Looking for Clients as an Independent Truck Dispatcher: Online marketing
Today we're going to discuss a very important topic: finding clients as an independent truck dispatcher.
Finding clients is the biggest pain point for most aspiring truck dispatchers, and that’s not surprising. Finding clients is actually a pain point for most businesses, because if you have clients, your business is likely to prosper, but if your business does not have clients, it’s more likely that you‘ll fail.
Some of you are learning dispatch in order to find loads for your own trucks, your family’s trucks or even your friends' trucks. Luckily for you, finding clients is not such a critical issue; but for the rest of us, it is.
So, where should you start? The search for clients begins with marketing. Marketing is the bloodline of your business — not your dispatching skills. You can be the best dispatcher in the world, but if you have no clients, you will earn no money and will go out of business.
In our LearnDispatch training course, we like to divide marketing into two categories—online marketing and direct marketing. We will discuss direct marketing in a separate post, which you can find here. However, let's concentrate on online marketing for now.
Online marketing is critical for truck dispatchers.
As we discussed in other posts, many independent truck dispatchers work remotely. Some do it from their home, some do it from their private office, and others even do it from other countries. So, chances are, as an independent truck dispatcher, you will never get to meet your clients in person. I can personally recall only two or three clients that ever came to my office. The rest of them — and that is probably over 100 — I have never met.
So, how did they decide to use our service? One way or the other, they ended up on our website. If you browse the Alfa X Logistics website, you will realize that everything your client needs to know about the company is there. There is:
• An entire page about us
• A quick video outlining the main advantages of using our services
• A page outlining the services we provide and the fees we charge
Everything you need to know is on the website. If we had no website, it would be much harder for our potential clients to form an opinion about the service we provide. And that brings me to point number one:
You must have an online presence in the form of a website.
Your website is like your face. The website is a message you’re trying to deliver to your clients. If your potential clients don’t like what they see on your website, they will just move on to the next one until they find the one they do like.
And speaking of the message, I can't stress enough how important the content of your website is. Through content, you are communicating with your potential clients. You are delivering your message and your sales pitch. Essentially, you are telling them why they should work with you.
Unfortunately, this is the moment where many fail by not being able to formulate what they have to offer to their clients.
As part of our training, we offer a package to develop a website for our students. And we always like to point out, a beautiful website with weak content will not convert visitors into clients.
So, it is essential that you not only have a professional-looking website but very strong content as well. It should deliver a sales pitch to your potential clients and make them want to work with you.
Now that we understand how important your online presence is, we also need to understand that without visitors, your website is nothing but a pretty webpage you can show off to your friends and family. Visitors are the fuel that feeds your website, and your website is an engine that transforms your visitors into potential clients.
Where do you find visitors that convert to clients?
There are many different ways you can drive traffic to your website. The number one option would be just doing online search advertisement such as Google ads. Then you could also do advertisements on social media such as Facebook or Instagram. In fact, there are many alternative websites sites like Craigslist, Indeed and professional forums that could produce results.
In our LearnDispatch course, we have a marketing module where we discuss the advantages and disadvantages of different advertising options. Unfortunately, it will take too much time to go through all of them in this post.
However, I do want to explain what makes online advertising so attractive. If you're running an ad on Google, and someone is searching for a truck dispatch service, it means that they need a truck dispatcher right now.
They're not searching for truck dispatch services just for fun. They do it because they need help, and they need it right now. That is your opportunity to entice them to visit your website and convert them into your client.
You may object that running Google ads will cost you money. Yes, it will. But do you realize what that client with just one truck is worth? If you read our post “What you can charge as an independent truck dispatcher,” then you might know that one client with just one truck can generate you $14,000 to $16,000 a year. Do you think it is worth spending some money to acquire such a client? I think so.
Some of you may still object and say, “Hey, I just don't have much money to spend at all, so this is not an option for me.” And to you, I would have to say, “Okay, you will have to use some alternative marketing options.”
And that will just make it harder to acquire clients — not impossible, but harder. For example, with direct marketing, which we're going to discuss in the next post, you will have more options of reaching your clients without spending too much money. However, in such a scenario, you will have to put in more effort to get a quality response from your potential clients.
I'm really sorry for making this post so long, but you must understand how important marketing is to the success of your business. Some of you may say, "Well, I'm not good at marketing." Then you need to hire someone or maybe partner up with someone good at it. Because without it, your business is going to fail.
As a LearnDispatch student, you can submit your marketing plan to our support team for review.
That means that a marketing specialist can take a look at what you're doing, look at your website, look at the ads you're running, and see what you might be doing wrong. They may even make suggestions to help your marketing become more effective.
Now, that doesn't mean that our support team will develop a marketing plan for you, but they certainly can improve yours. And such improvement can result in just one extra client, which, as we know, can be worth $14,000 to $16,000 a year.
So, to summarize, concentrating on your marketing is very important. If you don't know how to do it, I encourage you to learn. It's not really that hard, and there are tons of courses. You can find tons of free manuals and videos online too.
All you have to do is dedicate some time to learning how to effectively market your business. And if you do, the great thing about marketing is that it's not only applicable to a truck dispatching business. You can use this knowledge to build other businesses or to improve your position at work.
Knowing how to market things is a valuable tool. It’s critical for any business and will make you a more desirable candidate and a more successful business person.
© By Roman Shmundyak March 2022
Are you thinking about becoming an independent truck dispatcher? LearnDispatch offers online truck dispatcher training courses which are suitable for people not familiar with transportation industry. Learn more about our training by visiting Training Details page or choose your course by clicking here.