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Marketing Filter: Please help a wannabe be all that he can be!
October 23, 2007 7:32 PM   Subscribe

What's the best marketing strategy for an independent contractor looking to focus on distribution centers and third party logistics providers? Long-winded version inside...

I've spent the bulk of my career solving logistics and distribution problems inside big box distribution centers for some of the largest companies in the world. I've written databases, developed intranet reporting systems, changed operational arrangements and helped to increase efficiency in every single distribution account I've ever worked with. My most recent "title" was Project Manager.

I left the corporate world behind last year to work with a friend on a small trucking/logistics company he was starting up and learned a million and one things doing it. I've since left that startup and been freelancing doing some basic web development and IT support work for several friends with their own businesses, none of which are in the logistics/distribution field.

I've also been fortunate enough to get some seat time in the sales and marketing world, albeit not exactly my world. I've knocked on doors and made cold calls, but it seemed to be a captive audience for me then. Basically, walk in the front door with some cookies, slide past reception and make a brief introduction to the (mostly) ladies running the phones. This seems to be as far from that as I can imagine.

So, hive mind, how can I combine the previous experience (which I loved doing) with the new independent role and get to the people I need to get to in order to market my services? Specifically, using IT systems and services to increase the efficiency of automated distribution centers? Besides handing out business cards and putting up a site, of course...

Thanks in advance!
posted by cdmwebs to Work & Money (3 answers total)
 
I suggest dropping the question in the Marketing Profs forum. It's where marketing professionals congregate.
posted by JaySunSee at 3:30 AM on October 24, 2007


As a strategy person at a marketing agency, my suggestion would be to focus on networking and PR. For instance, participate with as many trade shows or industry focused meetings as you can. Meet people, get business cards and establish relationships. You can also use forums or social networking sites (like LinkedIn.com) to do similar things. Next, I would start focusing on PR. Work to establish yourself as an expert in your field. Write case studies and send them to trade magazines, write editorials and guest columns. You should also create a website for yourself (if you haven't already) detailing your experience, clients and featured case studies. Good luck!
posted by tundro at 6:41 AM on October 24, 2007


I'll try both. Thanks!
posted by cdmwebs at 1:40 PM on October 24, 2007


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