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  • SPAREFOOT VOTED “BEST ONLINE DIRECTORY” SECOND YEAR IN A ROW
    By Joel on August 16, 2012 | Comments Off  Comments

    For the second year in a row, SpareFoot has been awarded “Best Online Directory” in the Inside Self-Storage Best of Business reader-choice poll. Launched in 2011, the poll solicits online votes from industry professionals, who elect their favorite vendors in about 30 categories. SpareFoot will be honored with a profile page in ISS magazine as well as during a special ceremony at the ISS World Expo in Las Vegas in April

    “It is awesome to be chosen for Best Online Directory for the second year in a row. Our clients and friends in the industry made it happen, so we thank them for their vote and ongoing support,” SpareFoot CEO Chuck Gordon said.

    About SpareFoot
    SpareFoot is the world’s largest online marketplace for consumers to find and reserve self-storage units, with comparison shopping tools that show real-time availability and exclusive deals. We also offer web marketing solutions for storage facility owners and operators. Our AdNetwork tool helps facilities modernize their marketing and win new tenants online. SpareFoot AdNetwork listings get more traffic than any comparable directory, featuring software integration and ROI-proving analytics. This fun and cool tech startup is headquartered in Austin, TX.

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  • SpareFoot Releases Free Tenant Value Calculator For Self-Storage Businesses
    By Joel on May 10, 2012 | 183 Comments183 Comments  Comments

    AUSTIN, TX., May 8, 2012— SpareFoot, the online self-storage marketplace, announced the release of a free Tenant Value Calculator. The new interactive tool empowers storage facility owners and operators to understand the lifetime value of a new tenant, giving them an idea of how much prospective tenants are worth. For the first time, storage businesses can instantly compute this analytic using their real numbers around rental rate, length of tenancy, and acquisition cost.

    Brainchild of SpareFoot Account Manager Sara Richardson and built by Developer Evan Huston, the Tenant Value Calculator was created as a solution to a common problem for storage businesses— determining how much they should spend on marketing to earn ROI from every new tenant. It’s a notoriously tricky metric to determine, but essential to making informed marketing decisions.

    “They’re exact calculations, down to the penny. You can use it to calculate the ROI for one specific person, or your average,” Huston explained.

    The calculator adjusts in real-time based on user-entered data to reveal the date on which a storage facility can expect to profit from a new tenant. Two graphs illustrate revenue from a tenant over time. The calculator can also be used to compare the value of different marketing platforms, such as fliers or online efforts.

    “I’m excited anyone can use it, even without being a client,” Richardson said. “It gives facilities an idea of what our company is about.”

    The calculator was devised in one of SpareFoot’s company-wide, think-tank style Hack-A-Thons. At these monthly-ish events, any employee can pitch unique ideas for the development team to create outside of regular business operations.

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  • Your One Stop Blog Site
    By admin on April 2, 2008 | 97 Comments97 Comments  Comments

    If you want to learn about self storage, then you have come to the right place. The blogs that you will find on this website and other neighboring websites are full of information on the entire storage rental process. You can learn so many techniques when learning about self storage on these sites. You had better get your notebook ready to jot down the most important tips you may ever learn about storage.

    Self storage call center sales reps deal with so many hundreds and thousands of storage callers each month that they can give you the ins and outs regarding storage seekers. Self storage call center sales reps also take so many different types of inquiries and most know how to possibly handle each and every one of them. Some self storage call centers also have secret shopping departments. Many secret shopping companies have mastered the fine art of shopping people in the self storage industry. Secret shopping companies have learned how to critique self storage reps in the most effective way so the person shopped can increase their own skills to the best of their ability.

    Other topics in these self storage blogs include vehicle storage, boat, RV and trailer storage. There are also blogs about personal storage use versus the business that needs to store all of their files. How should you store your items in your unit in order to make the most of it? Also, you will find when the best time is to rent or even reserve storage to ensure that you will have a unit available for when you need it. You will read about what climate controlled units have to offer and why it could be the right choice for you. You will also learn about all of the different types of storage products readily available at your nearest storage facility to help you with your move. There are blogs about the different sizes offered at self storage properties and which size could be the right size or type of unit choice for you. 

