High Five: Pip at @whats_for_smoko

The GRM team is always keeping our eye out for people and businesses in the rural sector who are using social media well. This month we wanted to celebrate Philippa from @whats_for_Smoko for her captivating and authentic Instagram account.

If you don’t follow her, we encourage you to head over there as soon as you are finished reading this post. We are pleased to share that she is just as lovely as she seems in her online presence. 

Here are five rapid fire questions for our new friend and favourite Station Cook.

Pip! It’s so good to talk to you. The food and farming mad GRM team love your page and what you are doing on Instagram. Can you kick us off by telling us a little bit about you and your story?

“Awww thank you! I love doing it. It’s a bit of fun. 

I grew up in a rural area but don’t consider myself a hands on “rural girl”. That being said, I always had friends in the rural sector. When I met Joe he was a pilot and we then lived in Melbourne and Christchurch. I was a teacher for 12 years. When the opportunity came up for him to go back to his family farm we took it so the kids could grow up in this lifestyle.

I am now proudly the cook for the station. I say proudly because I really believe this is a special role. I get to contribute to our people and their wellbeing on the farm. Not only do I feed them but we have some many good conversations over a cuppa. This is good - especially for the young guys who are new to the role and the farm. “

That is such a great story! What inspired you you start your instagram page?

“As a woman who found myself in this new role and lifestyle, I had to intentionally see the value in what I was doing day-to-day. 

I feel other women in my role devalue their purpose on the farm and what they contribute to the operation as a whole. With this in mind, I wanted to show that our job - and it is a job - is not only valuable but to also provide practical smoko ideas and conversation.

I want my page to inspire other women. “

How do you decide what to post and when?

“Ha! I honestly don’t plan that far ahead. There are a couple Instagram “rules” I try to follow but even those are loose. For example, I never post more than once a day - often it’s only twice a week - and I try to post in my stories every day to stay relevant in people’s feeds. Also, I always link people in if I share their content and respond to people’s request for recipes.

To give myself some structure, I purposefully use my grid to share smoko ideas and some historical value but I use my stories to educate and share my opinions.

Oh! Do you want to know one of my most interesting secrets? I read that if you post and then immediately go comment on other pages, you are more likely to increase your amount of engagement. I swear it works and more people see my content because of it!”

You’re right! Our InstaBird would totally agree with that little algorithm secret. What else would you recommend for people who would like to do a better job “telling their story” but are not sure where to start?

“Don’t over think it. I have a background in teaching — I have no education or background in farming or social media. I just share what I see. You don’t have to become a “personality” or “influencer”. Just share little snippets of your life with your existing community.

If you have a photo and don’t know what to post, chuck in a little history or story about your day. Keep it easy and say what you see. Share the positive side of farming.

Don’t worry about the haters - there are fewer of them out there than what you think. The key is adding a personal touch.

Also, people LOVE seeing people. I always get more likes if there are people in the image.”

What is your favourite recipe as of late?

“I do have a wee favorite recipe from over shearing. I asked my community for a “no fail sponge” and I loved the story that came with this particular one.

This post is special because of the community interaction. I loved the sharing of everyone’s sponge recipes, tips and tricks. I think it sums up how great this wee community is for supporting sharing with each other.”

Pip, your work is inspiring - both in and out of the kitchen. Thank you for sharing with us, even through you just completed 25 days of shearing on farm! That certainly deserves a high-five….and a glass of wine. Cheers to you and the work you do!
If any of our readers would like a little bit of encouragement in their own content check out our sweet offers for the month: 

  1. Free Downloadable “Quality Content”
  2. A bespoke content calendar just for you! $47
  3. If you are the DIY type but feeling stuck try this blog post - 10 Questions to Ask When You Don’t Know What To Write

Trista Burn is an American-born-Kiwi-by-marriage communications specialist. She studied Communications and Business at Whitworth University and is currently learning the fine art of toddler negotiations.

A dairy farmer’s daughter and a legacy deeply rooted in ag, Trista firmly believes in the value of agvocating for the primary industries and sharing their stories with consumers. In other words - the heartbeat of GRM. 

You can easily win her heart with a killer Apple Pie, Hazelnut Latte or an invitation too Mexican Food. mmmcmm tacos.