How Surrey Storage Started
In June of 2009, I was able to rent-to-own a 5-acre piece of property in Surrey, B.C., Canada. The property had existing commercial buildings when I assumed it, and 3 acres of useable flat land that was empty. Immediately I saw the potential to turn the 2 acres into RV storage and the remaining acre into truck parking.
We began with five RV tenants. Then we launched a marketing program with very little money. Here’s how we did it.
First, I read Purple Cow by marketer Seth Godin. The idea was if you drove down the road and saw a purple cow in a field would you notice it? So I created my own “purple cow” by making four massive 4-by-8 signs that read: RV/Truck Parking Storage with the phone number printed prominently. The signs were put out on four major highways.
Then we contacted every storage facility within 80 kms and sent them a flyer, offering their tenants who needed RV, boat or truck storage the first month if they signed a six-month rental. We also contacted every RV dealer, park and repair center within 80 kilometers to let them know about us.
An RV client told me about a database in which I could market to all truck companies in our area. We e-mailed that database with our offer for truck parking.
By December 2010, we had 100 RV tenants and filled the entire acre with parked trucks. We have not yet developed a website, don’t have printed business cards. Instead, we’ve focused on targeted marketing and word of mouth.
In the area where we’re located we have a high density of aging baby boomers, and a shortage of RV storage. Our initial success has encouraged us to expand this year.