Become Part of the Problem-Solving Business
As one of the world's largest shipping and delivery companies, UPS traditionally highlighted its reliable logistics services in its marketing and branding efforts. Now, the century-old company is tackling broader business problems. In a new campaign that aired early last month, UPS states, "Bring us your daydreams, your ‘ahas,’ your easier-said-than dones … We're in the problem-solving business."
The spot mirrors what we aim to accomplish for our clients, and is a strategy all third-party logistics providers should also consider. A great fulfillment partner is one that can help business owners accomplish their goals by providing trust, excitement and new opportunities for both the brands themselves and their customers. Here are tips on how providers and retailers can better work together to improve not only fulfillment and logistics, but the brand overall:
1. Form a partnership. A partnership allows retailers to accomplish what they can't do alone. Businesses should partner with a trusted third party to assist with major logistical needs, especially when these tasks can impact brand reputation. Fulfillment providers should provide the same, and retailers should seek partners that are equally committed.
Why is this important? A brand often comes to work with a third-party logistics partner during its emergence stage. The brand is experiencing rapid growth where demand is high, and it's difficult to keep up with the increasing pace of operations. While working with a third-party logistics partner is necessary to get through this perilous stage, brands are often hesitant to open critical operational aspects of their business, like shipping and packing, to an outside party.
These areas have a significant impact on how consumers view their brand, so the risk is high. If the packaging design isn't consistent with the brand or products aren't delivered on time, consumers will likely blame the retailer itself. Retailers, therefore, should seek partners that are an extension of their in-house team rather than just a vendor. The relationship should always be collaborative and put the customer first.
Maria is CEO and co-founder of Dotcom Distribution, where she has played an integral role in developing and defining all aspects of the operation, including sales and marketing, operations, finance and IT. Her strategic leadership helps the Board and senior management to establish long-range goals, strategies, plans, and policies. Maria has developed the systemic and procedural infrastructure necessary to provide timely and accurate analysis of budgets, financial reports and financial trends in order to assist the Board, senior executives and clients in performing their responsibilities. Maria holds a CPA. Prior to founding Dotcom, she began her career as an Auditor at Arthur Andersen and was the CFO of GoodTimes Home Video.