Husker Harvest 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!
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.
Another successful Ram summer ride and drive series has sadly come to an end. The 2015 rodeo and farm show tours saw the best weather and more importantly, the best crowds that we have experienced to date.
This year, both tours saw the addition of the 2015 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel, which was a great addition to the drive fleet! Guests were amazed by the torque, lack of typical diesel noise, and the amazing fuel economy (up to 29 mpg).
As the Ram Trucks brand continues to build momentum and win market share, we continue to see (and welcome) increased interest and participation in the ride and drive events.
Hats off to Ram on another great season!
Cheyenne Frontier Days – Cheyenne, WY
Colorado State Fair – Pueblo, CO
Oklahoma State Fair – Oklahoma City, OK
Heart O’ Texas Fair – Waco TX
Farm Show Tour:
Wisconsin Farm Tech Days – Madison, WI
Farm Progress – Decatur, IL
Husker Harvest Days – Grand Island, NE
Sunbelt Expo – Moultrie, GA
Wisconsin Farm Tech Days
Steven’s Point, WI
August 12-14, 2014
August 26-28, 2014
September 9-11, 2014
In the outdoor event world, when dealing with Mother Nature, you win some and you lose some. With 3 major farm shows on the schedule this summer, Gordinier Group pro drivers had to battle with some serious rain and storms to bring Ram trucks to the masses.
The farm show circuit began with Wisconsin Farm Tech Days, which featured excellent weather and mobs of Ram test riders. The simulated off-road properties and 2014 Ram 1500 and 2500 trucks were a huge hit with consumers who lined up to participate in our experience. Our job of showing off the features of these amazing trucks gets easier each year as they continue to get better and better – no convincing needed, thank you.
From Wisconsin, we moved on to Boone, Iowa, for Farm Progress Days. This is where the rain began. We arrived on the first show day to 6 inches of standing water on our track. Luckily, we brought some trucks to the entrance, put on our Product Specialist hats, and were still able to have a good number of positive guest interactions, despite being unable to drive. The rain continued throughout the show, causing an eventual morning cancellation on the last day.
When we finally dried off, the Gordinier Group crew made their way to Kearney, Nebraska for Husker Harvest. Once again we battled torrential downpours and weren’t able to drive. Back to our vehicle walk-arounds and Product Specialist duties. Not a bad gig, but our team are drivers and really like to be behind the wheel where we can demonstrate the features that we are explaining.
The weather didn’t cooperate this year, but our guys and gals are scrappy and still managed to get in front of a lot of Ram and potential Ram owners.
The farm shows provide an audience that is the perfect demographic for the brand and even with the wet weather, still an excellent series.
September 11-13, 2012
Every September since 1978 the World’s Largest Totally Irrigated Working Farm Show™ spans 1000 acres of former U.S. Army land just west of Grand Island, Nebraska. Husker Harvest Days showcases the latest technologies covering farm equipment, agriculture products and advanced cropping methods. With nearly 600 vendors, it could take several days for event guests to see all of the impressive, state-of-the art demonstrations.
This was the second year that the Gordinier Group took to the corn fields with the Ram Truck Ride and Drive Experience, presenting the Ram Brand’s cutting-edge capabilities. Attendees were able to test drive the 2012 Ram vehicle line-up (including the 1500 Outdoorsman “Mossy Oak Edition” and the 2500 Power Wagon) over a demanding off-road driving course. Gordinier Group product specialists demonstrated the trucks’ superior handling over strenuous articulation, suspension, body strength and stability obstacles. Check out some photos below of the Gordinier Group crew connecting both huskers and farmers from all over the nation with the truck that’s going to get their job done.