Wisconsin Farm Tech Days
October 16-18, 2018
Sunbelt Ag Expo was the final stop on a successful summer farm show season for Ram Truck and Gordinier Group.
Ag shows are a great way for Ram to take a more grassroots approach to experiential marketing. In contrast to Ram’s auto show ride and drive activations, the guest interactions are longer and more personal at farm shows. While Gordinier Group drivers can’t churn through the staggering numbers of people like at an auto show, it is nice to shift gears and have an opportunity to form more of a bond with the heavy truck-biased demographic and be able to spend more time addressing their questions and concerns. It really feels like the trade-off is worth it.
This year’s tour began in California, hitting 5 total stops before finishing up in Moultrie, GA at Sunbelt. The 2018 2018 tour featured stops at:
World Ag Expo – Tulare, CA
Wisconsin Farm Tech Days – Johnson Creek, WI
Farm Progress Show – Boone, IA
Husker Harvest Days – Grand Island, NE
Sunbelt Ag Expo, Moultrie, GA
The Ram program consists of in interior off-road track surrounded by a perimeter towing track. This allows the team to give guests two different experiences – a ride along over the technical off-road features, piloted by Gordinier Group drivers. Similar to the auto show model, drivers give product specs and explain what the truck is showing on each obstacle.
On the tow track, guests drive and tow the load while GG personnel ride shotgun, answering questions and giving pointers while the guests actually feel the truck’s power and towing capability first hand.
With this model, the consumer experience is genuine and very informative. We are looking forward to getting back to the fields in 2019!
July 9-13, 2018
Guests of the 2018 Wisconsin Farm Tech Days were some of the first to get a chance to drive Ram’s all-new 2019MY 1500 trucks. With an interior that most (if not all) luxury brands will be jealous of, the new Ram was a huge hit. All show vehicles were equipped with premium trim levels (Laramie Longhorn, Limited, Limited Tungsten).
The whole lineup, including HD 2500 and 3500, were available at this show. Guests were given a choice of riding on an extreme off-road course (piloted by Gordinier Group pro drivers) or driving a truck and trailer rig around a perimeter towing track. Attendees are encouraged to participate in both experiences and many do.
Both the off-road and towing courses enjoyed great foot traffic and we ere visited by many farmers who were very enthusiastic about the new product as well as the new refresh on the horizon for the Ram HD trucks. Even a few die-hard Chevy and Ford owners were taking a hard look at the new half-ton offering. You know that if those folks are giving it a second look, Ram is really on to something with this truck!
It was another great start to the farm show season and always fun to show off new product. On to the next one…
This year’s tour recorded stops at:
- World Agriculture Expo, Tulare CA (February 13-17)
- Wisconsin Farm Technology Days – Kewaunee, WI (July 11-13)
- Farm Progress Show – Decatur, IL (August 29-31)
- Husker Harvest Days – Grand Island, NE (September 12-14)
- SunBelt Ag Expo – Moultrie, GA (October 17-19)
Of all 5 farm shows in 2017, there was only 1 day that we were unable to drive due to inclement weather – this must be a record!
With friendly weather and the best light and heavy-duty truck lineup in the market, the Ram ride+drive tracks were busier than ever this year. As the focus has been shifting more towards the towing/hauling capability of these trucks, our courses have changed to accommodate more demand there. We still offer an off-road ride course at all shows, but have also added an experiential towing portion to the drive, where guests can get behind the wheel of a 1500, 2500 or 3500 and actually pull a trailer to feel the power, torque and load -handling. Of course, the crowd favorite is the 3500 6.7L Cummins High Output w/max tow that is pulling 30,000 lbs worth of a Case backhoe on a Big Tex gooseneck trailer. How’s that for real-life experience?
In 2016, Ram did just that. By bringing the Ram Truck Territory Ride & Drive to the 5 biggest agriculture shows (and letting them drive and ride in the trucks), Ram delivered many important impressions on buyers. This year’s ag show list included:
- World Agriculture Expo – Tulare, CA: 2/8 – 2/12/16
- Wisconsin Farm Technology Days – Zenda, WI: 7/18 – 7/22/16
- Farm Progress Show – Boone, IA: 8/28 – 9/2/16
- Husker Harvest Days – Grand Island, NE: 9/12 – 9/16/16
- Sunbelt Ag Expo – Moultrie, GA: 10/17- 10/21/16
Luckily, the ag events weren’t plagued with rain this year as they were in 2015. In fact, of all of the event days in this year’s tour, only part of one day was lost to foul weather conditions.
The new format for these events has Gordinier Group drivers piloting the trucks on the interior, off-road track. GG drivers tackle the precision driving on the off-road obstacles while delivering information – specs, features, and why buys – to the passenger guests.
Meanwhile, 3 tow vehicles circle the perimeter of the space, giving guests the opportunity to get behind the wheel of a tow rig to experience Ram’s best in class towing prowess. Guests chose between a 3500 dually with a gooseneck trailer (loaded with Case farm equipment), a 2500 pulling a horse trailer full of hay, or a 1500 with trailer loaded with a side-by-side or personal watercraft. In this situation, GG drivers ride shotgun, giving towing tips and product details.
Together, these two tracks give guests a nice picture of what the trucks are capable of doing in practical situations.