    Blogs are becoming more popular everyday and you can probably find a blog website on any certain topic to help give you a better insight about the blog topic itself. Blogs are a great way to learn about a subject and it is entirely free. While the word Blog is a relatively new term, many people know what is means and many of those people have their own blogs. It is simply people talking about their own experiences and passing on that information to help others become more aware of what is involved with that particular topic. Here, this blog website is all about self storage. So take your time and read through them as there are many to choose from. This site tries to cover many topics about the self storage industry and the self storage business. One blog 6 days a week, every week of the year should be posted on this site. Bookmark this page so that you can readily and easily get back to check out the new blogs that are posted. By the way, the blogs are posted by several different employees and guests, so you are sure to hit various different storage topics. Stay tuned for more valuable pieces of self storage information.

    Automobile Storage

    Michigan Car Storage

    Franklin Park Storage

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  • Manage Your PhoneSmart Account Online
    By admin on October 3, 2007 | No Comments  Comments

    We have just recently changed the way that availability updates are being done.  I know our administration department is extremely happy, not to mention our clients.  There is now a website in which our self storage clients can log on and update their unit mix and availability.  Not only that, but can also manage their leads and reservations online that we send to them.  Everything included, as well as the notes that our Call Center reps took while discussing storage with them. 

    The program includes all of the customer’s information, what they were interested in and the price that we quoted to them.  It will show the number of units that are available as well as specials and unit prices.  Self storage owners don’t need to keep a paper trail anymore, as everything is stored on the computer, bringing this process to the 21st Century. Managers can also type in any notes regarding the prospect as well as set reminders as to when they need to call them back. This makes the entire process quick and easy to manage. 

    This is another great service that PhoneSmart offers our self storage clients and if you’d like to take advantage of the service, contact us at immediately. We can also give you the sales support needed to catch those missed calls. 

    Written by Robin Turner, Call Center Manager

    Thanks for reading our self storage business blog, where we talk about life in a self storage call center.

    78728 Car Storage

    Rent storage at 8514 Liberty Rd, Randallstown, MD 21133

    Are you moving to Kansas City, Missouri? Visit our partners at Kansas City, Missouri moving information center.

    Find Self Storage at your premier national and local self storage unit finder.

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  • Coming To A Theater Near You
    By admin on August 10, 2007 | 91 Comments91 Comments  Comments

    The self storage industry is always buzzing with trade shows, conferences, seminars, and more. At PhoneSmart, we’re no stranger to self storage associations across the country. We offer call center, secret shopping and sales training to self storage clients nationally and internationally.

    Tron will be racking up lots of frequent flyer miles this time of year. His itinerary looks much like a giant Where’s Waldo puzzle so chances are you’ll be able to catch his seminars and roundtable discussions near you.

    Take a look and be sure to attend his dynamic seminars:

    August 22-24 Missouri Self Storage Association
    Tron will be conducting roundtable discussions on Using Call Centers to Create More Rentals.
     
    September 5-8 Self Storage Association at Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada.
    Meet Sarah Little and Natalie Thomas from PhoneSmart’s Total Quality Assurance department. Tron will also present roundtable discussions, which are always popular.

    PhoneSmart will also have a booth there, stop by to find out about our awesome new sales training and secret shopping services.

    October 12 Wisconsin Self Storage Association at the Wisconsin Dells.
    Tron will do a breakout session on Getting Inside Your Customers’ Minds.

    October 30 through November 2 Florida Self Storage Association.
    Tron is giving a seminar on Training Your Staff to be Great Sales People.

    PhoneSmart will also have a booth at the trade show.

    November 8-9 California Self Storage Association
    PhoneSmart is a sponsor and Tron will be leading a roundtable discussion on Top Notch Sales Training.

    If you’d also like expert advice on quickly getting through airport security lines and effective suitcase packing, then Tron is your man.

    Presented by Sarah Little, TQA Account Executive

    Thanks for reading our self storage blog. We offer selling solutions to the self storage industry.

    Visit our Self Storage Pod Cast.

    Are you moving to San Antonio, Texas? Visit our partners San Antonio, Texas moving information center.

    Find self storage at 115 Park Ave, Basalt, CO 81621

    Find Self Storage at your premier national and local self storage unit finder.

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  • Want2Store Promo
    By admin on November 22, 2005 | 2 Comments2 Comments  Comments

    Free Website Details

    When you buy a link on Want2Store and get your free web site, this is what you get…

    Look at www.justestuff.com and see an example.

    Here you go:

    Possible Pages include:
    Email list page
    Driving direction page
    Calendar page
    Event page
    Online form
    List form (to build marketing lists)
    Bulletin board
    Document page
    Price page
    Picture page
    Frequently asked question
    List documents
    Benefits include:

    Professional Templates
    You can choose over 100 professionally designed and customizable templates to create your websites!

    No Software to download!
    The administration/publishing interface is web browser-based, so it can be accessed from anywhere in the world at anytime.

