Marketing Strategy of Roadie
|✓ Paper Type: Free Assignment||✓ Study Level: University / Undergraduate|
|✓ Wordcount: 2070 words||✓ Published: 12th Nov 2020|
Roadie is a startup founded in 2016, based in the Atlanta Tech Village. Roadie takes unused space in passenger vehicles by connecting senders with drivers that are already heading in the same direction. Roadie works with airlines such as Delta, top retailers, and grocers to provide fast, efficient, and scalable solutions for nation-wide deliveries. Roadie’s app-based community uses vacant space in passenger vehicles, connecting users with things to send with drivers who are currently heading in that direction. Roadie has proven to be a faster, cheaper, friendlier way to get your goods from point A to point B. The Roadie app enables efficient, low-cost delivery for senders and rewards drivers for trips they were already taking, offering members of the community a variety of benefits including free roadside assistance, roadside discounts, and tax write-offs on miles they were already driving.
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Roadie’s business model offers a faster, cheaper, efficient way to move goods. It offers perks for drivers who are also a customer segment. Among drivers, customers segments include grocers, Omni channel retailers, grocers, airlines, and the auto-parts industry. Roadie uses feedback systems to get feedback from these customers. Customer communication is also a key activity in Roadie’s business model canvas. Roadie reaches customers through key partnerships (Delta Cargo, Home Depot, Goodwill, and General Motors), blogs, SEO, and publicity. Revenue is earned from deliveries, and it's based size and location. Roadie's essential resources are its tech platform and research experts. Their cost structure is based on software, research, and development, and it’s drivers.
Roadie has had many articles and blogs written about them since they were first founded. Although it’s unknown if the writers were paid, it’s safe to say Roadie is leveraging this traction channel. From tech blogs to startup articles, Roadie has made quite a few features in places where the tech industry interested is sure to be. Another customer segment easily reached through this channel is business owners. Many business owners stay up to date on industry growth and business scaling methods. Roadie also has their blog where they utilize search engine optimization to reach more consumers. Most serious bloggers are also using SEO, so the two channels interact often. This is an active channel for the startup since it are reaching retailers- a significant consumer segment. Many blogs and articles mention the low-cost and efficiency of delivering and receiving with Roadie, so it’s a model any savvy business owner or major company could easily be keen on.
Roadie is certainly a startup that has gotten a lot of publicity since it first began. They have been featured in articles on sites such as CNBC, TechCrunch, Fortune, The Wall Street Journal, and many more. When smaller sites write articles on growing companies, it allows for these stories to be picked up by more prominent news outlets who pull from these kinds of sites. This has played contributed to major growth for the company because it not only reaches more potential consumers, but it can be more easily seen and taken seriously by Fortune 500 companies such as Delta or The Home Depot. This channel works great when utilizing social media, as well. For example, Twitter is an excellent place to reach reporters and get your story circulating. Reddit can be another place to post articles about a new startup venture since there is a big tech community on the site. Roadie has many compelling articles about its newsworthy milestones, which is highlighted in Traction. Any time you can build on emotion, there is an opportunity to drive traffic to your site, which is why this a very effective method for a startup like Roadie.
There wasn’t much evidence online to show that Roadie is using this channel in their business model. However, the company could use this method to their benefit, especially since they have already been able to gain so much publicity. Few companies try their hand at gaining publicity in eclectic was, but Roadie has begun to be nationally recognized, and unconventional PR would have the potential to propel Roadie into a house-hold name. To get this channel into the company's middle ring, they should focus on running a few inexpensive tests that could test the ability of this channel. Focusing more on strategy is more important than tactic since all you need is one noteworthy stunt for this channel to reap the benefits. Success in this channel can be unpredictable, so it's best to have an established brainstorming process while being creative and original. Customer appreciation is also key in this channel since it will build up unconventional PR over time. Customer appreciation can be shown through gifts, contests, rewards, and fantastic customer support.
Search Engine Marketing
To test if Roadie is currently using this method to gain traction, I typed in a few different searches to see if they would come up in pay-per-click ads. I did a search on “package delivery for retailers," and Roadie was the first site out of the listings. This was an organic result due to the traction Roadie has been gaining in that industry. After conducting multiple searches, it can be concluded that Roadie isn't using this traction channel. With all of the success Roadie has been having in the last few years, I don't think that this channel would make a massive difference in their growth. They could test this method by creating a few inexpensive ads and testing the number of impressions gained since people who are currently having the issue would be led to the company's site. However, if Roadie has been coming out on top of related searches, it would be counterproductive to implement this method.
