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If you were renting a storage unit, would you prefer to get phone calls or text message updates on your rental?
According to a recent survey by Soprano, a staggering 85% of consumers prefer text messages over phone calls or emails. This preference for text makes sense. A text message doesn’t require an immediate response and is usually short and to the point.
Many companies also utilize text messages that only require a one-character response. For example, many of us have received an appointment confirmation via text. “Thanks for scheduling your appointment! Please press 1 to confirm your appointment or 2 to cancel.” You can receive that message and send your response in a matter of seconds.
In 2021, we can do almost anything from our smartphones. So why should self storage be any different?
Simply put, SMS marketing is a marketing strategy that uses text messages to communicate special offers, updates, discounts, and other information to customers. Business owners typically use one of the many popular mass texting services to automate this process. Podium, Twilio, SlickText, and Attentive are a few examples.
In self storage, the potential uses for this type of text message marketing are genuinely endless. Imagine sending your customers an automated text to confirm their storage unit rental, remind them to pay their bill, or send your “abandoned cart” customers a text to remind them to complete their reservation.
The key to making the most of text message marketing is knowing when and how often you should text your customers. There are critical moments in a customer’s journey where a text message might just be all it takes for them to complete their storage unit rental.
As they say in business, “the fortune is in the follow-up.” One of the best moments for a follow-up text is right after your new customer submits a reservation form online. Many self storage facilities require the customer to come into the storage facility to show identification, sign paperwork, complete the rental process, and pick up their keys.
How many times have you had a customer complete an online storage unit reservation only to never show up in person to finish the process? Sending an automated text message to follow up and then remind them to complete their storage unit rental is a no-brainer solution!
There are new technologies and platforms popping up seemingly almost every day. It can be hard to keep up. So why should you, as a self storage facility owner, care about another one? Texting services for business are becoming the norm. Here are our top ten reasons why you should implement SMS marketing in your business’s marketing strategy.1. Text Message Review Request
Reviews make a significant difference to your self storage business. Google takes your review count and the score of your reviews into consideration regarding local rankings on their search engine. Considering that most people are searching for storage units that are close to home, your local search ranking is going to make a big difference!
Instead of hoping customers just choose to get online and do it on their own, send them a text with a link and a reminder!
After all, customers don’t usually think to post a review if they’re happy with the service they receive. It’s entirely possible that you’re missing out on tons of reviews just because you didn’t put the idea in a happy customer’s head.
Many self storage business owners have had to face the dilemma of paying for marketing or not to pay for marketing. To start, paying a service or agency to market your self storage business isn’t cheap.
According to WebFX, a small to midsize business should expect to spend between $2500 and $12,000 per month on marketing and advertising expenses. For a small storage facility, that’s often just not feasible.
So what’s the solution to your small business marketing needs? SMS marketing.
SMS marketing can cost your storage facility as little as $50 to $500 a month. Using a text marketing platform is a very affordable marketing strategy that offers a highly competitive ROI.
In fact, according to Learn Hub, the open rate for SMS marketing messages is 98%, compared to the open rate of the average marketing email, which sits at just 21%.
3. Fully Automated
One of the most significant benefits of mass texting services is automating your marketing strategy fully.
Instead of manually sending a follow-up email to individual customers or leads, mass texting allows you to set up templates and automatically send text messages to your storage customers. These text messages can be triggered by certain events that you set up ahead of time.
Mass texting services are truly a “set it and forget it” type of marketing. It’s also a great way to make sure your leads for new customers don’t slip through the cracks.
4. Texting is Personal
If you’re like most people, you probably hit the “unsubscribe” button several times a day in your email account. Email marketing has become so pervasive that most people don’t feel like there’s anything personal about an email from a brand or business.
Most of us send text messages to our friends and family several times throughout the day. We associate this kind of communication with our friends, and thus even when our storage facility texts us, we feel like we’re texting a friend.
5. No Internet Required
Most digital marketing strategies only reach their intended recipient if the recipient has access to the internet. The beauty of SMS marketing is that it doesn’t require an internet connection to reach the recipient and be effective.
And it’s not just about an internet connection. The advantage of text marketing is that it doesn’t require you to be comfortable with smartphone apps or complex technologies. Texting is simple, and anyone of any age can send and receive a text.
Texting is the common communication preference whether you’re 21 or 81.
6. Reduce Abandoned Cart Customers
People start a transaction online and then abandon their cart for all kinds of reasons. They didn’t want to submit personal information online, there were errors with the checkout process, or they simply got distracted by something and didn’t complete the transaction.
This abandoned cart problem can be very frustrating for self storage business owners. One day you get ten new online storage unit reservations, but then only two of those customers come in to complete their rentals.
The abandoned cart problem is a perfect opportunity to see the value of SMS marketing.
As soon as your customer submits their online reservation form, send them an automated text message with their next steps and saying thanks for their business. Then follow up daily until their storage unit rental process is complete. Voila!
With all of the technologies and services available, knowing where to start when deciding how to market your self storage business can be tricky. Text message marketing is one of the most affordable and versatile forms of marketing that offer a highly competitive return on investment.
For more articles about the Customer Journey, check out:
At StoragePug , we build self storage websites that make it easy for new customers to find you and easy for them to rent from you. With Insights, our self storage marketing platform, operators get the data and digital tools they need to make the get out of their website and their self storage investment.