    Navigation Bar / Buttons / Menus
    Site Express allows you to create customizable / professional looking navigation menus and buttons.

    WYSIWYG browser based editor
    Interactive editor that allows you to style your html contents without knowing html codes or any other programming language. This editor is very similar to MS. FrontPage/Dreamweaver and it’s web based!

    Real Time Integrated Shopping Cart
    There is an integrated Shopping Cart that can be added VERY quickly. The shopping cart has real-time UPS shipping integration, 3rd party credit card processor integration, and a fully customizable administration utility.

    List Manager
    Build-in list manager that will allow your visitors to subscribe their email address to your site. You can then broadcast your advertisement or information to your subscribers as easy as 1-2-3!

    Real Time Stats
    Real time webstats that will display traffic and visitor information of your website. This will help you manage your growth and marketing directions!

    Page Colors
    Select from over 1000′s of background colors, text colors and link colors for that unique look.
    Background Images

    Most templates allow you to choose from over 100′s of background images for your page. The background images are optional. You can even upload your own!

    Image Library
    Select from over 1200 images in the image library.

    Icon Library
    Some of our templates use an Icon for the upper left of the page. You can select from our library or upload your own Icon.

    File Up-Loads
    File up-loads through the browser, both images and HTML files.

    File Management
    Complete file management through the browser. Eliminating all need for FTP. You can Up-Load Files, Rename Files, or Delete Files.

    Advanced Page Editor
    The HTML code for your pages can be edited at any time. You may add javascript or enhance your pages in any way.

    Manage Pages:
    Add, Remove, Or Delete a Main Page or a Sub-Page.
    Add/Edit content on pages, change the PageType, or change the name of a page. You can also “Change Page Order” or “Pages Per Line” in the manage pages section.

    Site Options:
    Change your header text, graphics, or colors. Change your websites lefthand graphic or your footer information. From the Site Options section you can also change your : Theme, Buttons, Metatags, or Site and Text Colors.

    Manage Images:
    View / Delete images that are currently available to your website. You can also upload new images to be available for content on your websites pages, or for product images.

    Company Information:
    Change your company information, footer information, administration password, or register a domain for your website.

    WebSite Marketing:
    Register your site on Search Engines, or do an email marketing campaign with all emails in you email list.

    E-Commerce Options:
    Activate and setup your e-commerce catalog on your website. You can add products that you want to sell, setup your shipping methods, setup a real-time credit card processor, or view orders that have been placed on your website. You can also view full website visitor statistics from this section.

    Manage Categories Section:
    This section allows you to add, edit, and delete categories from your catalog (place on your web site where your products are sold). Categories group up products so that customers can quickly find what they are looking for. If you delete a category, all the products under that category are not deleted, but you will have to assign them to a different category under the “Edit Products” section in order to have them visible in the catalog.

    Manage Products Section:
    This section allows you to add, edit, or delete products from your catalog. If you delete a product it is gone for good, but if you set a product’s status to “Inactive” then the product will not be seen from the website, but it will not be deleted from your catalog. To set a product to “Inactive” edit the product, and under the “Active Product:” section, set the drop-down to “No”.

    View Orders Section:
    This section allows you to view orders that have been placed on your website. You can view them by date ordered, by amount of the order, or all of the orders at once. Once you have the orders listed, you will see all the collected information about the order, and will have the option to delete the order (which is permanent) or you can bring up the printable version, which creates a order that is print formated.

    Shipping and Tax Section:
    This allows you to set shipping and tax options that are appropriate to your needs. The tax is figured out based on your state, and a percentage that you set. The shipping is more complex, and can be setup to fit almost any need. See the Help under the shipping section for a more detailed explaination.

    Real-Time Processors Section:
    This section allows you to select which real-time credit card processor you want to use. You will need to have an account setup with these processors in order to use them. Or there is the “Regular SSL” option that doesn’t use a 3rd party processor, but collects all the information from the customer locally.

    Terms and Conditions Section:
    The terms and conditions are displayed for the customer just before the final checkout is completed. It can be last minute details about the order, or simply the terms you have layed out for the order.

    Check Statistics Section:
    This section give full statistics about the visitors to your website. It gives visitors, page views, by date, and also tells ip and connection information. There is even a graphical representation of the hits to your website.

    Turn E-Commerce Off Section:
    Toggles the E-commerce on your website. You can turn it on and off without loosing any product or sale information, but it isn’t recomened to click this button unless you are serious about turning the e-commerce off so that customers can’t make purchases on your website.

