Is Vacation Rental Marketing Working ?
So you've been following vacation rental marketing blogs religiously and putting into practice the great advice suggested, but how do you know if your marketing strategy is working?
Conducting experiments is one of the best ways to test what is working excellently and where you can make improvements to marketing your property.
To help you on your quest to vacation rental marketing success, industry expert Matt Landau conducted 9 experiments on his incredibly insightful Vacation Rental Marketing Blog.
Learning what vacationers are looking for is the first and most important step to conducting a successful marketing strategy.
From surveys to A/B testing, we have put together a digestable summary of how Matt conducted his vacation rental marketing experiments, for vacation rental managers to begin utilizing:
Market Research Tools
An excellent tool Matt used for collecting feedback from a complete outsiders point of view is Zipinion. Within one hour, it provides 100 external unbiased opinions. From property images to names, Zipinion can achieve clarity and help vacation rental to managers to effectively make decisions. Through this, it was found:
- 77% agreed that a room looks more enticing with the balcony doors open, not closed
- 74% of people will Google a property after seeing a listing page
- Clicking on a listing can heavily depend on how many reviews the property has
- 67% of people prefer the more likely to click on a listing that has many positive reviews and some negative, rather than a small amount of positive.
Keep On Top of Industry Surveys
There are hundreds of resources out there to help guide your vacation rental marketing efforts. Conducting your own or keeping up-to-date on industry surveys is a great way to find out information about fellow vacation rental managers and the best practices to increase bookings.
The Vacation Rental Marketing Blog is just one of many excellent resources that create vacation rental surveys on a large scale. They provide great findings that would take a considerable amount of time to achieve by yourself, for instance:
- Those that rely solely on portal listing sites have an average occupancy of 54%, in comparison to 61% that also have a website, and 76% that use social media to promote their listing pages and website
- 68% of vacation rental managers that are strong leaders dedicate a fixed time to vacation rental marketing every month.
Google Analytics is a completely free tool that allows you to really delve in deep to booking conversions. It can provide you with detailed statistics on your vacation rental website and help you to identify where improvements are needed. Making small changes to the text on your website can have a massive impact on your bookings.
Matt conducted The Great "Submit Button Experiment where he changed the text of the submit button of an inquiry form on the homepage on a weekly basis:
- The difference in words made a big impression on how many booking inquiries he recieved
- 'Come Visit' was a lot more favourable than 'Contact!'
- Testing different variations and playing around with text on your homepage will help to define the most effective language to use and in turn, increase bookings!
Reach Out to Experts
Sometimes taking high quality photographs of your vacation rental or producing compelling content for your blog may be out of your skill set. Reaching out to someone who is more experienced in those fields will help to shape an understanding of how to improve marketing efforts in those areas.
To test the difference of a high quality property description and a mediocre one, Matt connected with an experienced copywriter who wrote a property description for him. From there he advertised the two descriptions next to each other on Craiglist to see which attracted more attention. The copywriter's description was much more effective, attracting 204 views in comparison to 96.
Reaching out to experts doesn't need to be expensive either, the internet is a plethora for vacation rental marketing go-to guides covering a wide scope of topics; from creating a property description to setting prices for your property.
We hope we have helped to summarize the experiments you can conduct to tell if your vacation rental marketing efforts are working. Please feel free to share these great experiments with others or share your thoughts in the comment box below:
If you are a vacation rental manager looking for a website or channel manager to manage multiple property listing pages, consider using Kigo. You can contact one of our vacation rental software experts at [email protected] or on the phone (Europe) +34 512 702 104 ‧ (Asia) +66 (0) 92 471 8426
Photo Credit: Direct Annuaires Stephan Comelli via Compfight cc