This family-operated and customer-focused self-storage facility has exceeded expectations on all levels. Stash-It Self Storage owners and operators, Emily and Alex, have created a modern, sleek and secure premises in the small north Hamilton town of Horotiu.

With Emily’s family running two storage facilities in the Bay of Plenty, creating their own storage facility was the obvious choice when the couple were looking at business opportunities after returning to New Zealand following travel through Central and South America.

The dynamic duo located a site in Northgate Business Park in Horotiu and, after designing and building a bespoke storage facility, opened Stash-It Self Storage Hamilton in November 2022.

The facility currently has 142 storage units and an additional 35 outdoor storage spaces on a large 6,952 square metre site.

Safety and security is paramount. The business boasts a 24-hour monitoring system, CCTV cameras, and electric perimeter fencing.

“Our point of difference is the customer service we provide, in that we’re a family owned and operated New Zealand business. We pride ourselves in going above and beyond,” says Emily.

This is evident when you walk into the office and are greeted by Alex or Emily’s beaming smile behind the front desk. Not only does this customer-centric approach display a personal touch and Kiwi hospitality, but the couple’s genuine connection with customers has been pivotal to the facility’s success.

With their first storage building nearing capacity, Stash-It needed to expand its customer base to fund plans for a second storage building. Emily applied for Regional Business Partner funding to undergo marketing training with the aim of increasing brand awareness and helping drive sales.

Initially she worked with Lift55 to develop a comprehensive marketing strategy and learn about search engine optimisation (SEO). This focused on social media content creation and advertising, learning about Google search rating, key words, Google ads and Google Business profile; and optimising their website.

“Our website now appears on the first page when people search ‘storage Hamilton’. We also come up in our geographic catchment when people search for storage.

“For Google ads we’ve learnt what key words to use, how much to invest each month and how to ensure we get a return on our investment. We’re also learning how to monitor our marketing investment and effort better,” says Emily.

Last year, Stash-It received additional funding for digital marketing coaching through Ingot. The coaching sessions taught Emily how to monitor Stash-It’s marketing investment and to understand where their marketing money is best spent.

“Ingot has been great in helping us build our own capability in terms of marketing optimisation and monitoring.

“As a small business, learning how to do this ourselves and not have to contract the work out is quicker and more cost-effective,” she adds.

It’s all go at Stash-It. They’re currently constructing a second building of storage units with an additional third stage planned a bit further down the track.

“Our biggest challenge is that we’re a small player against large Australian owned corporates with plenty of marketing spend. What people don’t realise is that a lot of these larger storage companies have regular planned price increases, whereas we aim not to do that.

“Our goal is to create a business that has strong values and ethics, so customers are getting a good product and feel like they’re being looked after.”

Find out if your business is eligible for Regional Business Partner funding.