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  • Local Scholarship money, too
    By admin on October 7, 2005 | 19 Comments19 Comments  Comments

    Welcome to the self storage blog, our diary of the self storage industry.

    I pulled this article from the Inside Self Storage magazine. What is your company doing to promote education?

    PhoneSmart Essay Contest

    Scholarship woos bilingual workers

    By Kimberly Hundley

    PhoneSmart Director Tron Jordheim knows he’ll need Spanish-speaking employees to bolster his business in years to come. So will other companies. Rather than wait for Mohammed to come to the mountain, he’s done something better: He’s created a scholarship-essay contest to support bilingual skills in the local workforce.
    This year, PhoneSmart will provide two $500 scholarships to students of higher education in mid-Missouri. Those eligible include high school students living in Boone County, where the company is headquartered, and college students attending schools in the area. Younger applicants are asked to write a comprehensive report on how being a Spanish-English speaker creates career advantages; the second group must write an essay on the challenges and rewards of creating a bilingual society. The deadline is Oct. 31, and contest winners will be announced in December.

    “Missouri is in the position many states were in several years ago,” Jordheim says. “Our Spanish-speaking population is just starting to bloom. We have the choice of resisting this change or embracing it and making the best of it—because we’re not going to stop it. The best thing to do is welcome Spanish speakers into our workforce and view their language skills as a positive, not a negative.”

    Bilingualism particularly affects PhoneSmart because many of its self-storage clients are in areas with significant Spanish-speaking populations. Though statistics indicate 75 percent of U.S. Hispanics are comfortable speaking English, businesses that can speak to them in either language have a tremendous sales advantage, according to Jordheim.

    “The odds of writing a reservation double or triple if you can speak Spanish with someone. It creates immediate rapport,” he says. “Even though the Hispanic population is not yet a major portion of self-storage users, they are moving up as a demographic in the market. They will be storing stuff soon, and lots of it.”
    Learning the Art of Scholarship

    Since this is Jordheim’s first shot at crafting a scholarship program, he isn’t sure what to expect. For his first publicity effort, he mailed an announcement to high schools in the area in May. The timing wasn’t the best—schools were just about to break for the summer and PhoneSmart received no response. Jordheim then attended a conference about statewide population growth at the University of Missouri. Representatives from several local colleges praised his idea and pledged help to promote it.

    In September, another announcement was sent to area colleges and follow-up calls made to high school guidance counselors and financial-aid offices. “We’re also doing a mailing to food and construction businesses, because a large percentage of new immigrants work in those sectors and have kids in school,” Jordheim says. “Our main flier is in English with a Spanish blurb.”

    As of press time, Jordheim’s expectations were modest: “I hope we get a lot of essays, but I’ll be happy if we get 10. It takes time to get the word out about a new scholarship, and our statistical area is small (we probably have a local population of 150,000). But if we get a good response, I’d like to do more next year and give away a lot more scholarships.”

    While the jury is still out on the program’s rate of response, contest jurors are in and ready to go. PhoneSmart has enlisted the help of two employees to review and judge submitted essays: Lucia Darnell and Bolivian-born Alexia Cardona. Jose Garcia, Cardona’s father as well as an assistant professor at University of Missouri-Columbia, is also on the judging panel.
    Double-Edged Benefit
    Jordheim freely admits the scholarship program isn’t completely altruistic. “Five years down the road, we’d like to have more Spanish speakers working for us than we do now. If we can encourage those capable of being fluent in Spanish and English to work on their skills, we’ll have a bigger pool of candidates,” he says. Though he doubts this year’s recipients will become PhoneSmart employees, Jordheim believes the program will increase people’s awareness of the importance of bilingualism and the company’s interest in those skills.

    “The world is a very small place these days,” Jordheim says. “If PhoneSmart can do business with all the Spanish speakers in the United States, we can eventually do business with Spanish speakers throughout the world. The potential for future business is very real.”

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  • Scholarship Money Available !
    By admin on October 6, 2005 | 2 Comments2 Comments  Comments

    ATTENTION:
    SELF STORAGE PROFESSIONALS!

    We are seeking APPLICANTS
    for the Inside Self-Storage Scholarship Program!

    Do you know someone who could use some extra help with college expenses? Time is running out to take advantage of some FREE MONEY FOR SCHOOL.

    Inside Self-Storage is proud to offer its annual Scholarship Program, which provides five $2,000 educational scholarships for deserving individuals. The deadline for this wonderful opportunity is NOVEMBER 1st, so please encourage your employees, customers, co-workers, friends and family to apply!

