It wasn’t all that long ago that third party logistics firms were kept in the shadows, barely recognized outside of the supply chain.
Even retailers often didn’t think to call a 3PL if they needed help with their warehousing and distribution, they simply built larger and more costly warehouses they only needed part of the time. But today, there’s a lot more awareness of the industry, in part due to social media.
But social media has affected 3PLs in many other ways, as well.
Social Media and Third Party Logistics
Social media isn’t just for looking at pictures of cats. As it turns out, you can also discover new industries and businesses within their networks. Everyone is on social media these days, even 3PLs. There’s not a corner of the business world that social media hasn’t reached by now.
Luckily, social media has had many effects on 3PLs, including:
Giving small businesses a chance to learn more about their 3PL of choice all in one place. Between customer reviews, customer-generated content and the posts that the 3PL they’re checking out have made, there’s a lot a small business owner can learn about a chosen 3PL from their social media account. It can help to narrow the field when they’re stuck between two 3PLs or even when they’re narrowing their initial list.
Creating more opportunities for 3PLs to reach more businesses. As a 3PL, it can be difficult to know which companies really want your services and which are doggedly holding fast to their increasingly antiquated fulfillment services tactics. Using targeted advertisements, as well as online networking, 3PLs have more opportunities to reach out to the customers who really want them, reducing ad spend and turning “no” into “yes.”
Providing a platform for 3PLs to demonstrate their credibility. So, maybe your big fish isn’t ready to sign just yet, but they’re not ready to say no, either. This means you still have a chance and social media is a great place to spread your wings. Social media has allowed 3PLs to show off their expertise by publishing smart content that demonstrates just how much knowledge they truly possess in a way that a warehouse tour never could.
Social media has changed the way the world approaches the 3PL industry, just like it’s changed pretty much everything else in the lives of the billions of people who log in monthly. For 3PLs, social media is an opportunity to come out of the shadows for once and directly introduce themselves to small businesses and startups that may not realize there’s an entire industry devoted to helping them succeed. For those small business owners, it might be the chance meeting of a lifetime.