Social and Display Ads
Based on research it doesn't seem like Roadie is using social and display advertising. The niche that Roadie is targeting is most likely better reached through blog publicity, which seems to be Roadie's major channels. Social and display ads reach individual consumers well, but Roadie is targeting companies and retailers. The only platform for using social advertising that might work well could be LinkedIn since there are account monitors and people working for major companies on this site. The company could test this channel by displaying a few ads on LinkedIn, Reddit, and Facebook since you can find company pages on there as well.
Upon researching, no immediate proof leads to the belief that Roadie uses online advertising as a channel, but they could certainly benefit from it. Offline ads include print, tv and radio, billboards, and direct mail. Running a middle test on direct mail to small business owners could be a great way to get their attention. Another test idea could be finding remnant ad space for cheap. This is vacant space in newspapers or local publications. If this method proved useful, then billboards would probably be a great way to advertise in a big city or suburb. This would be a great way to get the attention of mom-and-pop shops, independent business owners, and local retailers.
Search Engine Optimization
Almost all businesses use SEO, including Roadie. SEO involves other channels, such as publicity and content marketing. Roadie uses SEO in their blog posts and all along their website to make sure that when potential customers search for their keywords, they appear. Writing blogs for their site also involves content marketing. Roadie writes compelling articles that will drive readers to their website, not just based on their product. Since Roadie uses publicity as another channel, the blog posts and articles that mention them also link back to them. This channel targets online users who are apart of the customer segment who may use Roadie for personal or omnichannel retailer use. This traction method seems to be more of a supporting role to the company as opposed to a prominent strategy. This method seems to be more effective in reaching a select customer segment, while other ways are better for reaching different segments. It's essential to put a focus on your seemingly smaller segments because niche audiences have niche needs that can be met by a company with a unique business model.
Roadie dedicates a portion of it's website to content marketing. This includes blog posts, case studies, company success stories, news stories, press releases, and even more to drive people back to their site. This is a critical aspect of distribution for the company, but it isn’t a main strategy for the startup. Users are lead to the Roadie blog by looking up keywords related to the site. The majority of Roadies content surrounds the company as opposed to having a large array of tech-related articles. Perhaps if Roadie expanded its content, it could reach more people and gain more recognition. Having a strong and diverse blog gives leverage to many other channels, including publicity, email marketing, SEO, event marketing, etc. If these tests work, the company can begin to widen the scale to regional or national offline advertising.
Although not explicitly stated upon research, it’s safe to say that Roadie is using email marketing. Roadie connects with business owners as well as drivers who are employed by the company. Using email marketing is a nice way to connect with customers personally. Emails can be tailored to certain companies' usage of the service. Drivers would get different updates than shippers. This is an important method when it comes to retaining customers; however, this would be more of a supporting strategy for the company.
Many startups use viral marketing as a primary channel for gaining traction. Roadie has leverage viral marketing because they are popular in certain subgroups like cargo and grocers. For a company like Roadie, viral marketing is more likely a primary traction channel, since it can take place by word-of-mouth, internet usage, social media, and many more. The idea behind viral marketing is that it is user-generated marketing. The more a customer interacts with a service or brand, the more opportunities they are creating for themselves to talk about the brand. This traction channel can involve other channels such as SEO and publicity. When someone uses Roadie's services, they receive emails regarding feedback and news about the company. This is viral marketing, and it encourages the user to continue interacting with the service. Customer satisfaction is a part of publicity, so when consumers receive emails asking for feedback or offering promotions, this gives them an incentive to keep using the service.
Engineering as Marketing
Engineering as marketing is a very underutilized marketing method, but it has proven to have successful results when done well. This would be a great channel to implement in the company's business model. It could be harder to test, considering you may need a different engineering and research team to create sites or tools that would lead to Roadie’s main landing page. One way Roadie could do a middle ring test on this strategy is by creating a microsite for blogs related to efficient technology. This site could include how-to articles and advice columns solving common problems people are experiencing in the industry.
- Traction by Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares
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