Freight brokers are not paid by the hour. Instead, they are paid based on the loads they cover. So, how do freight brokers find loads? Read on to learn 9 ways to find loads to ship.
1. Establish a Referral Program
A referral program is a process that incentivizes satisfied customers to recommend your services to their contacts. Ask the shippers you work with if any of their colleagues are looking for freight brokers. Provide gifts or discounts to clients who connect you with other shippers.
2. Re-Engage Cold Accounts
If you have any shippers on your list who have stopped using your freight brokerage services, consider reaching out. In many cases, business relationships fade because a key contact changes jobs. If that is the case, reaching out creates the opportunity to introduce yourself to the new contact and learn where the previous connection is working, as they may also need your services at their new place of business.
On the other hand, reaching out may reveal that a shipper stopped working with you due to an issue. In this case, you have the opportunity to address the problem and potentially recover the business relationship.
3. Build on Your Existing Networks
Your existing clients are excellent resources for new clients. Research your shippers to learn if they have other locations, subsidiaries, or departments that may also need your freight brokerage. Ask contacts if they are willing to introduce you to other members of their company who may need help with shipping. Leverage these connections from your existing networks to expand your business.
4. Use a Load Board
A load board is one of the most common ways carriers, shippers, and brokers connect to move freight. It is an online marketplace where you can post loads and find a suitable carrier for the job. You will likely need to pay a subscription fee to gain access if you work independently. Alternatively, if you work for a company, you typically have access to load boards as part of your job.
5. Make Warm Calls
Cold calls can quickly become warm when you come prepared with the right information. Leverage your network and expertise to research and discover shippers that may benefit from your freight brokerage services. Reaching out to someone through a mutual connection, with a shared interest, or with unique insight into their needs can improve your odds of getting through to the person and being able to talk about business.
6. Offer to be the Backup
Often, a shipper would be happy to work with you, but they already have a regular broker. In these cases, offer to be the backup in case their existing broker cannot fulfill their requests. If ever a time arises that you can solve their problem, you will have the opportunity to solidify a relationship that can lead to long-term business.
7. Cultivate a Positive Reputation
People talk. But it is not just the horror stories that get around. Reports of positive experiences and reliability also spread quickly. Cultivate a positive reputation by providing reliable and accurate service. When shippers brag about their excellent shipping experiences to their colleagues, you get the best free marketing.
8. Prepare Your Talking Points
When the market competition is tight, it can be hard enough to get a prospective shipper on the phone. When you do make contact, you need to make the most of the opportunity to convert them into a client. If a shipper is going to change brokers, it is because they believe you can offer what their current broker cannot. Before the call, conduct research, so you have a clear understanding of their products and needs. Prepare your talking points, so they understand your availability, reliability, and trustworthiness.
Become a Freight Broker with First Star Logistics
Although freight brokers can work independently, many brokers find it preferable to work with a logistics company that can provide access to proprietary load booking and management software and extensive customer networks.
First Star Logistics is a unique asset-based global brokerage company with over 60 years of experience. We empower our freight brokers to succeed by allowing them to create your goals, networks, and make their own money. Our freight broker training program allows brokers to start out as a trainee, or as an experienced broker. Our talented freight brokers enjoy the highest commissions in the industry, proprietary software to find loads, weekly pay, potential sign on bonus with book of business, 24/7 agent support so they can be as productive as possible, and more customer saturation.
We are looking to expand our brokerage department by hiring enthusiastic individuals wanting a fast-paced career in the logistics industry. To join the First Star team, apply today.