Providing an amazing guest experience is no longer enough to boost your occupancy rate. Now, to attract guests and have your calendar filled for months ahead, you need to set up and follow an Airbnb marketing strategy.
However, according to Search Engine Journal, 50% of small and medium businesses have no marketing strategy in place to reach customers. A further 25% are unsure how to grow their company.
So, how do you craft an effective Airbnb marketing strategy? Read on to discover the best marketing practices that you can use for your short-term rental business to beat the competition and take the lead.
To reach the widest audience possible, it’s necessary to market your rental properties to attract potential guests. Your Airbnb marketing strategy is the direction you take to bring your business in front of your potential guests and turn them into bookers. This is a plan of action for how and where you will promote your vacation rental which can include online and offline marketing pursuits. It’s an essential part of a solid rental management strategy, and shouldn’t be overlooked ever!
Although marketing offline can help to raise your booking rate, in today’s world, the majority of exchanges happen online. Digital marketing is therefore crucial for your success as a host. Overlooking it is a huge risk that could result in your business being overshadowed by competitors who do have marketing strategies in place.
In addition to this, you need to be strategic when it comes to the type of digital marketing you want to utilize. Your efforts don’t just belong anywhere, after all. You don’t want to spend time on digital marketing techniques that don’t produce the results you’re looking for! So, let’s explore the strategies that have proven to be effective by many hosts and property managers.
Differentiating your Airbnb business from the competition in a crowded marketplace starts with your brand. An established brand is the cornerstone of effective Airbnb marketing as this helps build trust and loyalty in the long run.
Having your own brand for your vacation rental business also makes it easier for your guests to remember your property. They will find you faster when they are ready to book with you again.
To establish your brand, come up with a name for your business and create a logo. Use your brand name and logo on all your social media channels to streamline your Airbnb digital marketing strategy.
According to the latest data, 52% of travelers look for recommendations on social media when planning a trip. Surprisingly, 42% of posts on Facebook are related to travel, which makes Facebook the perfect place to promote your vacation rental business.
To use Facebook in your Airbnb marketing strategy, start by creating a Facebook business page for your properties. Link the created posts on your new page back to your listings on the vacation rental platforms.
In addition to posting about your short-term rentals, you should use your Facebook business page to share useful content for travelers. This can include tips and recommendations on the top destinations in your area, things to do or landmarks to see.
Finally, you can go for Facebook advertising. You can set up paid ad campaigns to raise brand awareness, boost engagement and attract more followers around the world. Facebook will tell you directly on your business page how much engagement a paid ad campaign could bring you and the cost of boosting your post.
Although Facebook can deliver stellar results, Instagram is where the action is right now. It can especially come in handy if you want to reach a younger audience. Instagram is used by more than 500 million people every day. If you want to reach millennials or Gen Z travelers, Instagram is where you will find them.
Moreover, it is a highly visual platform that is ideal for sharing engaging and relevant photos and videos. This is the perfect platform for showcasing your rentals along with the experience travelers can get if they book with you.
It is a good idea to strive to make your business profile look professional and appealing. Thus, you should learn how to use smartphone apps to edit and enhance your photos (Snapseed, Lightroom, VSCO, Afterlight, etc.).
By using an app, you will be able to create great content for your Instagram account yourself and save a fair amount of money. But don’t go overboard with photo editing, by no means do you want to give false expectations to your prospective guests.
Take the time to experiment with different content formats available on the platform. Currently, it offers posts, stories, Highlights, Reels, and iGTV videos. You can utilize each of them in different ways:
Posts are a great way to share one key focal point relating to your property like a standout feature or amenity. Keep your posts simple, and don’t try to cram too much information about your entire property into a single post. Instead, encourage the user to click on other content offerings on your page (such as stories and reels) to learn more.
Stories are content pieces such as photos or videos that are displayed on the user’s profile for 24 hours. To save them, you can add the stories to your Highlights collection. By arranging your stories in Highlights, you create a collection of stories that will remain permanently on your profile, and they can be rewatched at any time.
