Give your customers actionable insights that they can implement immediately. Provide a solution that results in more efficient and economic choices. Minimize overspray and improve the results of product applications. 

Our data modeling tools and predictive software can fit seamlessly into your existing products and provide value to your farmers.

Request a free demo of DTN ClearAg to see how you can use our customized technology and data to grow your business and help meet the demands of your producers.