    Anyone 17 years of age or older who works in the self-storage industry – or is closely related to someone who does – qualifies. Eligible applicants are those planning to attend college or university during either semester in 2006.

    Winners will be selected by Dec. 31 and notified in writing by Jan. 30. They will publicly announced and honored in a ceremony at the
    Inside Self-Storage Conference and Expo
    at the Mandalay Bay Hotel in Las Vegas, Feb. 28-March 3.

    To view a complete list of guidelines and download an application, visit www.insideselfstorage.com/application.
    For more information, e-mail mreed@vpico.com.

    This is great. Make sure you apply for one of your loved ones, Tron

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  • winner!
    By admin on August 19, 2005 | 2 Comments2 Comments  Comments

    Thanks for comning to the self storage blog.

    I am sorry I didn’t put in an entry yesterday. We have been busy fighting the virus worm that has caused some pain and suffering around the country. We hvae stopped or successfully blocked so many viruses and worms that we were very dissapointed when this one “Got us”. I guess we shouldn’t feel so bad. ABC news apparently had to use their old electronic typewriters from 1982 to write the copy for the evening news the other day, because they were fighting the worm. We had some disruptions in our fax servers that caused some delays in notifications. But we should have everything back to normal by the end of the day today or tomorrow morning.

    And we have a winner in our “free registration ” contest for the SSA show next month We picked the winner at random form the entries sent in. The winner is Alan Jones of Stor-n lock Self Storage. Way to go Alan!

    I am sorry you all couldn’t win. But I hope to see you in Las Vegas anyway!

    bye for now.

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  • Gordon Burnam, Hall of Famer
    By admin on August 16, 2005 | 86 Comments86 Comments  Comments

    Thanks for coming to the self storage blog, our diary of self storage.

    One great reason to attend the Thursday morning sessions at the Self Storage Association meeting in a few weeks is to see the first class of Self Storage Hall of Famers. I will be tickled to see Gordon Burnam inaugurated. Gordon Burnam is a big part of how PhoneSmart got started and how I got involved in PhoneSmart. Gordon also has a great story of how he got started in self storage.

    Gordon was a builder who was building houses and apartment complexes in Columbia Missouri. He owned a few apartments and was getting established as an owner/developer. Columbia Missouri is one of those college towns that started growing and developing over a hundred and fifty years ago and has never really slowed down for a minute. Gordon was one of those guys in the right place at the right time with a good plan. He was courageous enough to create some momentum and some luck.

    There was never any time for Gordon to take time off in the summer as it was busy building season, so he used to take a time off in the winter and pack up the kids and head south for nice weather. On one trip to south Texas in maybe 1972 or so, the family hit a patch of rainy weather. The kids were getting fidgety, so Gordon and his wife Mickey loaded the kids in the car and went for a drive. They drove by a row of garage doors and a sign that said “mini-warehouses”. A little alarm went off in the back of Gordon’s mind and he knew he had to check this out. So they pulled in and visited with the site manager. Gordon was intrigued. He asked for a copy of the lease, which the site manager gave him and the family loaded back into the car and continued their vacation.

    When Gordon got home, he was determined to build one of these mini warehouses in Columbia. It sounded like a landlord’s dream: good rental per square foot rates without plumbing. Gordon talked to his banker friends who all told him he was nuts. That probably just encouraged him and he found a way to finance the first project. That project is still renting units and is the location for the home office of the StorageMart companies and PhoneSmart.

    One of Gordon’s banker friends bought into the vision and signed on as a partner. The first of the Burnam storage companies was born. Over the years all kinds of opportunities presented themselves. All of Gordon’s and Mickey’s kids eventually joined Gordon in the business. There were several incarnations of multiple facility portfolios that morphed into other opportunities. Many of you may remember Storage Trust, which was the 4th or 5th largest storage company in the country when it was bought it in the late 90s. That was a Burnam project. The current incarnation is StorageMart with over 50 facilities around the country.

    Although Gordon is no longer active in the day to day management of the business, his influence and legacy is felt throughout the company. He is very deserving of the recognition he will get on September 8th. If you have a chance to visit with him, you should.

    It was with Gordon’s urging that PhoneSmart was created to provide extra rentals to the StorageMart stores and to its other clients. So here we are, poised for the next opportunity. From my standpoint, the next opportunity is coming in the next phone call we field for one of our many clients. Maybe it will be a rental we help create for your store.

    Tomorrow is the last day to enter the contest to win a registration at the SSA show from the self storage blog. Look at yesterday’s submission for details.

    Bye for now,
    Tron

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