Wichita Falls Institutes Crime-Free Program for Self-Storage

The success of the Crime Free Multi-Housing program in Wichita Falls, Texas, has the police department thinking the initiative could be good for self-storage facilities, too. The Tuesday discovery of a methamphetamine lab in a unit at Adams Self Storage brought the topic to the fore. The WFPD will try to implement the program for self-storage as soon as possible, according to Sgt. Joe Snyder.
Since October, Wichita Falls police have been training apartment-complex managers in ways to be more aware of and reduce illegal or unsafe activity on their property.
As part of the program, police will periodically drive through a self-storage property, and dogs will be brought in to sniff the site for drugs. The program outlines qualifications for participating facilities, such as keeping certain gate hours, using a special type of lock, and having a lock-check program in place. Donna Adams, owner of Adams Self Storage, said she was excited to get started.
After storage facilities, Snyder hopes to see the program spread to shopping centers, family residences and hotel/motel establishments.
Source: Times Record News, Crime Free program builds on success

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Storage Investment Management Names New Ops VP

Storage Investment Management Inc. (SIMI) has promoted Mike Knapp to vice president of operations. Knapp, who has been with the company since 1988, previously served as the senior sales manager for SIMI facilities in Connecticut and New York.
SIMI owns, operates, fee manages and consults for self-storage properties primarily throughout the Northeast and mid-Atlantic states.

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U-Store-It Shares Involuntarily Sold

A financial institution took possession of and sold 234,500 of U-Store-It Trust common stock that had been pledged to a not-for-profit organization by U-Store-It CEO Dean Jernigan. Jernigan has been involved with the organization for 11 years.
"I am very disappointed to have had U-Store-It shares involuntarily sold,” Jernigan said. “I have been committed to a not-for-profit organization for many years and have devoted substantial personal financial resources in support of its mission. I consider the circumstances that led to the involuntary sale of shares to be very unfortunate. The sales in no way reflect my view of the company's financial position and the execution of the company's business plan. I believe in the future performance and potential of U-Store-It. My confidence in the company remains strong, and I look forward to increasing my ownership position in U-Store-It in the months and years ahead."

U-Store-It Trust is a self-administered and self-managed real estate investment trust. The company provides self-storage in all 50 states through its 384 company-owned facilities and the U-Store-It Network, which consists of approximately 263 third-party locations.

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Self-Storage Poll Shows Tenant Needs to Be Temporary

A recent poll conducted on EasyStorageSearch.com, a directory of self-storage facilities nationwide, showed that the most common reason for people to seek out storage is a temporary need for more space, not a long-term requirement. Of 100 respondents, 43 said they were looking for short-term storage; only 15 had a more permanent need. Sixteen were making a local move, another 16 were moving cross-country. The remaining 10 indicated another, unspecified reason for seeking self-storage.
EasyStorageSearch.com, owned by Jason Kay, is an online resource for those looking to find storage or move. The website includes a directory of self-storage and moving companies, information on cleaning and truck rental, real estate links, and a time-saving service that sets up all of the user's utilities at once. In addition, the site provides a rate-quote service, allowing users to get up to four self-storage quotes by completing a simple form.

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Tenant Caught Storing Meth at Wichita Falls Self-Storage Facility

A tenant was caught storing a large amount of liquid methamphetamine and anhydrous ammonia in his unit at Adam's Self Storage in Wichita Falls, Texas. According to police, the tenant failed to pay rent. When the facility owner couldn’t reach him, he cut the lock on the unit and found the drugs. Police are attempting to find the suspect.
Source: KAUZ Wichita Falls, Illegal Drugs Found In Self Storage Unit

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Photoluminescent Energy-Efficient Lighting

American Permalight Inc., a manufacturer of photoluminescent exit signs and exit-path markings, has introduced its photoluminescent, glow-in-the-dark safety products. The new power 150/22 product line includes easy-to-use spray paint, durable floor decals, glowing warning chain, alerting warning tapes, and energy-efficient exit signs that are non-electrical, non-radioactive, non-toxic and offer a 25-year life expectancy. These products light up with 35 hours of measurable luminance in the dark, compared to ASTM Standard-compliant markings with only eight hours. Brighter luminance and increased visibility help speed up evacuation during an emergency.

The photoluminescent exit signs can directly contribute toward securing points toward Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) credits. A new product addition is the silver-colored, brushed-aluminum, framed UL924 exit sign. Lettering comes in red or green.

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Health Care Reform Coming

House Democrats unveiled a plan for health care reform Tuesday. The plan promises more affordable health care plans for all Americans, including government-funded ones. In addition, it looks like employers with payrolls over $250,000 must provide employees with health coverage or contribute up to 8 percent of their payroll on their behalf.

The plan, dubbed “America’s Affordable Health Choices Act,” also calls for limits on out-of-pocket spending and a ban on excluding coverage for pre-existing conditions.

Although I'm 100 percent in favor of health care reform, I have a ton of questions and concerns about how it will work and who will pay for it. Plus, it seems like Congress is rushing this process, with hopes of passing a bill by the end of the year. Something as major as health care reform should take more than a few months to iron out, if you ask me.

