Competition’s Echo

August-September 2019

John Bendel


Let’s call it the “echo effect.” You shout “hello” into a canyon, the sound bounces off the walls, and you near lots of “hellos,” one right after another. Something like that is going on in the tracking business. When one company offers the new-style predictive tracking to customers, its competitors often do the same.

The original company may do more with the tracking data than simply pass it on to customers. Maybe they use it to evaluate carriers or transportation modes. Maybe they connect tracking to big-time corporate software like SAP (a popular corporate management system) to help manage the flow of products and materials around the world.

Often enough, their competitor doesn’t have the resources or the need to work with that data. They don’t have SAP or any other brand of all-encompassing software. They want the tracking services just so they can tell their customers – whether those customers care or not – “We have that too!”

So if you’re wondering why required tracking technology is growing so fast, just think of copy-cat companies shouting into a canyon and hearing the echo of competition:

“We have that too! We have that too! We have that too! We have that too!” LL


John Bendel

John Bendel is Land Line’s contributing editor-at-large. A former trucker, former editor at National Lampoon, and longtime truck writer, John is an author, photographer, and freelancer for New York Times. There’s more, but in short, his insight and matchless style of writing makes “Gizmos and Gears” a runaway reader favorite.