We recently attended the Self Storage Association’s Spring Conference & Trade Show. This is where people in the industry have the opportunity to learn from the best in the business, network with peers and meet with top suppliers. Best of all this all took place in the historic and famous city of New Orleans, in the French Quarter.
In keeping with the theme of the city, the melodious sounds of a jazz band greeted attendees on opening day. The conference had lectures and seminars that allowed people to learn about up-to-date information on economic and industry trends, successful operational strategies, and handling key issues of the financial world as they pertain to self-storage.
One other benefit of the conference is the opportunity to learn about other groups or organizations in attendance. One group that we learned about was Charity Storage. Charity Storage is a promotional outreach program that works with self-storage tenants and their community.
Lance Watkins created the concept of Charity Storage. He was also one of the creators of the reality show hit Storage Wars. Watkins knew that while the show was popular, and the auctioning concept was a boost to the self-storage industry. However, as this is a reality show, some aspects could create a negative perception of the storage industry. He then developed the way to give back that would benefit local, national, and international charities.
The concept of quite an ingenious one. First, a storage facility would designate a Charity Storage Unit. Then, tenants and community members would then donate items to the designated unit. An auction would subsequently take place, and whichever charities the local storage facility would support receive the proceeds.
We look forward to attending the next conference and look forward to meeting everyone there.