Part 1 of 2
In today's fast-paced business world, effective marketing strategies are essential for success. When it comes to the logistics industry, marketing plays a crucial role in driving growth and building strong relationships with clients. From B2B digital marketing to building brand reputation, effective marketing strategies can transform your logistics operations and help you grow.
Marketing is not just about selling products or services; it involves understanding customer needs, building relationships, and delivering value throughout the supply chain. In an evolving industry such as shipping logistics, it’s important to stay in touch with your audience and potential consumers of your product by maximizing exposure to your brand.
Gaining More Brand Exposure
Brand exposure and recognition is a primary and critical function of marketing. Without it, the goal of capturing even an incremental increase in business is challenging. In an evolving industry where the players are continuously consolidating, changing, shifting gears and adding functionality to gain a more substantial percentage of the market, those companies that put a strong marketing strategy in place will prove victorious.
While marketing comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, a comprehensive approach that includes targeted digital marketing campaigns, focused social media strategies, and concentrated content creation will prove the most valuable. Companies that embrace a well-rounded approach to marketing will be able to deliver a message to their target audience that hits home, resonates with their pain points and equates to more opportunities for success.
Marketing changes as quickly as the supply chain does so it’s important to constantly evaluate, evolve and check in on the competition. Jennifer Karpus-Romain, Executive Director of the Transportation Marketing & Sales Association (TMSA), reminds marketers in logistics to regularly revisit your brand and differentiator to ensure you’re being consistent.
“If we're talking about how sales have been slow, when was the last time you checked in your value prop,” she asks. “There's work to be done there just to make sure that you're being consistent with who your brand is.”
Lead generation continues to be the primary purpose for employing marketing strategies, however, proper marketing can also help build strong relationships between businesses and their customers. A well-rounded marketing campaign also includes sharing user feedback, employing use-case scenarios to demonstrate real-life situations that embrace your offering and communicating your companies’ commitment to providing exceptional customer service.
In a playing field where all things are considered equal, the quality of your service and support could be the deciding factor in whether you win or lose a new business opportunity. It’s important to level-set the stage with your commitment to clients and establish a foundation for loyalty and trust with would-be customers.
Brand exposure, a comprehensive approach to marketing, value statements and positioning all make up a successful marketing strategy. Effective positioning is the key to successfully differentiating your company from competitors in the logistics sector. A well-crafted brand identity conveys professionalism, reliability, and innovation -- all essential qualities for success in a competitive market. Marketing allows you to define your unique value propositions clearly and position yourself as a trusted partner within the supply chain ecosystem.
Aligning Marketing & Human Resources
Many logistics companies face challenges aligning siloed departments into one cohesive machine. Human Resources and Marketing are two such departments that have traditionally operated independently but share a similar path.
Both manage the company’s brand – Marketing manages it externally with clients and prospects and HR manages it internally through employees and investors.
According to Karpus-Romain, by creating better synergies between the two departments, companies can create a more consistent brand experience for all audiences.
“One of the most interesting trends that I'm seeing is actually the alignment between marketing and HR, because of recruiting,” she said. “I think that alignment between those departments will continue to grow because recruitment is critical, whether you're recruiting drivers or employees. It’s not easy.”
Karpus-Romain also reminds logistics marketers to remain aligned with their internal sales teams.
“Something that I recommend to all sales and marketing people is collaboration between those departments,” she said. “You should be helping each other not hating each other. And whether it is the marketing person that goes back or the salesperson or whatever, when you close a client, ask them how they found you.”
The Buyer’s Journey
Another significant aspect of marketing in logistics is optimizing visibility across various touchpoints throughout the buyer's journey. From search engine optimization (SEO) strategies to paid advertising campaigns on relevant platforms like Google or LinkedIn -- these efforts ensure that potential customers can easily find your business when they are actively searching for solutions related to transportation or warehouse management.
“The number one rule is knowing your audience … who are you trying to appeal to,” said Karpus-Romain. “I think that's going to be the key for sales and for marketing. I think as we go into this questionable market, just think through that.”
An effective marketing strategy provides for continuous improvement. Analyzing data-driven insights and leveraging analytics tools such as Google Analytics or CRM system metrics capabilities provides a path for marketers to identify areas for improvement to maximize efficiency within logistical operations.
By incorporating a strategic marketing approach to your overall logistic strategy, you will enhance customer satisfaction and drive growth opportunities that will keep you ahead of competitors.
Better with Banyan
Banyan Technology, the leading provider of freight execution software for real-time rating and execution of all over-the-road (OTR) shipments, has an aggressive growth strategy that includes several new product launches over the next 12-15 months. To successfully launch these new features in our patented LIVE Connect® software requires an aggressive marketing strategy to share the news with Clients, Partners and the industry. This includes email campaigns, digital and SEO strategies, podcasts and blogs like this one to help provide value and information to the industry as we all navigate the shifting landscape.
Look for Part 2 of Banyan’s blog on Marketing in the logistics space.
To hear more about Karpus-Romain’s take on Marketing in logistics, visit https://www.banyantechnology.com/resource/finding-a-community-in-logistics-with-tmsa-episode-13 to view Episode 13 of Banyan Technology’s Tire Tracks podcast.