Contributing author Joey Slaughter is the owner of Blue Ridge Transport, LLC. A Ringgold, VA based carrier. Joey started his company in 2010 after serving time as an unhappy employee with a local trucking company. The time spent there was not fun but, in hindsight, was a turning point that propelled Joey into the wonderful world of being an entrepreneur. Please visit JoeySlaughter.net for more insightful blogging.
I started driving professionally back in 1992. If you were to tell me then that one day I’ll have a cell phone in my truck that can communicate with people all over the world at any time, I would’ve never believed you. However, that technology is here and it fits in the palm of my hand. I recommend that you download Twitter on your smart phone; its a free app and a very powerful and efficient communication tool.
Twitter is an online service that enables its users to send and read messages that are limited to 140 characters. These messages are called “tweets.” You can “follow” whoever you want and you find them through searches for keywords. This sign, #, used to be called a number sign, but technology has changed it to a hashtag. Simply type in the hashtag (#) then use a keyword to search for users who are talking about the subjects you are interested in. For example, I search #trucking, #otr, #carhauling, #teamrunsmart, #freightliner, #stepdeck to name a few. These searches will quickly gather data indicating other users who use the same hashtags and tweet about the same subjects.
When tweeting, if you want a certain user to be alerted of your tweet, you add their “handle” in the body of the tweet. For example, my handle on Twitter is @blueridgetran, so you’d tweet–-Keep on trucking @blueridgetran. The order doesn’t matter, only that the user’s handle is in the tweet. Also, add a hashtag to your tweet if you want others who may be interested in it to find it. For example, ELD mandate on the horizon within the #trucking industry.
I have two Twitter accounts; @BlueRidgeTran which is strictly trucking and business related and then I have a personal account where I follow friends, athletes, political pundits and celebrities. Twitter moves at the speed of light compared to Facebook. If something significant happens in the world, it’ll be on Twitter within seconds. I’ve gotten to know several truck drivers from all over the world through Twitter. One day, a carhauling Twitter friend of mine in the United Kingdom was tweeting about a Rolls Royce that he just delivered and I asked him about it. He immediately sent me a picture of it that he took seconds earlier. I was able to see what he was seeing half way around the globe almost in real time! If you decide to dive in, make sure you contact me @blueridgetran!!