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How to Boost Holiday Season Sales at Your Truckstop

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

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/// Guest post by contributor Chuck White, DAS Companies, Inc.

Even as we enjoy the heat of summer, it’s time to plan for hot seasonal sales on cold winter days. When devising a holiday season promotional plan it’s important to consider your customer segments, their key demographics, and what needs they have on this seasonal travel occasion. With these considerations in mind, seasonal promotions will result in higher quantity, more profitable sales.

So, who is our customer? Obviously, professional drivers are the primary audience in travel centers. Yet, as we have improved our facilities, increased our services, and added recognized restaurant brands, we have attracted other key customer segments. Road warrior business travelers, both blue and white collar, are a significant secondary audience. And, with major 4th quarter holidays, leisure-travelling families offer major short-term, seasonal traffic.

Once we understand our mix of customers, we then need to consider their key demographics:  Are they male or female? Is their income high or low? Are they married? Do they have children, with them or at home? What are their interests and hobbies? 

When “mapping” demographic attributes to each customer segment, key needs begin to emerge. In parallel, when we overlay seasonal factors like weather and holidays, related timely needs emerge. For example, our customers might need to: charge mobile devices, navigate bad weather, ensure passenger safety, travel comfortably, overcome boredom, and/or find a gift. And consider that often someone’s favorite gift is one they self-gift to reward themselves.

At last, we are able to prioritize solutions against these customer-centric, seasonal needs.

For professional drivers:

  • Winterize your rig to optimize performance with Howe’s anti-gel diesel treatment and Gunk windshield de-icer.
  • Reward yourself with low-stress driving with Garmin® GPS, Top Dawg dash cam, Cobra® iRadar™ or a RoadKing® Bluetooth headset.
  • Gift your son a licensed die-cast tractor trailer or your daughter a plush stuffed animal

For business travelers:

  • Power up your devices with PowerDrive™ inverters and MobileSpec® phone chargers.
  • Be prepared for bad weather with RoadPro® roadside emergency and first aid kits.
  • Always have a light handy with LumaGear™ flashlights.

For leisure travelers:

  • Improve your listening experience with MobileSpec® Chords audio headsets.
  • Travel comfortably with a RoadPro® 12-volt powered blanket, heater, or lunchbox.
  • Keep warm with Black Canyon Outfitters™ hats, gloves, thermals, and jackets.

These are just several timely promotions that will appeal to one specific or multiple customer segments. 

As importantly, we need to ensure that these seasonal promotions are effectively advertised and merchandised along the path of our customers. Think of effective communication as “breadcrumbs” along a path that converts a “where’s the bathroom” browser into an impulse buyer. So, we must convince customers to shop through compelling communication on pump-toppers, window posters, advertising circulars, counter and aisle shippers, wing racks, and end caps. 

If we want to celebrate great holiday season sales later, then it’s time to devise our plan now.  If we start with our specific customer segments’ needs in mind, then we will offer better-fit, timely, seasonal solutions that will ring our registers like holiday bells.

 

{Guest Post} Guest post provided by NATSO Chairman's Circle member Chuck White, DAS Companies, Inc. DAS Companies, Inc. is a full service marketing and global supply chain portfolio company based in Palmyra, PA.  Privately-held, DAS Companies, Inc., designs, imports, and distributes automotive accessories, travel merchandise, and mobile electronics that add safety, convenience, comfort and leisure to on-the-go consumers, through a series of channel partnerships including Travel Centers, Heavy Duty Trucking Centers, and Electronics & Specialty Retailers. 

The opinions and advice given by guest post contributors are not necessarily those of NATSO Inc. The posts should not be considered legal advice. Qualified professionals should be sought regarding advice and questions specific to your circumstances.

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About the Author

Chuck White

Chuck White

Like you, Chuck is passionate about serving customers. His marketing mind is always running a mile a minute. Chuck serves as Vice President; Brands & Marketing for DAS Companies, a full service marketing & global supply chain portfolio company. Chuck leads DAS’s go-to-market strategic plan, bringing North America’s leading portfolio of on-the-go products to convenience and electronics retailers. Prior to joining DAS, Chuck spent two decades with Armstrong World Industries—building brands, devising marketing strategies, developing products, designing merchandising, and leading sales. Mostly, Chuck just helps teams win.