If you haven’t already, it’s time to discover #StorChat, the industry’s first and only Twitter-based discussion for operators to share ideas and inspiration. #StorChat has been steadily gaining momentum since its start in September 2011, with more industry professionals tuning in each week to benefit from and contribute to the rewarding weekly chat. To whet your appetite, check out this brief review of recent chats and the best lessons learned:
PR For Self-Storage
Getting the word out about your storage facility is a unique challenge for managers. While traditional PR methods and networking channels are in a state of flux, StorChatters agree the coverage is invaluable. In addition to increasing your facility’s relevance in the community, PR coverage is a boon for your website’s SEO. Co-host Kenny Pratt, Twitter handle @SellingStorage, conjectured on the state of public relations: “PR used to be all about getting in the paper or on TV. Now links are maybe more important.”
The conversation centered around the many viable PR avenues popping up all over the Internet. Local blogs and websites were agreed to be the most potent method for spreading your facility’s brand. Co-host @SpareFoot said a simple Google search for blogs in your city is a great place to start building a list of contacts for PR. @CalvineStorage shared that when their facility live-tweets storage auctions, they benefit from a nice short-term boost in online coverage.
Hosting Community Events
Some StorChatters were interested in hosting an event at their facility, but had no idea where to begin. The overall message to beginners looking to host events was: Start simple, and work your way up. Those more experienced at hosting events had plenty of suggestions, from charity events to movie night. @ULockNanaimo regaled a recent charity event that generated substantial coverage for her facility with marginal PR effort.
Maintaining a Facility Newsletter
As @CochraneStorage pointed out, a storage facility might not be eventful enough for a monthly newsletter. However, participants agreed that a quarterly newsletter would allow for enough content to be relevant and shareable for their readers. Users had plenty of ideas for newsletter features, including storage/moving tips, local interest stories, and a spotlight on a favorite tenant. @HutchinsonA advised that a newsletter should have a designated purpose other than just fostering brand value and loyalty: “If you produce a quarterly newsletter, you should have a goal in mind: Increase referrals, solicit reviews, etc.”
Get in on the conversation every Wednesday at 3:00 CST by searching the hashtag #StorChat from your Twitter account, or sign in via TweetChat for an intuitive chat-friendly layout. See you there!