• Marketing 101 for Tradeshows

    07/30/2012 — Scott Frederick

    The following blog post is being published compliments of Christine Christman. She has worked in the trade show industry since 1981.  As the first staff writer for Exhibitor Magazine she helped develop the research standards and editorial format that is still in use today.  Christine has published hundreds of articles and three books on trade show exhibits. Now What? eGuide for Trade Show Exhibitors is Christine's new online resource for anyone who markets products at trade shows.

    Many people exhibit at tradeshows who have little to no previous experience in marketing, and make it work.  They're known as unconscious competents.  Those people who have an intuitive sense about marketing and getting their products out to the public - mostly entrepreneurs.  They don't know exactly WHY it worked, but they were successful.

    Then there are the folks who get "invited" by a boss or new job description to take on the trade show function in an organization.  These might be people who are good at details, good at selling, or in some other area that managers see as a good fit for trade shows.  And they make it work, too.

    Unfortunately, what can be missing for these folks is some simple marketing background that could launch a trade show program into a strategic marketing tool rather than just a one-time event. 

    If you're interested in getting up to speed on some basic marketing concepts, take five minutes for each of the free videos here.  You'll learn about how the lifecycle stage of your product, as well as your intended positioning in the marketplace can influence key decisions about trade show participation.  These concepts are part of Module A Create a Plan and Select the Best Shows.

    A2 Chalk Talk Video on Product Lifecycle Stages and Trade Show Marketing







    A3 ChalkTalk Video Product/Price Position and Trade Show Marketing 






    Check out Christine's website (tradeshowexhibitor.net) for more awesome marketing and tradeshow tools. And when you're ready for tradeshow shipping, be sure to check in with PartnerShip for a free, no-obligation rate quote, affordable rates, and guaranteed delivery.

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  • A Free Freight Analysis

    07/25/2012 — Scott Frederick

    Sometimes you just don't know what you don't know. This is especially true when it comes to LTL freight rates. Because there are so many variables that go into your bottom-line LTL freight pricing - such as commodity classification, base rate schedules, discounts, accessorial fees, etc. - it's difficult to really understand if you're getting the best rate when you call your carrier or 3PL for that LTL freight quote. As shown in the example below, sometimes the "highest discount" doesn't always mean the "lowest price."

    LTL Freight Comparison

    For this reason, PartnerShip began offering a no-obligation FREE freight analysis service a few years ago to help small businesses sort through their current freight rates to ensure they aren't leaving money on the table. We run several of these analyses for customers every week, and requesting a freight analysis is as simple as:

    • Visit PartnerShip.com and complete or brief Freight Analysis Form.

    • In the About Your Shipments section of this form, let us know what you are shipping, how frequently you are shipping, and a general idea of where you are shipping to our from.

    • If possible, also provide us with examples in an email to select@PartnerShip.com. This could be a few recent freight invoices, or better yet, send us a simple Excel file with recent shipments, including the following four pieces of information: Origin ZIP, Destination ZIP, weight, and commodity type (or classification).

    Once we have your request, our LTL freight experts will analyze your shipments to determine your current freight rates. Then we will review the best rates we have in place with our best-in-class LTL transportation carriers to see if you can save additional money on part or all of your shipping. Again, our free freight analysis comes with no-obligation - if you already have the best market rates, we'll let you know so that you can continue to enjoy them.

    If you're wondering how your current LTL freight rates compare, before (or after) you ask for that next LTL freight quote from your existing carrier, consider having PartnerShip provide you with a free freight analysis to make sure you are getting the best deal possible.

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  • A PartnerShip Profile: ABF

    07/23/2012 — Matt Nagel

    ABF was recently added to the select group of core carriers serving PartnerShip customers. ABF concentrates on national and regional transportation of general commodities freight, involving primarily LTL shipments. Established in 1923 in Fort Smith, Arkansas, ABF has solidified its reputation as a benchmark for safety, security, and freight-handling standards.

    ABF Logo 
    Through the PartnerShip alliance with ABF, customers can access competitive LTL freight rates, create bills of lading, print labels, and track shipments on PartnerShip.com. In addition to competitive freight rates PartnerShip customers enjoy ABF U-Pack services which offer extremely competitive rates on the ReloCubes for moving purposes. Some other advantages PartnerShip customers have by using ABF for LTL freight services are:
    • ABF provides comprehensive shipping services to all 50 states, Canada, Mexico, Guam and Puerto Rico (see map below).
    • More than 99 percent of all shipments handled by ABF are moved without a loss or damage claim.
    • Additional ABF services available upon request through PartnerShip:
      • TimeKeeper®, a guaranteed expedited service for time-critical, time-definite shipments.
      • TurnKey®, a premium inside delivery and set-up service.
      • FreightValue®, a service for shipments requiring special equipment or handling.
    If you have any questions regarding ABF services, or special LTL freight shipping needs that ABF might be able to address, call your dedicated PartnerShip sales representative at 800-599-2902.

