DHL is one of the world’s biggest logistics companies, delivering more than 1.3 billion parcels in over 220 countries and territories annually. As a result, daily operations gather massive amounts of information and invaluable insights into how products move around the globe.
It isn’t enough, however, to have gold in the ground; one must know how to mine it. With a sizable amount of relevant content online, DHL needed marketing and a cohesive approach to strategy and design.
To affirm its global leadership, four questions had to be answered: how do people get interested in the content, how are interactions made enjoyable and informative, how can DHL own “top of mind”? And—more importantly—how does it stay there?
Strategy revolved around putting DHL in the driver’s seat of a conversation that cut across several touchpoints. Pairing fresh ideas with robust digital strategy, these touchpoints also give DHL the chance to showcase different areas of the business.
It began at the macro level, with sites for branded content Logistics of Things and Global Trade Barometer or GTB. Word spread through ad and email campaigns that excited, inspired, and amplified reach. On a micro level, the conversation kept going with content designed for actual conversations—a fun and friendly WhatsApp sticker pack for interactions between sales staff and clients.
Each digital experience required a different approach. For Logistics of Things, an in-depth UX study and audit was conducted using Hotjar recordings and Google Analytics—understanding visitors by their touchpoints, data from heat maps, as well as where visitors would eventually drop off.
Later, marketing centred on well-performing stories in ads that used motion graphics to grab attention. With rich and dynamic content of high value, the campaign attracted and retained quality readership.
On the site itself, article readership was monitored through scroll tracking while extensive multi-tiered testing was conducted across platforms, creatives, and targeting options. This resulted in getting the lowest cost-per-unbounce. The best-performing channels and campaigns were identified, and what was learned was applied to subsequent efforts.
For the GTB, design and DHL teams worked closely to transform the experience of retrieving data. High fidelity wireframes were developed, which led to an interface that championed interactivity, user-friendliness, and efficiency. Popular features include the country comparator where two countries’ export and import data could easily be compared.
GTB marketing broke down complex trade data into digestible graphics that increased visual engagement and aided understanding. Visuals featuring countries as ships or planes highlighted the country comparator feature and brought the core concept to life. To encourage more traffic, the site was optimised for mobile and cross-sharing content with the Logistics of Things.
Marketing campaigns drove awareness and readership on various platforms—Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, GDN, Search, and Outbrain. Other efforts included restructuring email marketing strategy to increase email open rates. After streamlining the database, a system for sending out Logistics of Things EDMs and follow-ups was established, one which optimised engagement rates. For subscribers who had ceased opening DHL emails, a WinBack campaign recaptured their interest and loyalty.
These touchpoints affirmed DHL’s leadership and continue to generate interest. With its human-interest stories about different things moving around the world, Logistics of Things achieved quality readership— driving content consumption and email sign-ups with key features like text-to-speech, article bookmarking, and article recommendations.
The GTB remains an invaluable traffic retainer tool, providing easy access to indexes and insights previously only available as reports. Making content easy to find, readable, and even enjoyable, the GTB is DHL’s “eye on the world” as an authority on global trends.
EDM open rates increased; WhatsApp stickers added branded fun and personality to otherwise transactional chats and remains popular among staff. In addition to these results, DHL also gained significant consumer insights—invaluable in making and pursuing marketing strategy.
With insights, ideas, and the eagerness to see it through, DHL continues to dominate the conversation—reinforcing existing relationships while winning new ones.