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As a self-storage operator, getting and keeping customers is probably what keeps you up at night. If you want to keep your facility full and your tenants happy, you need to understand how your customer makes decisions. You need to put yourself in their shoes.
Category: Marketing & Operations
Focus: Owners and Managers
Aired: March 18, 2021
If you don't have time to watch the whole Session, here are some of our favorite parts:
We asked our experts: What’s something extra special that you do to stand out to potential customers?
"We hire people who are amazing. We hire the right people for each facility that connect well with our customers. The amazing people we hire are the ones who are doing the extra special things for every customer they interact with." - Magen Smith
The days of "build it and they will come" storage are done. As the industry grow more competitive and more used, tenants want and expect the kind of ease, customer support, and consideration that they experience in other industries - from finding you, to renting from you, to moving in to your facility, each step of their process and each interaction should be the best it can be.
There's not a "one-size-fits-all" approach, so every facility needs to map it's own "customer journey." Look for your facility online, call the number, drive up, try and navigate your units. Are there hiccups or headaches? Would someone who knows nothing about self storage be able to navigate? Understanding your customer lets you improve your processes, and when you do, getting and keeping happy customers will only get easier and easier.
Gabfocus Sessions are virtual workshops for self storage owners, managers, and operators. Brought to you by the team behind Gabfest: StoragePug and Affordable Storage Guys Management.
Each session features hand-picked industry pros who will dive deep into relevant topics surrounding our industry, share best practices, and explore trends in the market. It's our hope that these sessions help you navigate your self storage business better during these uncertain times.
Want to learn more about self storage? Join us on select Thursdays for Gabfocus.
Our panelists will be happy to answer any questions you have. We hope you enjoyed this Gabfest Session. Talk soon!
“Once your operation is in place, you can become more dynamic with your pricing, but that requires data. You need some method of being able to record the data that you need to know whether your price is in the right place - whether you need to move it up or start giving some concessions.” - Warren Lieberman
“I never want to downplay to what someone else is doing. I'm better than they are, then I'm going to be worth a higher price. That's what value is. If you go out to a restaurant and get really good service, would you go back? Yes! What if it was pricier? You'd still go back because you got better service and a better product.” - Jim Mooney
"It's good to be informed on your competition. I don't want to ignore them, but I don't want to respond too strongly to them either." - Warren Lieberman
"We did a survey of 10,000 facilities on their pricing. We found out that two-thirds of those operators didn't change the price of a single unit of the course of a month." - Warren Lieberman
“Rate increases and value pricing are the number one ways to grow your revenue.” - Jim Mooney
"Tenants in more convenient units tend to be less price sensitive." - Warren Lieberman
"The size of the unit is only one aspect of what people are willing to pay for." - Warren Lieberman
We asked our panelists: What’s the biggest hurdle to introducing value pricing to my facility?
““Manager buy-in is going to be the biggest hurdle to overcome. ” - Jim Mooney
“Embracing the concepts and believing that this can really work. If you don't, you're going to find all sorts of reasons not to do it. After that, the next biggest hurdle is just ranking the units. You don't want to do it alone. Divide it amongst your team, and get help.” - Warren Lieberman
Traditional pricing for storage units has centered around size. A smaller unit costs less than a bigger unit. Right? In this Session, we learn how pricing can be dynamic and really depends on what matters most to a customer. Borrowing insights from other industries, Warren and Jim discuss how significant convenience and availability can be when pricing your units, as well as a whole host of other features and amenities. In short, the value of your units isn't static. Introducing dynamic value pricing to your facility, can not only help you get more out of your units, but it lets your customers prioritize and choose the qualities about your units that matter to them most.
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