By Kevin Bledsoe
Most self-storage owners and managers have sat down at one point or another over the last year to discuss ways to improve traffic counts, increase revenue, gain occupancy, reduce discounting and create awareness for their facilities. Whether you represent one storage facility, a portfolio of 20, or you work for a national company, these are common issues you're working hard to manage.
Two years ago, my company was offered the chance to manage a new self-storage facility with all the bells and whistles. Included in the property was a UPS store franchise. At the time, we had limited knowledge of The UPS Store operations, but we had all used a local franchise to ship a package from time to time. We were intrigued by the opportunity and ready to learn how this business model worked with our primary business. Perhaps you'll find it's an add-on service that could be of benefit to your self-storage operation as well.
During the first six months of operating The UPS Store, we were thankful to acquire staff who understood how to run the franchise. In return, they were happy to have our knowledge on running a successful self-storage property. As we began the learning process, we noticed we were enjoying some unique benefits from the partnership. Our storage property was benefiting from a globally recognized brand, traffic counts were much higher than a traditional storage facility, revenue opportunities were limitless, and marketing efforts became much easier.
UPS is one of the most highly recognized brands in the entire world, and adding its shield to a self-storage facility creates instant public awareness. The traffic count at a UPS store franchise is three times that of the average self-storage property. The UPS Store offers a variety of different profit centers the general public needs on a daily basis.
Marketing became very easy because this facility benefits from UPS national and regional marketing campaigns. Customized marketing pieces are at our fingertips, and promoting a global brand makes recognition in the community effortless. At one time or another, most people will need the services offered through The UPS Store. It’s hard to make that statement about a self-storage facility.
Understanding the Operation
Due to the benefits we were enjoying from our operation of The UPS Store, we decided to learn more about operating a franchise. Thankfully, the people at UPS headquarters are extremely helpful and open to making each of their locations a success. We worked with them to arrange training programs for our company. We also held meetings to discuss our business model and developed a positive working relationship for future growth.