Do not underestimate the power of word-of-mouth. Customers trust other customers. If someone receives a recommendation for your self-storage facility, either during informal conversation with a friend or through reading an online review, they’re much more likely to choose your business over the competition. Create a positive experience for existing tenants, and you’ll get your foot in the door with future storage searchers without lifting a finger or spending a dime.
These tips don’t require innovative thinking. In fact, most of them were probably your grade school classroom rules. But we all need reminders every now and then. Applying these five action steps to your self-storage business will improve your customer service:
1. Be optimistic. The best self-storage facility managers and staff don’t view their career as a 9-to-5 job spent renting out cubes. The way they see it, this career offers exciting opportunities to provide a helpful service and interact with a variety of interesting people encountering life transitions. Be one of those managers, because optimism is contagious— when you wear a smile on your face, tenants will too.
2. The little things count. As someone who lives in an unfriendly city environment nine months out of the year, let me tell you– acts of hospitality can make someone’s day. This can be as simple as opening the door for new clients or greeting existing tenants by name and even asking how their kids are.
3. Don’t just listen— understand. Take interest in your customers and put yourself in their shoes. If they’re renting self-storage, they may be experiencing a stressful time in their lives. Make them feel comfortable and be as helpful as possible. Stay open to questions and address all concerns– whether they are related to self-storage or not. You’ll make lasting connections and walk away with some good stories to boot.
4. Be flexible. Stay a little past close or come in early if a customer needs you to. Stay on top of followup calls and emails to ensure every tenant’s needs are met. Putting in that extra effort will get you noticed by both your customers and your bosses.
5. Get organized. Smooth behind-the-scenes operations allow you to focus more time and energy on customer service. Keep your facility clean and your paperwork filed. Make it quick and easy for tenants sign leases and gain access to their units. Take interest in the professional development of your staff, so the whole team performs like a well-oiled machine.