Social Media in the Digital Age: Why It’s Worth Every Self-Storage Operator’s Time
By Chuck G
Do you remember back in the day, before the Internet, when a full-page advertisement in the Yellow Pages brought in new self-storage customers and almost guaranteed you an edge over the competition. Fast-forward to present day as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram developed into a roadside billboard for your business. For better or worse, social platforms continue to grow daily, and your self-storage business is either relevant or a dinosaur.
In an article in “Time” magazine on the average across all genders and age groups, Americans check their phones 47 times a day. Collectively as a country, we check our smartphones up to eight million times per day, every single day. According to NBC News, we check our Facebook page 14 times a day. Twitter usage statistics show we send 350,000 tweets per minute, and people post 1.5 times a day on Instagram, notes “Fast Company,” a monthly business magazine.
Not posting on social media correlates with a drop of followers, while a continued ripple of posts boosts growth. In layman’s terms, if you don’t engage in social media channels, your storage business loses visibility in the influx of chatter on the Internet. If you’re part of a huge franchise, the brand name alone will likely draw in new customers. However, if you’re a single-site proprietor, you should consider how social media posts can help promote your business.
The keyword here is “post.” If your social accounts are inactive, how will people find you? Remember, we use our smartphones to search for eateries, movies and, yes, even self-storage facilities. We check Yelp for reviews. We look at Facebook business pages and scroll through Twitter for coupons or discounts.
A question that may arise is which social platform should you use to brand your business? A good place to start is the channel that has the most members. As of last month, Facebook had 1.7 billion monthly active users, making it the juggernaut of all social sites. It’s also easy to set up a business page on this platform, which makes it ideal for those new to social media.
The next question you may ask is how to get people to follow you. First, begin with your regular customers as they can help build your brand. Write posts about discounts for students or active military personnel. Post a contest in which the winner receives a free month’s rent. Share photos and videos of your facility. A drone video that offers an aerial view of your complex is a fun way to showcase it. Photos of the interior corridors or a video walk-through will garner many views. Also, you can buy ads on Facebook and Twitter to generate interest in your local area. Each day you should post, engage in chatter and repost.
Make yourself visible and current through photos and videos, which are the most commonly shared posts throughout all social media platforms. The question is, if you don’t talk in today’s language, which is primarily a “post” in social channels, how do you expect to grow as a business? Remember, we check our smartphones 47 times a day. You become relevant through your daily posts. Love it or hate it, social media is the method of communication in the 21st century.
Chuck G is the content developer and social media manager for iBid4Storage, an online auction-services company serving North America. For more information, call 855.424.3669; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org ; visit www.ibid4storage.com.
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