Last week IVR Tech attended the Self Storage Association’s 2015 Spring Conference & Trade Show. Below is an account of the experiences & main takeaways of Wey Wey Wong, our CRO.

Each year the National Self Storage Association (SSA) holds two major annual conferences. This spring, the event was held in Nation’s Capital, from March 11-13. We had the opportunity to attend the conference to support two of our partners on our recent technology integration.

SSA has done a fantastic job of gathering many of the key suppliers in the industry to make it a resourceful event for the attendees, which are primarily self-storage enterprises, owners, and vendors. The self-storage industry has become bigger and more competitive each year. In fact, since the first model self-storage facility opened in the 1960s, the industry has grown exponentially.

According to the SSA, there are over 2.3 billion square feet of self-storage spaces in the United States. This proves that, more than ever, Americans need more rental space to maintain their on-the-go and active lifestyles.

With thousands of new units going up every year, competition has increased substantially. While consumers enjoy the ability to find the facility that best meets their needs, self-storage companies face increased competition.

As such, self-storage companies, large or small, across America must regularly look for new ways to grow their businesses. Businesses that keep up with the latest technology and marketing tools give themselves an important leg up on the competition.

Fortunately, new technologies have created a significant increase in both the number and the type of marketing opportunities available to self-storage companies. Companies like Find Local Storage, SiteLink and, of course, IVR Tech have developed advanced and robust solutions that help these businesses with lead generation.

FLS provides resources to help their business to increase online presence, create and shape their SEO strategy, bring in good leads and help them track and attribute reservations back to the marketing efforts that work.

SiteLink, an industry leader in Point-of-Sale (POS) systems for the self-storage industry, on the other hand, provides business owners with smart management tools that help them manage all of their premise operational needs. As a leading IVR and call tracking solution provider, we have also helped our share of self-storage enterprises track their inbound leads calls and measure their ROIs more effectively.

Recently, the three of us teamed up to create a closed revenue model for the self-storage industry, for the first time, at the POS level! When we say closed revenue, we mean that each inbound call (or lead) can be tracked in real-time by the local POS system. Calls can be attributed back to a specific media campaign.

This integration brings value to the industry because it gives self-storage owners the ability to track every lead, making it possible for businesses to market themselves more effectively in their competitive vertical.

At the SSA 2015 Spring Conference & Trade Show, we chatted with many companies that shared their struggles with marketing, operations and even in collections. Rest assured – there are several affordable solutions available to help ease your business pains.

For example, IVR Tech’s product pay by phone can be used to reduce outstanding collections. Pay by phone allows your business to collect tenant payments over the phone, 24/7, without live agent assistance.

The process begins by sending an outbound phone call to each of your delinquent tenants, reminding them of their past-due balance. By pressing one button on their phone, the tenant can be transferred to an application that allows them to pay by phone or pay by text, according to their individual preference. This allows your customer to take immediate action toward paying their past due balance without requiring your team to make a dozen phone calls a day.

Many businesses have experienced immediate results with pay by phone, an existing tool that we can provide to help you stay ahead of the competition and also to become savvier operationally.

We heard a lot of wonderful stories in which self-storage business owners described similar issues. Continuing to discuss with business owners will help us to continue our efforts in getting affordable and effective solutions out into your marketplace.