A marketing plan for a logistics business generally begins by identifying your target market and business model. You review the price of your rates compared to your competitors and how much you can afford to invest in marketing materials. When done right, it can mean more success for a logistics service.
For any marketing plan to be effective you must identify a target audience. Start by looking at current customers and identify those providing the most business. Determining the most profitable clients provides an idea of who identifies best with your company and where you're already successful. Next, turn your attention to the competition and see if there’s an overlooked segment of the market. It could provide insights into where to make your next move. Using the data you’ve gathered, define the demographics of your target market, such as corporation size, industry, location and revenue. Identify the common characteristics of company decision-makers, including title, age, gender and background.
Marketing plans should define why corporations do business with you. Since logistics companies offer the same basic service of freight management, you must rely on the benefits of doing business with your company instead of the competition. These factors make you unique in the marketplace. For example, your company might be more reliable than others or beat your competitors in customer service, freight bill auditing capabilities or information technology. If you don’t know what you offer clients your firm can’t distinguish itself from the rest of the logistics world and your marketing plan may not provide the desired return.
The next piece of most marketing plans is price, which should be based on your target market and the benefits of your business model. With competitive pricing, your goal is to match the rates of your competitors. If you need to penetrate a market, price is often set lower than the competition with plans to raise rates as your customer base develops. If you offer a number of services, try setting incremental rates based on those services. You can also use promotional offers, such as a discount for signing a contract for a specified time or one for new customers.
Marketing should be treated like any other part of your business and you should allocate funds during the planning stage. Common allocation methods include a fixed sum per year, a percentage of revenue and a percentage of the overall budget.
The development of marketing collateral is the nitty-gritty of your marketing plan. First, take a look at what materials already exist and how well they worked in the past. Identify which materials must be updated as well as any gaps in your marketing efforts. A new website, brochures or mailers can make a difference. Set up accounts on popular social media platforms. Focus on how you plan to reach both existing and potential customers.