Classic example of the need to think ahead

Published on: 08:51AM Feb 17, 2012

A business colleague came back from Indianapolis last week and told me about some of the dizzying price tags he saw while strolling around Super Bowl Village.


A ticket to a luncheon with members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, he said, was going for $975. A ticket to the game five hours before kick-off was fetching $2,000. If you wanted a VIP pass to Volkswagen’s Rock & Roll Fan Tailgate Party, call your banker: $10,000. For a luxury suite in Lucas Oil Stadium, where the game was played, most Americans would have had to sell their homes to come up with the $240,000.


Despite these staggering numbers, you didn’t need to be wealthy to have fun last weekend. Fans had their first opportunity to attend Media Day, a great chance to see and hear players and coaches from the Giants and Patriots talk about the game. Tickets for this were just $25. Tickets for the Jimmy Fallon Show on Sunday night after the game: free. A seat for celebrity flag football: free.


No, you didn’t need to be wealthy. You simply needed to plan ahead. Those cheap and free tickets were scooped up almost immediately after becoming available.


I bring this up because once again life shows us another example of the difference planning can mean to the bottom line. Those who don’t think through the possibilities ahead of time can end up paying the price.


Just look at the potential for corn this year. With the stocks-to-use ratio being tight, a continuing debt crisis in Europe, rising tensions with Iran, and the ever-present weather wild card, corn in 2012 is shaping up as classic example of the need for pre-planning. We are seeing price projections from $3.50/bushel to over $10.00/bushel. This range easily translates into more than enough to purchase a Super Bowl luxury suite. Are you ready for whatever the market may do?


As always, I encourage to you to begin preparing for possible scenarios well ahead of time. Know what you will do no matter what the market does. Here’s an overview of the steps you can take to get it done:


·        - Analyze all the possible scenarios based on fundamental and technical analysis, along with "what-if" scenarios.

·        - Develop strategies for each possible price scenario. Set trigger points to signal when a particular scenario is unfolding.

·        - Execute the appropriate strategies, aware of the impact of your strategies on overall price.

·        - Repeat the process – strategic farm marketing is nothing if not dynamic.


Planning your marketing may not be nearly as fun as preparing for a weekend in Super Bowl Village. Still, in either case, if you have your moves mapped out ahead of time you’re apt to feel a lot better about your bottom line at the end of the day.


Scott Stewart is president and CEO of Stewart-Peterson, a commodity marketing consulting firm based in West Bend, Wis. You may reach Scott at 800-334-9779, email him at [email protected]


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