Getting to know you

Did you know that 12 percent of Overdrive’s married owner-operator readers have team-driving spouses who accompany them all the time? That 39 percent of our readers have a truck under warranty?

And 42 percent of you believe fuel quality does not differ among suppliers?
Well, I didn’t know these factoids. At least not until I read the new edition of our Market Behavior Report, produced by Martin Labbe Associates. In addition to riding with truckers, going to truck stops, attending trucking shows and doing lengthy phone interviews, this report, based on thousands of mailings, is one way our editors find out what makes you tick. Our advertisers, too, benefit from this research. They learn exactly who they can reach through our pages and what your buying preferences are. (Thanks to members of the Overdrive Round Table who’ve taken time to fill out the extensive surveys – and best of luck on our cash sweepstakes.)

Is there a typical owner-operator who emerges from all this data? You are 41 to 60 years old. You have completed high school and maybe some college. Most of you own a computer – typically a home computer, and you use it primarily for business. When you buy a truck, reliability and durability are more than twice as important to you than brand image or interior cab appearance. Your average length of haul is more than 500 miles one way, and you drive 90,000 to 130,000 miles a year. You spend less than an hour at half of your truck stop visits, but you sacrifice 10 to 20 hours a week at the docks.

Of course, these facts barely scratch the surface. There’s a lot more in our report about owner-operators – the reasons you have for buying certain things, the brands you prefer and how you feel about changing carriers. Our editors will continue to bring you those details as they pertain to our stories. In the meantime, if you have questions on specific areas, please call me at (800) 633-5953. I’m always eager to know the individuals behind the averages, the people who make this industry hum.

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