As we get ready to head into the new year, sales at your facility are likely slowing down. You may be using this time to review the year and look for ways you can improve next year. One such area that could use some thought marketing for your self storage facility, or how you can attract your target market to your services.

You probably already know that storage marketing is a crucial part of your business. We think it’s important, too, which is why we’ve written several articles about it here on the storEDGE blog. We’ve written so many over the years that I was curious to know which ones storage operators have found the most helpful.

2016 will be a great year for storage operators to market their facilities in creative and effective ways.

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I pulled all of our blogs related to self storage marketing and looked at their data in Google Analytics. I considered factors like total visitors, unique visitors, bounce rate, and headline score. The results are these ten stellar blogs ranked in order of their popularity. So, if you’re looking to become a better marketer in 2016, one (or more) of these articles is sure to make a big difference in your efforts!

#10: The Pros and Cons of Outsourcing Your Web Marketing Services

Making your storage facility more visible to interested renters is a complicated process. Two major pieces you need are a self storage website design that performs well in search and marketing efforts that reach the right audience at the right time.

The pros and cons of outsourcing your web marketing services

The problem is that most storage operators are well versed in self storage and serving their customers, while the world of web marketing and self storage SEO may be rather foreign. We looked at the pros of outsourcing your web marketing services vs. the pros of doing it yourself and combined our findings into one helpful article so that you can make the decision that works best for your business.

Read this post if:

  • You aren’t 100% sure how you can use content, design, Google local, and search engine optimization to make your website the best it can be.

  • You’re curious what you can do to market your facility in terms of branding, advertising, social media, and link building.

  • You want to maximize your ROI, know exactly where your money’s going, and grab a few storage marketing tips along the way.

Quotable moment

“Let’s say that a web marketing company has 30-40 employees. Each of those employees is specialized in their field and adds expertise to your company’s marketing strategy. They are each dedicated to one part of the process and their time is spent developing that piece of the marketing puzzle. And let’s just assume this service costs $6,000 per month.

“Now let’s assume you hire 2 people to handle all of your marketing needs in-house. But you have to pay them $50,000 each, or around $8,300 a month This is already more expensive than outsourcing but you’ll never match the combined expertise of 30 people. You’d save the money, but the time spent handling your web marketing would probably be better focused on other business aspects.”

#9: 3 Brilliant Advertising Campaigns and What You Can Learn from Them

Advertising and marketing go hand in hand. And, just like marketing, advertising has its own challenges and best practices. It’s easy to approach advertising as the act of making promotional materials for your facility, but it’s about so much more than that.

Three brilliant advertising campaigns and what you can learn from them

Advertising is all about establishing a mutual connection with your customers and reinforcing your branding over a long period of time. You have to be able to stand out against your competition, communicate to leads how your product solves their problem, and tap into what matters most to your target market. Sound like a tall order? This article can help you make sense of it all with some inspiration from some of the best advertising campaigns out there.

Read this post if:

  • You wonder how a storage company’s advertisements can be just as captivating to the consumer as any other industry’s ads.

  • You aren’t sure if your advertising efforts are reaching the decision makers of your target market and you want to learn some effective tips.

  • You want to stand out against the standard ads your competition is making and give your customers an easy way to remember you.

Quotable moment

“So whatever you decide to try out for your next advertising campaign, think beyond the words, images, and medium. Get inspired by Manhattan Mini Storage and know your audience, consider injecting humor, and join the conversation your customers are already having. Take a tip from Old Spice and find your decision makers, show how your product solves a problem, and create content that’s easy to share. Try out Progressive’s approach and understand public perception of your industry, be authentic and honest with your customers, and give customers a face to remember you by.

“But ultimately, try out what you think is best. Dare to experiment (and fail sometimes, so long as you learn from it). Think beyond the visual. Create psychological arguments and make your product a part of your customers’ culture. Then they’ll be more eager to make your product a part of their life.”

#8: The Foolproof Guide to Making Fantastic Promotional Videos

Maybe you’re tired of hearing the same old marketing advice over and over. Your facility has a great website, your print marketing is more effective than ever, and your rankings in search are right where you want them to be. What can you do next? A promotional video might be the answer.

The foolproof guide to making fantastic promotional videos

People are visual creatures. Even as you’re reading this article, there’s a good chance you’re skimming over the words and using the images to guide you through the post. So if you want to better engage your target audience, a video on your website is highly likely to capture their attention and keep them interested from beginning to end.

Read this post if:

  • You want to spread word about your company, provide information to existing tenants and potential customers, increase rapport with your customers, and strengthen your SEO and web presence.

  • You’re eager to learn the best ways to record, edit, and post your video so that you can reap the best benefits.

  • You’d like to see some examples of successful storage facility videos to inspire your own efforts.

Quotable moment

“As with any other piece of content, use appropriate keywords in your title and description. This extends beyond just variations of “self storage” and includes your business’s name, your address, the city you’re located in, and even nearby locations or other relevant details. A video is a great opportunity to milk a little more SEO out of your page. With the major Hummingbird algorithm update, presenting content in various formats is becoming increasingly important, so make as much of the opportunity as you can. For more tips, see this detailed article from one of the SEO industry leaders, Moz.

