As part of StorTrack’s monthly Q&A sessions, we interview leaders in self-storage to provide us with industry insights. This month’s Q&A interviewee is William Warren Group’s Todd Buese. Jeff Brink chats with Todd about the importance of market intelligence and competitor data.
This month StorTrack’s Jeff Brink chats with Todd Buese from William Warren Group
StorTrack: “Tell us a little about your company…”
Todd: “William Warren Group is a privately held, entrepreneurial self-storage development, acquisitions and management company based in Santa Monica, California. We currently have over 120 assets under management generating over $100M in annual revenue.
StorTrack: “How important is market intelligence and competitive data to your company and how it operates?”
Todd: “Market intelligence and competitive data are of utmost important for us in terms of new site selection and operational performance. Data is key for us to deliver sophisticated processes and competitive advantage in the markets we operate in.”
StorTrack: “How do you use data to help you make decisions on an ongoing basis?”
Todd: “We use data to inform both strategic and operational decisions. For example, market intelligence on number of existing competitor facilities and available self-storage square feet per capita provides us with actionable insight on the best locations to develop or acquire a self-storage facility in a new market. From an operational perspective, having real time data on competitor pricing and internal sales conversion rates provides actionable insight on when you should be increasing or decreasing pricing to drive revenue growth.”
StorTrack: “Does your company use any software or systems to make pricing decisions, or is it done by people?”
Todd: “We have created our own proprietary pricing system and while the system can run automatically we still chose to have pricing managers make the final pricing decision.”
StorTrack: “What kind of changes have you seen in the markets you operate in over the past few years?”
Todd: “We have seen more competition from both traditional self-storage and new full service self-storage concepts.”
StorTrack: “Ok, last question.. what do you see as key changes coming to our industry in the next few years..?”
Todd: “I think with the institutional capital that’s come into self-storage over the past few years, we will see additional changes in the form of technological sophistication and possibly the business model shifting to more automation.”