Hannah Vander Poel is a female dairy farmer using social media to advocate for the dairy industry. Under the Instagram name @IDdairygirl, she shares the joys and challenges of dairy farm life from Northern Sky Dairy in Castleford, Idaho. 

Vander Poel can be found elbow-deep in daily work on the 1,000-cow dairy, a sister-site to her home farm where her parents reside, Sky View Dairy, in Bakersfield, California. In between breeding cows and herd data entry, she balances taking classes toward her accounting degree as a satellite student at Boise State University. 

Vander Poel was a featured speaker on the Innovation Stage at the 2020 Dairy Strong Conference held in January in Madison, Wisconsin. There, she shared her social media experience and inspired other dairy farmers to do the same. 

Progressive Dairy Editor Peggy Coffeen sat down with Vander Poel to hear more about the hows and whys behind her social media advocacy.



Here is a breakdown of the episode:


Hannah, tell us about who you are and where you are from. [2:25]

You define yourself as a “female farmer and social media advocate.” Tell us about your activity on social media. [2:55]

Where do people find you on social media? [3:10]

What prompted you to become so active on social media? [3:25]

Was there something that prompted you to take your social media to the next level? [4:15]

When you spread your messages and images, what do you hope people take away from viewing them? [4:40]

Tell us about some of the most successful posts you have made. [5:15]

How did you change your content when you decided you wanted to be more active in engaging consumers? [5:50]

Do you have goals for where social media will take you? [6:35]

What do you think is the key to getting more followers on your account? [6:50]

What are characteristics of a successful social media post? [7:30]

Do you have a schedule and plan for the posts you make, or do you do it on the fly? [8:10]

What’s been you experience with animal activists? [8:45]

Give a specific example of a time when you have felt under attack. [9:35]

What are tips you have for other dairy farmers on getting started on social media? [10:45]

What are your tips for making a really successful post? [11:45]

Tell us about the difference between making a post and using stories. [12:25]

What can we expect from your upcoming blog? [13:00]

What is your path for college and beyond? [13:45]

What are your responsibilities on the dairy? [14:25]

What do you hope your social media activity does for you and the dairy industry? [14:45]


Follow Hannah Vander Poel on Instagram @IDdairygirl, and watch for the launch of her upcoming blog: Idahodairygirl.com


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