Car wash

Good morning everyone – it snowing here in Caraquet this morning on “black friday weekend” and hard to think about self storage with the smell of the 30 pies GP are cooking!   So we will keep it short today.  December is the month of planning.  After the car storage rush the res of the month is slow as people prepare for Christmas.

Time to se next years marketing budget.  Don’t forget to include specific line items for landscape improvements and for social media – the two most important  items for next year!

Now is the time to update your marketing calender.  It take planning for great marketing.  We often forget many things need to be coredinated and organized well in advance of many marketing events.

Take for example a car wash by the local high school senior class or one of the school clubs.  First you have to contact the school to find out the club/class advisors and then you have to contact them.   Then they have to think about it and discuss it with the kids.  Then dates have to be chosen.  And for a great event you need a month to market the event – on your company facebook site – on the kids facebook site – at your self storage with signs – at school with signs and of course the text message barrage by the kids to friends, uncles, aunts and all contacts the morning of the event.

So add contact school for car wash to January’s marketing calender!

In the next couple of weeks I will update my marketing calender and put it on line to give you a head start.

To Success!








Walking & Landscaping

Sarasota Marketing Analogies – Walking & Gardens

GP & I walked 8 miles this morning over the bridge to downtown and back.  We do this walk once a week.  We also walk along the beach 5 miles once a week.  To round out walking 6 days a week we typically walk 3.5 mile on our “circle walk”.

Self storage marketing is like exercise.  Both need to be done consistently for the best rewards. Both are work but they make you feel better every day and keep you (or your business healthy). Often changing things up, in either case, provides better results.   In order to be consistent I need help and encouragement.

For my walks I enjoy using my Nike app which tells me how far I have walked, how fast, how many calories I burned and keeps track of all my walks for a cumulative total.  I set goals and the app helps me keep track.  I also walk with my wife GP which is fun.

I do the same for my self storage marketing.  I set similar goals – how much time I will spend each day working on marketing projects and what specifics I want to achieve (rentals & additional income) each month and year. I also set up a monthly marketing outline for each month at the beginning of each year to keep me on tract.

We are always admiring the miles beautiful landscape as we walk in Sarasota.  Workers and homeowners are always planting, pruning and taking care of the gardens.  Last week started they yearly removal of the old straggly annuals and planting of new annuals.  The best gardens are a combination of perennials and annuals.  Just like gardening self storage marketing is always on going and is a combination of the strong existing marketing campaigns (perennials) and new marketing campaigns (annuals)

I recommend the manager should be spending at least 6 hours on new marketing ideas and projects every week.  If your goal as the owner is to rent up your facility faster and at higher rates you should spend 10 plus hours to ?? on marketing every week.  Remember it is the owners job to get the prospects in the door and the managers job to make them happy and rent.

Walking over the bridge to downtown

Dying of thirst QR Barcode to the rescue

Dying of thirst QC Barcode to the rescue

We were on our way to the outlet stores north of Sarasota and GP was thirsty and without her water.  When I saw the Walgreens billboard – case of 24 waters for just $2.99 I pulled in. When I got to the water special at the front door the signed informed me I needed to be a Walgreen member or pay $1.00 more.  I was frustrated until I saw a QR barcode on the sign that said scan me and become a member.  I scanned the bar code and after giving the typical details I had the Walgreen app on my I phone.  I went to the registered and she scanned my phone and poof I saved a $1.

For several years I carried a CVS card on my key chain to get regular discounts.  When I got home I down loaded the CVS App and discarded the old pealing cvs card.

GP was shopping at Van Heusen store.  When I was letting her know she looked beautiful as she was trying on clothes I noticed a sign in the dressing room to scan the QR code to get an instant $5.00 coupon.  I scanned it and wal la I saved $5.

Hey I have resisted all this tech stuff as much as the next 50 year old but the time has come.  Either join them or pay more and work harder – thank you I would rather not do either.

You need a bar code for your self storage.  Its simple and free.  Several on line sites will provide you a QR barcode that when scanned will bring them to a web page you gave them.  It can be your web page home page or internet special page, your facebook page or a special landing page.  It only takes up the space of a thumb on your business card or advertising and opens a whole new door.

Look at the adds in any magazine or even the self storage adds by the large operators and they all have QR barcodes.  It is so simple and easy, don’t get left behind.

Want more facebook likes for your site – post the QR code in your storage brochure and remind everyone to  scan it to check out your facebook site.  How about putting a QR code on your front door so when people come after hours they can scan it and learn about your facility from your web site.

I was reading the ministorage messenger magazine and had an ad and a barcode to scan.  They will provided you with a barcode for your front door so you can rent when you are closed.  It makes your ads and front door signage a rental Kiosk.  It connects them to your available units instantly through a unique mobile app.

The possibilities are endless.  Get a QR Barcode today.

Try out It simple and free.  Just enter the web site name & instantly you will have a QR bar code.


Neighborhood Wal Mart Neighborhood Market – David vs. Golith


We arrived in Sarasota after being out of town for 6 months and to our amazement there it was – the Wal Mart Neighborhood Market (grocery store). It replaced of an old dilapidated defunct grocery store that has been closed for several years.  It was a big surprise because this was the first I ever heard of or seen a wal mart that was only a grocery store.  The location was also unusual for a wal mart for a couple of reasons.  First there is Super Wal Mart located about 7 miles south and another one 7 miles north and dozens of grocery stores in between.  Also this location was not your typical shopping plaza location but rather a run down section of town.

Curiosity got the best of us, we had to try it out.  In wal mart tradition it was large and had great prices.  But the similarity to the neighborhood grocery store ended there.  Just like the similarity between your self storage and the large self storage operators.  Wal mart only had about 80% of what we typically purchase.  They did not have fresh fish, large wine selection, local produce, name brand products we are familiar with, etc.

They will never have the continuity of service or experienced service of my local grocery store.  Year after year we recognize many of the employees at our local grocery store and often have a conversation with them.

They will never have the service of the local grocery store.  We bought some bad frozen salmon at wal mart.  When I told them about it they would not do any thing without the salmon.  So I shopped at wal mart one time and lost 10 bucks and had to scramble for dinner one night.  I have shopped at my local grocery store many years and I can only remember one time I had a bad product – A bag of potatoes had some rotten potatoes.  When I told the cashier (who did not even know me) she gave us one free bag and a cash refund for the original cost of the potatoes no questions asked.  You won’t find that at wal mart.

For many reasons we will continue shopping at our local grocery store and not wal mart.  Now of course when the 4 kids come to visit and all they want is bland food, cereal and junk food I may send them out to wal mart.

Unless you want to compete solely upon price (against the likes of wal mart) make sure you are a neighborhood self storage and not a wal mart neighborhood self storage.  It is not as hard as it might initially sound.  Most peoples self storage decision factors  have price six or seventh on the list.  Take care of the first things on list and you can beat wal mart!

Convenient (easy access, parking, multiple payment options, “main street” location)

Easy to rent.  (quick, no security deposit, take credit cards)


Great service, helpful experienced staff, pleasant experience, retail office and visually pleasing site.

Clean, dry, well lit, up to date facility


The Competition can not focus locally like you can!