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10 Tried-and-True Tips for Becoming a Master of Self-Storage Sales and Customer Service

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8. Share a chuckle. There’s a rule in sales called the “Chuckle Rule.” It says your chances of doing business with someone increases exponentially with every laugh you share with them. The limit is about three to four chuckles; that's when you cross the line from being fun and entertaining to annoying. So share a laugh or two with everyone with whom you do business. Don’t worry if you don’t feel like you can tell a joke. Most situations have some humor in them if you look for it.

9. Ask for the sale. If you don’t ask for the sale, you’ll often lose it. People wait for you to conclude the negotiation or the conversation. Offer a resolution such as, “Why don’t we get the paperwork done so you can move in today?” If you don’t ask for the business, people may think you don’t want or need it, and they’ll go elsewhere.

10. Ask for a referral. People don’t know you have a referral program unless you tell them. Let them know how they and their friends can get a little something extra just for referring new customers to you. Don’t let a transaction go by without asking for a referral or reminding customers about your referral incentives.

Training and Tracking

You can check your progress by making a simple list of these 10 times, and then putting a check mark next to each whenever you use that tip. You might use all 10 in one conversation, so you should see your sheet fill up fast. Keep this up for a solid week. It will make you very aware of how often you’re using these techniques, and you’ll intentionally use them more often. That will force you to get better at using them and allow you to see some positive results.

If you’re using this tip list to help train staff, be careful not to work on too many at once or it will be overwhelming. You might start the training by asking people to keep track of how often they’re using these strategies already. You might be surprised to see some of them are already good at a few of them while completely ignoring others.

These 10 tips are tried and true and apply universally to all selling and customer-service situations. Set out to become the master sales and service. Use every opportunity to improve and use these techniques for optimal results. Good luck and good selling.

Tron Jordheim is the director of PhoneSmart, an off-site sales force serving self-storage owners for more than 10 years. For more information, visit

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