I posted a question on Self-Storage Talk a few weeks asking forum members if employers should be required by law to pay for some or all of their employees’ health care. A lively debate ensued. Today I posted another thread, asking forum members what should health care reform look like? Who should pay for it and who should be covered? Post a comment below or join the discussion on Self-Storage Talk.

Self Storage of York, Neb., Adds Units and RV Storage

Self Storage of York in York, Neb., has expanded to include more than 400 units spread over three locations. The addition includes 100 units in three buildings, constructed by Dan’s Construction of York, and a fenced outdoor storage area for vehicles and RVs.
The business was started 27 years ago with only 29 units by owner John Strong. The new units have approximately 12 percent more capacity, he said. The ceilings are a foot taller and insulated.

Source: York News-Times, Self storage of York expands, adds outdoor storage

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Janus International Acquires Epic Doors

Janus International Corp., a manufacturer of steel roll-up doors and hallway systems for the self-storage industry, has acquired Epic Doors LP of Anaheim, Calif. The Janus headquarters will remain in Temple, Ga., while the Epic Anaheim location will become a product-distribution center for the West Coast. Jeff Higashi, president of Epic, will assume become president, western division, self-storage.
“Acquiring Epic Doors allows us greater accessibility and serviceability to all areas of the national self-storage market,” said Janus President David Curtis. “We are pleased to bring Epic’s industry knowledge and innovation into the Janus line of products.”

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Six Must-Haves for Successful Social-Media Marketing

Every day it's harder for small-business owners and advertisers to keep pace with all the social-media platforms on the Internet. It started with the personal profile phenomenon, which quickly evolved into video-sharing profiles. Then the floodgates opened, and now Internet users have more than 400 social-media platforms to consider.

Most marketers understand the value of setting up a campaign on these free platforms. However, with so many options and limited time, business owners must have a strategic and targeted approach. Developing a formula will help them create successful social-media advertising.
The Social-Media Advertising Formula

There are six essential platforms business owners must use to really harness the potential of social advertising. Each platform plays a specific role, and the combination of all six is what will take your campaign to the next level.

There is a secret ingredient at play here as well: The formula calls for a touch of optimization on each platform. Optimization allows your social media to work with your website and marketing campaign to dominate the first page of search-engine results. Essentially, this formula will make you the only choice as far as the searcher and Google are concerned.
Social Advertising Element No. 1: LinkedIn

A popular business-profile site, LinkedIn ranks high in search engines and is a great platform for sending event updates to business associates. When optimizing your LinkedIn profile, select one core keyword (or search term you would like to be found under). Use it frequently without sacrificing consumer experience, and watch your profile skyrocket in the search engines.
Social Advertising Element No. 2: Facebook

As a closed community, Facebook doesn’t rank in the search engines and makes the best choice if you want to have a personal profile online. However, optimizing your Facebook profile with your business keyword can make it an invaluable marketing effort.

Optimize your profile for one keyword and become the “go-to” expert in your industry for the more than 22 million Facebook users. Also, include some personal touches, but beware of putting too much personal information online.
Social Advertising Element No. 3: MySpace

As an open community, MySpace ranks great in the search engines and, more important, allows businesses to have fully developed profiles, including designed backgrounds. In addition to optimizing your profile with a keyword, you can search for your target audience in MySpace friends and create an amazing outreach network.
Social Advertising Element No. 4: YouTube

The main video-sharing platform, YouTube, is one of the best forums available to create a viral marketing campaign. From publishing client video testimonials to creating social proof of your abilities, YouTube videos are a great way to get other site owners to link to your website. Each new video is a new opportunity to optimize for a different keyword. For each video, be sure to include your keyword in the title and at least once in the description section.
Social Advertising Element No. 5: Blog

If you only have the time or desire to create one social-media platform, a blog should be at the top of your list. Blogs give users a few distinctive advantages over the other platforms that make them absolutely invaluable in the world of Internet marketing.

First, search engines love blogs. They have plenty of content and are easy for the spiders to crawl and categorize online. Second, consumers love blogs. They aren't hard sales, but instead are a mix of marketing and education online shoppers trust. Third, every blog is a new opportunity for you to go after a new keyword. Whether you want to dominate a search page with one particular keyword or just have a presence under a different keyword, a blog is a free and easy way to get you there.

As with a YouTube video, every blog is a new keyword opportunity. Use a keyword tool and select your keyword before writing. Then, include your keyword in the title and throughout the content. Remember, never sacrifice consumer experience. Also, be advised a keyword repeated too many times will show up as spam in the search engines.
Social Advertising Element No. 6: Twitter

The newest, hottest rage, Twitter is a microblog that limits posts to 140 characters. Although you'll typically hear the most skepticism about Twitter, it can be an amazing tool for your business. Twitter plugins allow you to update your profile and literally push it out to your other platforms, such as Facebook.

Additionally, Twitter posts rank in the search engines. Select one keyword to include in all your Twitter posts. Also, personalize your Twitter background for a totally unique and branded look and feel.

With the combination of these six social advertising platforms, your online campaign is sure to be a success!
Heather Lutze is the CEO of The Findability Group, formerly Lutze Consulting, a search-engine marketing firm that works with companies to attain maximum Internet exposure. A nationally recognized speaker, Lutze is the author of The FindAbility Formula: The Simple and Non-Technical Approach to Search Engine Marketing. For more information, visit www.findabilitygroup.com.

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