You have goals. Maybe they are strictly revenue-based goals. Maybe they focus on the overall growth of your freight brokerage. Either way, you need the right tactics in place to make sure you can hit your goals. While this will undoubtably involve effort from all departments in your company, today I'm going to share six ways your marketing department can help you hit your business goals.
Your marketing and sales goals will ultimately dictate the tactics you implement. For example, if your goal is to increase visits to the website (thereby increasing awareness and widening the lead generation pool), you would likely want to focus on creating optimized blog content and run paid media campaigns that drive back to the website. Here are some common marketing tactics and what they will result in:
Email marketing often includes audience-specific communications. This could come in the form of a regular newsletter. It could also include automated workflows. Keep in mind: plain text emails that come from a specific individual tend to perform best. Even when setting up an automated email workflow you should be able to send from an individual email, vs. a generic company email. Want to see more stats about email in 2021? This is a great article.
Social media is particularly powerful in connecting with a specific audience. Social media operates best in the logistics industry as a way to showcase thought leadership by sharing resources, and is especially effective when it comes to reaching your prospective employee audience. Keep the 80/20 rule in mind. 80% of content should be external facing and offer entertainment and value. 20% should be sale-centric. Want to go a layer deeper into social media marketing? This resource outlines best practices for different social platforms. Lastly, you should be encouraging your staff to be active on social media channels by sharing company content and updates. This can help you reach prospective customers and employees.
SEO-Based Content Marketing
Creating blog content is an effective way to rank organically for specific terms. For example, if you want to rank for “Wind Turbine Transportation”, you might write a blog: “10 Things to Know About Transporting Wind Turbines”. It’s important to understand the key words you’re going after before you begin to write. A good place to start is to ask your Sales and Operations teams what questions they get asked all the time, and create content to answer those common questions. Looking for some guidance on how to put together a content plan? You can download this template (or clone it to your Google drive) and fill out each section to give you a solid strategy.
Paid media can be accomplished through several different channels. The most common are: Social Media (these ads appear within a social feed), Search (these ads appear in text format at the top of a search result), and Display (these are banner ads that appear on relevant websites). A powerful paid media strategy is to set up retargeting ads. That means if a user has visited your site (or even a competitor’s site), they will be served up relevant ads for a period of time following their initial visit. It’s a great way to keep your company top of mind. It’s important to understand who your audience is so you can set up the appropriate targeting strategy and not waste ad dollars.
There is no denying that video is the preferred content format for the vast majority of people. Video allows a user to consume complex information quickly and efficiently. It also offers a better opportunity to connect emotionally with your audience. This could come in the form of short videos showcasing your services and differentiators. It could also come in the form of personalized 1-on-1 sales outreach videos. More on that here.
Create a Website That Generates Opportunities 24/7
There’s a misconception in the 3PL industry that opportunities can only be generated through sheer cold sales outreach efforts. The assumption is that the more sales team members you have making cold calls each day, the more sales opportunities you will generate.
While this is a common approach, it’s far from the only solution that exists. Creating an optimized website that’s designed to produce qualified leads is a tactic that some of the most successful freight brokerage companies have embraced. We’ve seen this approach succeed for our own logistics clients.
An optimized website includes things like:
Content written with the target audience in mind (prospective clients AND employees)
Content that incorporates keywords to optimize for SEO
Call-to-Action buttons used throughout the website
Downloadable, gated offers (must trade your contact information in exchange for a valuable resource)