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  • How Did You Hear About Us?
    By admin on June 14, 2006 | 1 Comment1 Comment  Comments

    PhoneSmart call center operator Wendy Lane advises us to pay attention to this question.
    Welcome to the PhoneSmart self storage blog, a diary of the self storage industry.

    When you answer the phone to help someone with storage do you ever think of where your marketing dollars are working the most for you? One little phrase you can use to find out is, “how did you hear about us”? This phrase gives you everything you need to know when deciding where to use your marketing budget. Whether it is the phone book, flyers, newspaper ads or just driving by, you know where your money is working the best. On every call you can track your responses. This is an efficient way to find out just one simple little question. That way when you are deciding to put a new ad out there somewhere you know what is going to work best for your store and it only takes a moment to find out!
    I know it is busy right now and you probably have people on the phone and also in the store to get storage but if you take a few moments to find out where they heard about you from you are saving your company money in the future so it does not go on an ad that never reaches anyone! That can also mean more money for you!

    PhoneSmart Your Offsite Sales Solution
    Total Quality Assurance Services Your all in one Quality Assuarance Portal
    Self Storage Search Engine Finding Storage Faster

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  • What a busy day!
    By admin on April 17, 2006 | No Comments  Comments
    What a busy day! It seems like, along with the flowers and trees, our business is bursting at the seam. Of course that’s what we want, but along with the new projects comes more work.
    My newest project has been this blog. My coworker and I have just been put in charge of it. We hadn’t realized how much work had to go into the details of maintaining a quality blog. We’ve been thinking of a few things that could spice up the blog, so stay tuned…
    Springtime brings a kind of excitement with it. I can’t wait until the rivers get warm enough to float down and all the flowers are sprinkling the ground with color. Along with springtime comes an insatiable need to get that deep cleaning done. You know what I mean- you pull out the fridge and mop behind it, flip over the sofa cushions and perhaps throw out some old stuff.
    Although in my sister’s case, she does not throw out anything; she could be labeled as a pack rat. So far it works out for her because she’s only 22 years old, but I bet in a few years her “stuff” will be overwhelming her living space.
    You may find yourself with more clutter than you prefer. But if you aren’t ready to part with your Barbie Doll Dream House or, in my husband’s case, your Transformer collection self storage may be just what you were looking for. But don’t hesitate…the rest of the neighborhood is thinking the same thing and you’ll want to reserve your space today!

    Self Storage Education Learn about the Self Storage Industry

    Property Management Blog

    Total Quality Assurance Services

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  • Keep closing
    By admin on August 2, 2005 | No Comments  Comments

    Welcome to our self storage blog, where we look at issues impacting self storage.

    I saw the press releases yesterday on an effort to take over Shurgard. This is an interesting development. We’ll see how it pans out.

    In the mean time, the best way to keep your properties cooking is to keep closing your leads.

    Here are a few numbers you can cook with.

    We had a few clients who were only closing 15% of the total leads and reservations we were sending them because they did not have a follow-up system in place.

    Clients with follow-up systems are closing 35-45% of total leads and reservations. There is still 10 points left of improvement. How to reach it?

    We have been doing follow-up calls on non-reservation leads for a few of our clients who follow up on their reservations themselves. This allows the store staff to concentrate on the “hottest” of prospects and allows us to try follow up calls at all times of the day. These clients are renting to better than 80-85% of reservations and we are turning up to 35% of non-reservation leads into rentals. So a good follow up routine on just non reservation leads is beating all leads and reservations total.

    Many end users are leaving tons of money on the table by doing ineffective follow up or by letting leads and reservations go stale.

    So shouldn’t these people learn to close better? It would cost something to sell them or teach them a closing system.

    It might be a stretch to get people to spend money to learn how to close more leads and reservations. But you usually have a few people who say, “Hey I’d spend 10,000 to make 100,000 as many times as I can raise 10,000.” The rest will say, “10,000? What are you nuts?”

    I’m not saying it would take $10,000 to establish a closing system. It was just an example.

    I’m one of the people that would be looking for money to spend, if it would turn into more. My wife and I did a yard sale last weekend. We have small kids that are always outgrowing their clothes. And we collect a lot of stuff we never use every year. So we spent about $100.00 promoting it and brought in just shy of $600.00. So I’m annoyed that we are out of stuff, because I’d like to turn $100 into $600 every weekend!

    bye for now, Tron

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  • Keep Following Up
    By admin on April 5, 2005 | 94 Comments94 Comments  Comments

    If we are to take a sales approach to self storage, then we need to take a sales approach to self storage. Why do you think you see ad after ad for new cars? Because the car companies are following up with you. We all would like a new vehicle. Some of us already know which model we’d like. Even if we just bought the new car we wanted, we are already thinking about the next car we might want. So the car makers have to keep their newest models in front of us so we remember that we want a new car, so that we remember which model we want and that we keep thinking about it. Of course they are all hoping that we will finally decide to buy their model, even if we have been dreaming of a different one. What does any of this have to do with self storage?

    You are leaving a lot of business on the table. Just because someone can’t commit to storing right now, doesn’t mean they won’t store with you sooner or later. You have to keep following up with them. If you get a reservation from your PhoneSmart off-site sales rep confirmed with a $10.00 credit card pre-payment, it is easy to follow up. You assume the person wants to rent so you keep following up until they do rent. But don’t be quick to write off the people who aren’t ready to give a credit card right now. We have been studying best practices in self storage follow-up. We have been doing follow-up ourselves and we have been watching our clients to see what works for them. Here is what I can tell you. You can rent to 30% of your Hot Leads. Those are people who called or visited, but made no credit card confirmed reservation. They left only a name and number. What I am telling you is that consistent and persistent follow-up will give you almost 1 of out three of these people as a customer. Those are great percentages.

    You may have to talk to someone or their voicemail six times before they decide to rent or before they tell you to stop calling. Fine then, call and talk to them or their voicemail six times. Just make sure each time you can plant a little seed that will help to continue to build the need and the urgency to store with you. Mentioning specials and stressing limited availability are always good ways to plant new seeds. I can also tell you that it doesn’t matter if you talk to the person in person or talk to their voicemails. Either way your follow-up call can have impact and cause that person to come to your store or to call you back to make a reservation.

    These people have already identified a need to store and have identified an interest in your storage space. Don’t let them fade away or go somewhere else to rent.

    Bye for now, Tron

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