June 21, 2018

Self Storage Consumer Trends

Marketing Effectively to Different Generations:

As facility owners, you often come across businesses promoting your “solution” for increased profit and ROI. In reality, the answer to maximizing your facility’s profit relies on getting optimal marketing content to a relevant audience. We live in a rapidly transforming society where there are vast differences between generations. Considering the extreme differences from Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials, how do businesses market effectively to different generations?

Say you live in Boulder, Colorado and you desire to reach young adults attending Colorado University. Or perhaps your facility is in Orlando, Florida and you are hoping your marketing content reaches the “baby boomers” in your area since many in this generation are downsizing homes and in need of storage options. Is this highly-specific targeting even a possibility? Google’s pay-per-click ads and paid social media ads are your biggest friend when it comes to targeting specific population demographics. However, the targeting option is just the beginning of online advertising uses. Below we discuss effective tools and messages that will help you market to different generations

The overall online trend…

It’s no surprise that the number of internet users has soared over the past years and continues to increase each and every day. In fact, the number of internet users is predicted to grow about 3 million users each year. Online presence is beyond important. Nowadays, the greater importances revolve around the messages and online strategies you make use of to get more potential tenants. The deeper and more important questions lie within the strategies we use online to market our businesses to specific groups of people.

Choose Your Audience

As a storage facility owner, you’re aware of the demographic in the facility’s local area. If not, get on top of that research immediately as it is essential to effective marketing. Get comfortable with your community. Ask your customers questions, put out online surveys, do some online research, etc. Determine what generation you are mainly targeting and read below to develop the most effective digital marketing campaigns.

Reaching the Baby Boomers!

Born between 1946 and 1964…

What exactly is the “digital landscape” when it comes to baby boomers? According to an article by Internet Marketing Inc, baby boomers spend the most money in nearly every product and service industry but are only targeted by 5-10% of marketers. There is big opportunity here. Baby boomers make up a large percentage of internet users, with 85% using the internet daily.
Although you cannot single out one advertising method for each generation, pay-per-click ads are your best bet for targeting baby boomers. Search engines, rather than social media, are where they tend to be most comfortable. Depending on your keywords used for your PPC ad, baby boomers in your area could run across your ad if they are searching for storage solutions, organization tips, storage advice, etc. Many baby boomers are also downsizing homes, meaning they’ll probably be in need of storage facilities. The word “downsizing” may be helpful to have in your ad.

PPC Ad Benefits

    • Choose your own ad budget
    • Target population by age, location, language, and device
    • Measurable: ability to determine how many clicks turn into conversions
    • Customizable: update your ad to make it more effective and efficient
    • Immediate website traffic: get high quality traffic to your page before your website has reached the top of search results.

Reaching Gen. X!

Born between 1965 and 1980…

Gen X, for the most part, is quite versatile when it comes to digital abilities. Generally speaking, Generation X was the first to grow up with two working parents and to be highly individualistic. Most remember a time without computers and began using them around their teen years, giving them plenty of time to get fully immersed in the internet. A study from New York Times displays Generation X spends more time than younger generations (like Millennials) on social media. Adding on to that, 93% of this generation are consistent internet users. Currently, Generation X is laying back and kicking their feet up with kids moving out of the house for college. That’s right, many are either moving homes or redesigning rooms to be guest bedrooms and home offices.

It appears that Gen X is yet another great storage facility market, although they may not compete with the baby boomer and millennial storage demand. This population could be reached in many places online. Our suggestion is to market to Gen. X via both pay-per-click ads and paid social media campaigns.

Paid Social Media Ad Benefits:

    • Offered through Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram (Gen X is king of Facebook and LinkedIn)
    • Target people based on age, interests, location, etc.
    • Reach a broader audience
    • Track your ad’s involvement (likes, shares, views, clicks, etc.)

Reaching Millennials!

Born between 1981 and 2000…

As of late, Millennials are significant contributors to the storage industry. This comes from their desire to move constantly, travel more, and fit into the new “minimalist” trend. Millennials also tend to avoid buying houses and paying a mortgage. The number of renters in this generation is unreal. Millennials change jobs
more often than other generations, leading to an increased moving rate. More moves? Sounds like great news for storage facilities! The minimalism trend has also taken over and results in many millennials wanting to declutter their homes. Right now is an optimal time to be pumping out anti-clutter blogs and putting “minimalist” terminology in your digital marketing and advertising.

Millennials are without-a-doubt comfortable with computers, the internet, social media, and all things “digital.” This is another generation that could be easily reached via paid social media and pay-per-click ads. However, it’s important to focus on the message you are putting on your ads and making use of the correct social media platforms. Messages that will resonate with Millennials are “world changes.” Millennials like to know that the product or service you provide serves the greater good of the community. We suggest changing your ad to incorporate something with “minimalism” or “making the world a better place.” Use the most common social media platforms for your paid social media ads aiming to reach millennials.

Most Common Millennial Social Media Platforms

  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • Pinterest
  • SnapChat
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn

Click here if you want to learn more about our social media services. The most important part of effective marketing is reaching the right people and sending them a message that resonates. Being aware of your audience’s generation is a superb way to begin brainstorming your facility’s specific marketing strategies.