“Next, it’s time to spread it around. How you go about this will largely depend on the purpose of the video. For example, a customer appreciation video is prime social media fodder, while an advertisement would probably be better placed using a professional online or television media company. People on Facebook and other social media sites love to watch videos, but they don’t want to be advertised to (especially with the amount of ads and other promoted content that continues to take up more and more space on their news feeds).”

#7: 4 Things You Didn’t Know About Web Content

“Content is king,” search engine marketers love to say. And, after all, who can blame them? Content, in all its forms, is an important method for informing people about your brand, signalling to Google your relevance and authority, and sending the message you want to send about your facility.

Four things you didn't know about web content

Content is an important factor in the world of self storage marketing, so of course it comes with a slew of misconceptions. Whether you’re writing the content for your facility yourself or you’re hiring a writer to do it for you, you need to know a few secrets about the world of content marketing. That’s exactly what this article is here for.

Read this post if:

  • You want to know how to optimize your website content for skimmers and word-for-word readers alike.

  • You’ve always been confused about the relationship between content and SEO and are looking for some simple, understandable answers.

  • You’re curious to know which words are more likely to persuade your target audience to rent at your facility.

Quotable moment

“One thing many webmasters seem to forget is that the internet is the perfect place to experiment. There’s no reason to rely on the horrendous mess of conflicting advice that people you’ve never met write on the internet when determining the right content for you niche. You can find out for yourself!

“It’s not hard to use Google Analytics (or some other analytics software) and set up a simple A/B test. Just change one variable – a heading or a picture or a small bit of vocabulary – and find out which one leads to more conversions.”

#6: Hablas Español? How to Market Your Self Storage Brand to Non-English Speakers

Maybe in the midst of marketing your storage facility to your neighborhood, you completely forgot that there’s a large population of ESL speakers in your target market. It’s actually a demographic that many facilities forget to market to, so you can get ahead of the curve by picking up some tips for best reaching this audience.

How to market your self storage brand to non-english speakers

There are ways for finding out if this is a lucrative strategy for your brand. If you find that it is, marketing to ESL speakers can be as small or as large of an endeavor as you want it to be. From hiring a bilingual manager to implementing a foreign language marketing campaign to tracking your progress on original content, this article gives you all the steps you need to tap into a market that you may have previously ignored.

Read this post if:

  • You know for certain that there are many non-English or ESL speakers in your area or you’re curious to find out if there are.

  • You want to acknowledge cultural differences, understand buying patterns, and better understand the ESL demographic of your target market.

  • You’ve marketed to many of the same demographics over and over and aren’t getting the results you’re looking for.

Quotable moment

“When beginning a foreign language marketing campaign, your first thought might be simply to translate your English-language marketing materials (e.g. your website, newsletters, advertisements, etc.) into the target language. This can be an effective – and efficient – tactic, although it’s generally not ideal.

“A word-for-word translation rarely sounds as satisfying in the target language as it does in the source language. Many words and idioms don’t have a literal translation, and attempting to translate them literally obscures the meaning. As Briceno told us, no translation is better than a shoddy translation. Poorly translated materials show that you, as a business, don’t value the target demographic enough to invest in quality translators.”

#5: The Importance of Adding High-Quality Images to Your Website

Just like valuable content can come in form of promotional videos, high-quality images can do wonders to improve your storage facility’s website. Simply swapping out blurry, low-quality photos for pictures that are clean, colorful, and crisp can increase customer traffic, convert more leads, and boost your organic search rankings.

The importance of adding high-quality images to your website

How? High-quality images can lower your bounce rates, resulting in more leads, and increase your rankings, leading to more conversions. They form a link between your customers and your company and they enhance the professional look of your website design.

Read this post if:

  • You’re looking for a powerful way to both improve your search rankings and entice leads to rent with your facility.

  • You’ve heard the term “brand” or “branding” and you aren’t sure what it means or how to approach it.

  • You read our post about title tags and alt tags and you would like more information about alt tags and images for your website.

Quotable moment

“Beyond pleasing the bots as they index your site, images provide you an opportunity to please your human users and decrease your bounce rate. Bounce rate is measured by analyzing the number of users who return to the search results without viewing any further pages on a website. Images engage users to click through your pages, thereby helping to decrease your site’s bounce rate.

“Studies show that, if users are given images to look at, they will remain on a site for a longer period of time. Adding images to your site kills two birds with one stone: Bettering your users’ experience and automatically bettering your ranking by decreasing bounce rate.”

#4: Using Analytics to Measure the Success of Your Self Storage Marketing Campaign

It’s understandable why this blog is our fourth most popular article about marketing. After all, tips for coming up with marketing ideas are a bit more straightforward than understanding the data behind your marketing efforts.

Using analytics to measure the success of a self storage marketing campaign

Data is an absolutely essential part of anything you do for your storage facility online. Without data, you could be spending your money on the wrong strategies or misunderstanding what works best to attract customers to your brand. This article covers topics like tracking numbers, shortened URLs, calls to action, and landing pages in a way that’s easy to understand and act on.

