Are you struggling to think of ways to market or promote your trucking business? A powerful marketing tool, known as the Promotional Mix, is an effective way to communicate to your target audience using 6 different methods. Keep reading to learn more about each method and see specific trucking business examples!
What is the Promotional Mix?
The Promotional Mix contains 6 primary methods to communicate with your target audience. This includes Personal Selling, Direct Marketing, Public Relations, Advertising, Sales Promotion, and Social Media. You’ve likely heard about a few of these terms before and may even implement some of them in your current business. It’s important to note that not all methods need to be used, but it is crucial to have a mix of activity in several methods to ensure you are reaching your targeted audience.
Think of personal selling as door-to-door selling or setting up sales meetings to offer your services in person. While it is not the most efficient method, it could be helpful for small trucking businesses looking to work with their local communities. As a small trucking business owner, you may find success in creating promotional materials and information packets to drop off at local businesses that you would like to work with. You could also call businesses (with freight) to discuss opportunities with the shipping/logistics manager in person. This leads us to the next method, Direct Marketing.
If you’ve ever emailed, called, directly messaged, or mailed promotional material to a prospect, you have participated in Direct Marketing. Essentially, this method is when you reach out to your prospective customers directly. This is a very common method of promoting business in the trucking industry. You may find success with direct marketing for starting relationships with freight brokerages by calling or emailing them and sharing your business information.
Public Relations are activities that promote a positive image of your business and generate publicity that is NOT from paid advertising. As a trucking business, this could look something like sponsoring or creating a charity campaign or event. Consider finding ways to get involved in your local community to promote your brand in a meaningful way.
While it may seem obvious, we should clarify that advertising is the paid promotion of your business. This includes ads featured on TV, billboards, radio, and places on the internet like Facebook, Google Search, YouTube, etc. This method can be very expensive, but also rewarding depending on your goals.
As a trucking business owner, running advertisements on Facebook or Google that target specific regions or types of shippers may be effective for you. Or you could run a billboard ad near a large industrial park where you know there is freight. The opportunities are endless for paid advertising and should be carefully chosen based on your target audience, business goals, and budget.
Sales Promotions are essentially short-term marketing methods that capture customers like price discounts or extended credit terms. You may consider offering discounted pricing to new customers or a customer referral program. This method is not as common for a trucking business but could prove to be effective if done well.
Social Media/Internet Presence
Last but not least, is your social media and online presence. While this is the newest addition to the promotional mix, it could arguably be one of the most important. There is no doubt that having some sort of online presence is not only crucial to promoting your business but also for building business credibility. For example, imagine a freight broker attempting to search your company name or MC number and the results come up empty. It would be difficult to trust your business and give you a load. You have no online presence, and you may miss opportunities because of it.
Thankfully there is an easy fix to this that is completely free. Do yourself a favor and create social media accounts. It is a quick and free way to start establishing your online presence and present your business contact information. In a sense, it is free marketing and has the added benefit of establishing business legitimacy. Free platforms to consider include Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and LinkedIn. Be sure to post consistently.
Also, consider creating a Google Business Profile so you will begin to show up on Google search results. This will increase your chances of being found by prospective customers tremendously.
P.S. Being a great service provider is a great way to promote your business too. Sometimes, it can also be as simple as having a unique/high-quality service that provides value and is easy to naturally promote through word of mouth.
We encourage you to consider how these 6 methods can apply to your trucking business. Marketing and sales are what generate brand awareness and revenue for your business, so it is critical to prioritize and plan accordingly. Get going and get the word out!
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Soshaul Logistics LLC and its affiliates do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. It is meant to serve as a guide and information only and Soshaul Logistics, LLC does not assume responsibility for any omissions, errors, or ambiguity contained herein. Contents may not be relied upon as a substitute for the FMCSA's published regulations. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction or operation.