Sonwil Transporation is a 4th generation family-owned 3PL offering warehouse, distribution, fulfillment, logistics, transportation, technology and real estate services operating in New York, New Jersey, Georgia, Texas, Nevada and California.
When Jason Ickert started with Sonwil, the driver recruiting process that was in place was not producing the required result. Sonwil had several unseated over-the-road tractors and day cabs which weren’t being optimally slip seated to support Sonwil’s 24/7/365 operations. Unseated tractors and non-optimized fleets have both a tangible cost as well as a negative revenue implication.
Jason reached out to Lionel Johnston with Farmers Marketing Inc., and they discussed the creation and implementation of a driver recruiting system that would use contemporary sales and marketing tactics to draw driver recruits into the pipeline, through a vetting and hiring process, at an improved velocity and with a lower conversion cost than what Sonwil was currently experiencing. Lionel and the team engaged with Sonwil in August 2021.
As of March 2022, 26 drivers, equivalent to 40% of Sonwil's fleet, have been hired over 8 months with an advertising cost per hire of only $1,500!  

In this session, we'll present our process, the strategies we executed, and the revisions we made while in the pursuit of qualified drivers. We'll share actual examples of our work and our results, and have a frank discussion about how many trucking companies get it wrong when hiring drivers.  


Jason Ickert, President, Sonwil Logistics

Jason is a member of the TMSA Board and has served on the education, marketing, and membership committees. He has more than 25 years in global logistics, primarily in commercial leadership roles. In the last 15 years, he has been hyper-focused on North American trucking and freight brokerage. In addition to revenue generation, Jason has held responsibility for freight brokerage cold starts and P&L performance.

In 2021, Jason joined Sonwil Logistics | Sonwil Transportation in Buffalo NY where he assumed leadership of their freight brokerage and trucking divisions. In this role, Jason owns operational execution and compliance, asset development, logistics and transportation finance, commercial success and profitability, human resource allocation, logistics technology and real estate.

Sonwil is a 4th generation family owned 3PL offering warehouse, distribution, fulfillment, logistics, transportation, technology and real estate services operating in New York, New Jersey, Georgia, Texas, Nevada and California.

Lionel Johnston

Lionel Johnston, Founder and Managing Director, Farmers Marketing Inc. 

Lionel has several decades of sales and recruitment marketing experience, recruiting sales reps, franchisees, and thousands of truck drivers. In his last corporate role, he led marketing for Bison Transport and its two subsidiaries for seven years. This included all aspects of internal and external communication and marketing. He increased Bison's permission-based audience from zero to 50,000+ and was responsible for attracting hundreds of driver recruits per year. Bison Transport is widely recognized as an industry leader and one of North America's fastest-growing, and safest fleets.

Currently, Lionel is the Managing Director of Farmers Marketing Inc, and they help businesses increase revenue by building a modern marketing machine that consistently produces leads and customers/new hires. This transformation through marketing is delivered through coaching, courses, and/or fractional CMO services. Farmers Marketing specializes in driver recruitment marketing, and they are an official HubSpot Solutions partner. Lionel and the Farmers team, engaged with Sonwil to discover what Sonwil's value proposition was for drivers and successfully developed and deployed a recruitment marketing system to continuously produce leads to meet Sonwil's growing demand for drivers.