Customers are important for any 3PL company. But like any business operating in a B2B space, there are certain challenges involved in finding the right customer.
While it is important to understand the typical customer profile for your 3PL services, we think it’s equally vital to know where to look for them.
Here’s a list of these places along with some recommendations.
7 Best Practices to Find 3PL Customers
1. Professional in-person Events and Tradeshows
Industry conferences attended by 3PL companies are great avenues to find contacts directly. These events often feature a speaker session and a sponsored exhibition. Scoring yourself a speaking engagement at an industry event, chances are that you will be approached by prospective customers after your presentation.
Speaking opportunities at conferences and tradeshows position you as an authority in the industry, which generates its pull, while exhibitions also allow your company to showcase your brands and services and network with industry peers.
Online events like webinars allow you to present a focused talk to an audience. Unlike most in-person events, webinars give you a degree of control over your content via a presentation with rich online multimedia features. This is especially true if your 3PL company is hosting the webinar.
People who sign up for a webinar have shown at least some interest in the topic you are presenting, and so they may as well be leads for your business. Webinars often net you digital leads in the form of emails. That leads you to the next couple of avenues where you can find customers for your business.
Free webinars get you more audiences, while paid registrations may require you to offer some premium giveaways. The former option is preferable to the latter, though.
3. Email Marketing Channels
Email marketing is a great way to get customers. You can opt to get bulk cold leads from professional marketing services or capture emails through your site (more on this below). A key benefit of deploying email marketing is a two-way conversation with your prospective customer, thus, allowing you to share clear and useful information about your 3PL services.
We recommend that you start with a brief, attractive message while also having a plan for consistently following up on lapsed contacts and responses.
4. White Papers
White papers require some effort to write but are rewarding in a couple of ways. First, they allow you to get good solid email leads. Secondly, white papers give you a reason to monetize your digital lead-generation channel. You can then tie them with premium webinars.
5. Newsletters and Blogs
Online newsletters and blogs allow you to build an email-safe list. You can use your safe list to advertise your 3PL services. Newsletters are also a good way to send updates to registered users. Newsletters can encourage existing customers to try new services or prompt potential users to join your customer list.
What’s more to say here? This is the number one social media space for professionals, employers, and job seekers to network with other individuals. You should create a great company profile, use it to contribute useful content, and participate in discussions with other professionals in and outside of your industry.
You can approach prospects directly or be approached by customers yourself. LinkedIn also has an advertising option, which is great if you have the budget for that.
Like white papers, video content requires some effort, but consistent and engaging content can direct traffic to your website. For a 3PL company, this space is best for educational or benefits-focused content. Youtube is also useful if you want to target small business companies that are looking for a simple local 3PL solution for their business.
8. Classifieds and Trade Magazines
This avenue is important in situations where you are looking for public sector or government tenders. Many jurisdictions require the publication of tenders or RFQs in local newspapers or trade magazines to meet transparency and open competition conditions. If you are looking for these types of customers, you may not even have many options.
We hope that this guide gives you an idea about the different ways you can find customers for your 3PL company. If you are looking for a professional third-party logistics provider, you can always count on us to deliver you the best service at the most affordable price.
Contact us today and get a free quotation!