    If you are interested in receiving a ABF rate quote for an upcoming LTL shipment, log on to PartnerShip.com, or create a web account if you haven't already done so.
    ABF Map

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  • Be the Biggest Loser: In Health and In Shipping

    07/11/2012 — Scott Frederick

    Weight LossPartnerShip recently ended an internal employee "Weight Loss Challenge" health and wellness program. The challenge was to see who could lose the most pounds - as a percentage of their beginning weight - over the six months of the program. We had 24 participants in the program (over half of our small employee base) - all of whom were committed to an even healthier lifestyle.

    When the final weigh-ins were taken, the group had lost an average of 17 pounds per participant. Matt Havas, director of business systems & operations, was the overall winner after shedding 29% of his body weight. When asked what was his biggest challenge, Matt responded by saying "Consistency was my biggest obstacle. It's one thing to eat healthy for a few days, but to do it over a long period of time really takes a commitment and persistence. It's okay to splurge every now and then, but the majority of the time you really need to watch what you're eating to make sure you don't have unhealthy weight gains."

    The same can be said for shipping and logistics. It might be okay - even necessary - to spend a little more on your shipping to make sure a shipment is delivered to an important customer or client. However, the majority of the time businesses really need to do all they can to ensure they aren't taking on "unhealthy shipping expenses." So it takes a commitment and persistence to keep your business healthy for the long run. Here is the PartnerShip recipe for a successful "weight loss challenge" in your shipping:

    It may take a strong commitment and persistence to shed unhealthy shipping expenses - but thankfully you have a trusted training partner in PartnerShip who can help you through all of the activities above.

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  • A PartnerShip Profile: Old Dominion Freight Line

    07/10/2012 — Matt Nagel

    Old Dominion Freight Line, or "OD" as they are often referred, provides less-than-truckload (LTL) freight services with nationwide coverage across all regions of the United States. Based in North Carolina, Old Dominion focuses their LTL services domestically with 217 service centers which ensures that your LTL freight gets there on time and as promised.


    Through the PartnerShip alliance with Old Dominion, customers can access competitive LTL freight rates, create bills of lading, print labels, and track shipments on PartnerShip.com. Old Dominion offers regional and inter-regional LTL freight service with very competitive transit times and pricing. The map below shows the six Old Dominion regions and U.S. service coverage. Some other advantages PartnerShip customers have by using Old Dominion for LTL freight services are:

    • Comprehensive U.S. service coverage with competitive transit times and pricing.

    • One of the most efficient and financially stable LTL carriers in the industry.

    • Additional OD services available upon request through PartnerShip:

      • Security Divider Service which provides guaranteed, locked-in security. Your freight is locked securely into place on a trailer at its origin, and is not unlocked until it reaches its final destination.

      • OD Expedited which provides daily on-time and guaranteed deliveries within normal transit times or time-specific windows.

    If you have any questions regarding Old Dominion services, or special LTL freight shipping needs that Old Dominion might be able to address, call your dedicated PartnerShip sales representative at 800-599-2902.

    If you are interested in receiving an Old Dominion rate quote for an upcoming LTL freight shipment, log on to PartnerShip.com, or create a web account if you haven't already done so.

    Old Dominion Map

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  • 99% Fat-Free Business for Retailers

    07/03/2012 — Scott Frederick

    PartnerShip Lean Logistics WebinarPartnerShip recently had the opportunity to co-facilitate a webinar with our sister company, NACSCORP. The webinar was titled 99% Fat-Free Business: Get Lean by Reducing Sourcing & Logistics Costs, and was for the benefit of college stores and retailers that are looking to get more efficient with their inbound and outbound sourcing and logistics. The "dietary consultants" presenting the material were Polly Myers, program manager with PartnerShip, and Kevin McNamara, sales manager with NACSCORP.

    On the sourcing side, Kevin talked about getting on the scale to assess where opportunities existing for sourcing efficiencies. These include determining time spent per purchase order, investigating labor costs, estimating average order sizes, analyzing inbound freight expenses, and understanding the impact of returns and credits. Some good lean sourcing practices discussed by Kevin include:

    • Effectively deploy and use POS systems

    • Consolidate inbound orders to ease store burden

    • Analyze returns to improve buying habits

    On the logistics side, Polly talked about reducing shipping expenses by using a number of lean logistics techniques. Supported with numerous real-life examples, Polly discussed each of these techniques in some detail:

    • Determine your current freight rates

    • Use PartnerShip to negotiate better LTL freight pricing

    • Consolidate your orders for lower shipping rates

    • Select the correct mode and service level

    • Optimize your inbound shipping with vendors

    • Consolidate invoicing to reduce administration

    The bottom-line message for college stores was that they should feel confident that NACS has resources to help them analyze and reduce their sourcing and logistics costs. If you're interested in a replay of this webinar, or in any of the topics discussed, just let us know at http://ship.partnership.com/learnmore

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