While the trucking industry may be the backbone of the U.S. economy (according to the ATA, nearly 71% of all freight tonnage in the U.S. moves on the back of trucks), that doesn’t mean recruiting qualified drivers is an easy task. It’s complex, and at times, downright challenging.
Aside from the high turnover rate within the industry, there's the lack of actual applicants; there's no denying that there's a driver shortage, which makes it challenging to meet your hiring goals.
Secondly, there’s evidence that a large percentage of career drivers are preparing to retire within the next few years; that shrinks your candidate pool considerably.
Add in the fact that many of the most qualified drivers can be particular when it comes to their employment requests, and it can seem as if recruiting qualified drivers is next to impossible.
What can you do to be proactive when it comes to recruiting the right drivers?
The answer isn’t a top-secret, never-heard-of-before strategy. If you want your fleet to not just succeed, but to thrive in today’s competitive world, you need to learn how to harness the innate power of marketing properly.
Marketing: The Numbers Speak for Themselves
Leveraging the power of the various social platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram isn’t just a mere suggestion when it comes to making those recruiting numbers go up. No – these days, it’s a necessity.
Need some proof? Let’s take a look at some of the more commonly known social streams to give you some perspective.
According to a 2020 report by Hootsuite, Facebook has 2.5 billion monthly users. Ads can reach 1.95 billion of those users. To put that into context for you, that’s 32% of everyone in the world over the age of 13.
Now let’s look at Instagram. The same piece states that 92% of all Instagram users say they have followed a brand, clicked on a website, or made a purchase after seeing a product/service on Instagram.
Over on LinkedIn, the report indicates there are 675 million monthly users, gaining two new members every second. On Twitter, there are 152 million monetizable daily users. Still unconvinced? Give yourself a few minutes to view the full report.
Making Social Connections
As the industry grapples with the driver shortage – among the various other hurdles previously mentioned – fleets need to take proactive steps to make their marks in our digitized world. If you’re not on social media, think about all the prospective drivers you’re not reaching and the competitive edge you’re forfeiting to other companies.
Here’s the thing: marketing is easier now than it’s been ever before. There are endless (cost-effective!) tools at your disposal that you can leverage to build brand awareness, actively engage with recruits, and get drivers onboarded quickly and effectively.
Ready to win at online recruiting with an unbeatable digital strategy? Here are some marketing ideas to get your wheels turning:
- Demonstrate the benefits of working with your company. What are the advantages of joining your team? Now’s your chance to brag a little, and showcase what makes your fleet the fleet to drive for. Competitive salary? Home time? What safety measures have been implemented for driver health and well-being? What about benefits, pet policies and freight lanes? Social media gives you endless opportunities to showcase your company; experiment with video, infographics and more to get a sense of what resonates with your digital audience.
- Engage your drivers online. The numbers show that people are online – and those people include your drivers.
- When potential recruits see hard and fast proof that your fleet cares about its drivers and their overall wellbeing and happiness, you'll see the number of applicants increase. Our tip? Be professional, but don't be afraid to have some fun with it and showcase your fleet's unique personality.
- Offer useful tips. It’s essential to provide plenty of content that’s of value. Think health and safety posts, or advice on maintaining good mental health. Just choose content that’s a.) timely and b.) relevant to your chosen audience.
- Remember: consistency is vital. If you want to be seen as a reputable agency, it’s important to be consistent with your online marketing efforts. There’s no “one and done” strategy here.
In fact, according to this report, you should post to Facebook once a day, Twitter 15 times per day, and LinkedIn once per day. On Instagram, meanwhile, you should be posting one to two times a day.
It doesn’t need to be complicated; there are plenty of resources and agencies out there ready to help you maximize your digital marketing strategy. Just do your research beforehand, develop an approach and then execute your plan.
Need some help to get going? We found this fantastic resource to help you get started with your social media marketing strategy. It covers all the basics, including how to develop your messaging, how to select your channels and how to create a content plan.
CTA Option 1: As a recruiter, what social media marketing strategies do you find work best? On the other hand, what hasn't worked?