Logistics Provider Delivers Targeted Responses Via Lead Management Solution

By John Gaffney, DemandGen Report

For Transplace good things come in threes. As one of the top ten third party supply chain companies it has taken logistics outsourcing to a new level of expertise. And as a BtoB marketer it is consolidating its efficiencies in the three key areas of demand generation: email, direct mail, and now events.

After deploying lead management tools from LeadLife Solutions in October 2008, Transplace has tightened up all aspects of its demand generation efforts. Utilizing LeadLife’s tools, the company’s telemarketing is fueled by targeted, content-led email and direct mail initiatives that build relationships with key decision makers at highly-scored prospects.

By the time a salesperson at Transplace calls a valuable prospect within the current system, the contact is waiting for the call. In fact, the first call contact success rate is up 85% since October. “In past years our phone based success rate in getting to the right person was about 12% to 15%,” says Bill Hale, VP Marketing and Business Development at Transplace. “Back then it was ‘who is this?’ Now it’s ‘hey, I was expecting your call.’”

Dallas-based Transplace is a privately held $2.4 billion company formed in 2000 through the merger of logistics business units of Covenant Transport, Inc., J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc., M.S. Carriers, Inc., Swift Transportation Co., U.S. Xpress Enterprises, Inc., and Werner Enterprises, Inc. It serves Fortune 500 companies in several verticals including retail, consumer packaged goods, automotive and chemical. Hale says the lead generation system was not spurred by a particular problem, but to address a void between what the company’s sales personnel were capable of doing and what they were actually doing in terms of communication with prospects.

“I’ve always been a big fan of technology,” he says. “If you can let technology do the heavy lifting, then do it. If automating lead management can do the cold calling and free people up from hundreds of non-productive calls everyday, I’m all for it.”

LeadLife not only refocused the sales team by defining the content sent and the right person to receive it, it also established a lead scoring system. Third-party logistics especially where a huge company is involved, is a tremendously complex process. Information is complex, and communication with the prospect can involve several management levels. Scoring a lead based on information access is a key. Hale says Transplace has worked with LeadLife to score leads based on website read rate, open rate for emails, and other thresholds of website access.

The LeadLife solution has also been well-timed. The company has set the SMB market for its 2009 growth and has cast a wide net of prospects for the system to handle. Hale says the long sales cycle normally associated with selling and then implementing supply chain solutions has been squeezed by the tough economy. SMBs want a smoother, more efficient supply chain and they want it now.

The most important timing factor is the annual Shipper’s Symposium the company is hosting in Dallas May 5-7. Hale says the company has seen attendance growth every year, and was concerned about the economy’s affect on this year’s event. However, he credits the LeadLife solution with improving the communication with attendees and attendee prospects.

“It’s out signature event,” he says. “All our major clients, suppliers and prospects are there. We devote a fair amount of our marketing budget to it. This year, we were concerned about it, but so far, so good.”

About the Author
DemandGen Report focuses exclusively on the strategies, tactics and measurements that are central to generating demand.

Tags: Marketing Automation, Lead Management, Lead Scoring, Demand Generation

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