Read this post if:

  • You want to know more about Google Analytics and social media analytics, whether you’re completely new to the concept or you simply want to learn more.

  • Every time you hear terms like “intermediary pages,” “analytics,” or “traffic sources,” you have no concrete understanding of what they mean.

  • You understand the importance of marketing, but you hate spending money on marketing without knowing what’s really working.

Quotable moment

“With this arsenal of statistics and figures at hand, you can learn a lot about the success of your marketing campaign. For example, if your Twitter campaign is accompanied by an increase in web traffic, you might think it was successful. If you then take a look at your referral sources and see your Twitter traffic hasn’t increased, then the campaign was not successful but merely coincided with a spike in traffic. Your money in the future might be better spent elsewhere.”

#3: 5 Self Storage Marketing Blunders to Avoid

The nature of marketing involves its fair share of trial and error. You can’t really find what works for your storage facility without trying out a few different methods, and by using tips from the post above to analyze your efforts, you can evaluate the effectiveness of your experiments.

Five self storage marketing blunders to avoid

As you get into the nitty gritty of your marketing, there are a few common blunders storage operators make that you can avoid. Giving this article a quick read will help you better understand your marketing data, tap into valuable markets, and improve your services.

Read this post if:

  • You notice certain trends in your sales and/or marketing and aren’t sure how you can determine what causes them.

  • You read our post about marketing analytics and are looking for more ways to improve your understanding of facility data.

  • You’ve got a good grasp of the marketing campaigns you want to use for your facility and now you want to think about your strategy on a higher level.

Quotable moment

“Let’s say you start a new marketing campaign in March, and it continues through June. In that time, your leads increase drastically and you rent far more units than you had in the winter and spring. Were those leads the result of an awesome advertisement?

“Possibly. But you have to consider all the factors. Self storage operators almost always experience an influx of new tenants during the summer months. In order to determine whether your advertising campaign was more effective than previous ones, you need to look at past data during the same time frame.”

#2: Selling & Marketing to the Self Storage Consumer: How to Get the Biggest Bang for Your Buck

The process of getting a lead, converting a lead, and keeping a lead can also be called marketing, selling, and retention, respectively. By looking at the entire funnel and thinking about the lifetime of a lead, you can use your big picture perspective to improve your marketing.

Selling nad marketing to the self storage consumer

It’s easy to think of marketing and sales as one general concept, but fragmenting them can help you hone in and perfect each process individually, all while considering how they relate to one another. This article will help you do just that.

Read this post if:

  • Either your marketing or sales skills are strong, while the other isn’t quite on par, and you’re looking to make both of them as strong as they can be.

  • You’re hooked on pay-per-click, YellowPages, or pay per performance marketing and are looking for a lower cost per acquisition.

  • ROI is a crucial part of your decision making and you want to do everything you can to maximize it as much as possible.

Quotable moment

“When you’re at extremely low occupancy, it may be worth your while to start with those more expensive lead generators. While it isn’t always true that these resources will be more effective than the more affordable tactics, they are built to justify the higher price tag.

“Of course, you don’t want to run an indefinite pay per click marketing campaign. Your business’ goal is to move to a point where you’re paying somewhere between $0 and $25 for each move-in. By keeping your eye on that end goal and consistently refining your strategy, your brand will continue to build its reputation and generate the leads you’re after.”

#1: 7 Unique Discount Ideas

This one post has more pageviews than the previous nine articles combined! There could be all sorts of reasons for that, but the one that I think is most likely is this: Marketing can quickly become repetitive and boring, and sometimes all you need is a spark of creativity to revamp your efforts.

Seven unique discount ideas

This post is exactly what it sounds like. It examines the common discounts that storage operators provide and then offers seven slightly unconventional ideas for your facility’s specials and discounts. While offering discounts isn’t always right for your facility (they can hurt your profits if your occupancy is high), they can be a good way to get through a low occupancy slump and increase your storage facility’s value.

Read this post if:

  • You aren’t sure whether or not you should be providing discounts at your storage facility and would like a simple guide to help you figure it out.

  • You’re tired of offering the same specials and want to think of some creative ways to attract new customers to your brand.

  • You think marketing should be about more than promoting your brand and would like to affect your community in a positive way.

Quotable moment

“Events provide a wonderful outlet for building a sense of community while getting meaningful discounts out there. You can always do the standard auctions and facility-wide garage sales, but feel free to get creative. Try teaming up with businesses in town to host a scavenger hunt, talent show, or charity event. Along the way, consider your target audience and how you can reach out to their interests. Hold a raffle, drawing, or even various competitions so that the winners score great deals on a storage unit at your facility.”

Choose a post and become a better marketer

There you have it. These are our ten most popular blogs about marketing. Which one stands out the most to you? Give it a read and think about how you can implement its strategies at your storage facility.

We want 2016 to be your best year yet, including your best year for marketing your brand. Use these articles to get the boost you’ve been looking for, and let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

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