have adopted a kind of 'reverse' deployment strategy, where i deploy my main units first, and then reactively deploy supporting units. The main reason for this is because of how i generally build my lists. Almost every army i own follows the following basic list building strategy...
3 Healthy size combat Infantry blocks (majority of my points)
Supporting units (chariots, cavalry, fast cav, skirmishers, monsters, etc.)
I have time and time again tried to deploy the supporting units, which includes trash, first so that i can reactively deploy my main battle line, but the main battle line almost always ends up in the same spot, in the middle of the board, with the bsb and general deployed in the center unit, which is usually a specific unit that was taken to bunker the bsb and/or general, with the 2 additional combat units deployed on either side of the bunker. This is where my main battle line can get full BsB + General coverage, and generally maneuver the most effectively. Lets face it, if you play against a Warrior of Chaos army that has a unit of 24-30 Warriors and 2 units of 50-60 Great Weapon Marauders, do you really not know where the units are going? lol. Same can be said about a Slaan + Temple Guard with 2 units of Saraus/Skrox.
What the OP states about indirectly dictating where the opponent deploys is what i have found to generally be true. I start by deploying my 3 main battle units, with the most elite unit bunkering my General and BSB in the middle of the board, and the other 2 (usually) identical combat units on either side of the bunker. By doing this i have set the place for the main battle, and usually dictate that my opponent will deploy their most killy/survivable unit in the center of the table directly across from my bunker, with other combat units or combat supporting units to face of with my other 2 combat units. Generally, what i have described above almost always happens.
Now, after the enemy has deployed trash and, usually, supporting units, and now that i know where the main battle is going to take place, i then deploy my supporting units to counter his supporting units and trash redirectors, assist one of my flank combat units that got paired against a solid counter, as well as assist on, usually, a flank that i want to roll up. As long as a list has reliable means to remove enemy trash/redirecting units, you don't have to try to out deploy your opponent by taking excess trash units.
I want to emphasize that my deployment strategy is not necessarily necessarily better than the common 'trash first, combat units second' strategy, but that for particular list builds, i have found it to be far more effective.