You can use Stories to shoot a virtual tour of your property or record new developments that go on, such as renovations or installations. You can also record nearby attractions and fun things to do in the area, and then group these stories by topic within your Highlights.
Reels can be used in a similar way to Stories, to track developments that go on, or focus on a unique selling point of your rental property. Does your rental offer stellar views or boast a jacuzzi? Capture it in a Reel that will entice viewers into wanting to know more or making a reservation!
Currently, this format allows for maximum reach, as Instagram pushes Reels into recommendations where users can find them.
iGTV videos are longer videos that you can use to create more comprehensive recordings of your rental and its surroundings.
A great way to generate interest in your vacation rental is to create a video promoting it. A video allows viewers to see and experience your property in a way that photos just can’t provide.
You can use your video to market the key features and attractions of your property, as well as nearby landmarks and places of interest. Make sure to focus the majority of your video on your vacation rental home, however, as it’s the real reason why people are tuning in.
Some tips for creating a standout video include filming a virtual tour of your property both inside and outside. You can also use a drone camera to capture an aerial view of your rental property.
YouTube is not only the most popular video site but also the second largest search engine on the internet behind Google. YouTube has 1.9 billion global users and the consumption of video content by its users is growing.
Creating a YouTube channel is an excellent way to help personalize your brand. Your YouTube marketing strategy should focus on creating videos that feature your properties. Try to create engaging content that helps travelers to get to know your area better. For example, make videos about the top attractions your area offers, and what makes it a must-see place to visit.
Your video content needs to provide real value to travelers. They will appreciate insider tips and recommendations from a person who is extremely familiar with the area.
Videos with titles such as “Top 5 Beaches to Explore” or “Top 10 Things to Do in (Your City)” have the best chances to become popular among your audience. The more popular your content is, the higher it will also rank in the YouTube search results.
Your Airbnb marketing strategy for YouTube should also focus on building your subscribers. Make sure to cross-promote your Youtube channel on other networks to grow your subscriber base.
Collaborating with popular influencers is an effective Airbnb digital marketing strategy. There are many travel bloggers on Instagram or YouTube who can help you gain exposure for your business.
However, a partnership with an influencer only brings results if you do the following first:
You should know your audience inside and out and understand the influencer’s audience to ensure that the influencer is a good match. Take into account the age of the influencer’s followers and their potential interests.
You need to decide in advance what aspects of your vacation rental business you want to promote. And, more importantly, how you will measure the success of your ad campaign.
What will the influencer receive in return for promoting your business? What are the minimum conditions the influencer must fulfill to be compensated for their service? How will you stop your Airbnb marketing campaign if the collaboration doesn’t go as planned? Make sure this is all in writing with a contract.
Finding influencers will likely be a time-consuming process. Make sure to plan carefully for the best results.
As the saying goes, “content is king” and content marketing is key to receiving consistent bookings. Content marketing is a marketing strategy based on creating and sharing relevant content. The aim is to attract and retain an audience that will drive leads and, ultimately, conversions (customers). In this case, conversions would be an initial or repeat guest.
A solid means of content marketing is establishing and running your own blog if you have a direct booking website. Creating content for your blog that is interesting and relevant will resonate with your audience, who may then become subscribers and customers.
A blog optimized for search engines can also help to generate new traffic and leads. The greater the number of SEO-optimized posts on your blog, the more likely it will attract new visitors who might be interested in booking with you.
Local partnerships can provide a unique value for your vacation rental business. Collaborations with local restaurants, amusement parks, or equipment rental companies are something that the majority of your competitors won’t take advantage of. Your partners can also help to spread the word about your vacation rental business in the local community.
Use local partnerships to create special offers and discounts for your guests. This will establish mutually profitable joint ventures that local businesses can benefit from as well. Your guests will appreciate the fact that booking with you can help them save money throughout their stay with local special offers.
Getting ahead of the competition requires a creative approach. By going the extra mile to provide real value to your audience, you can attract more bookings and solidify your standing as a top Airbnb host.
Start promoting your short-term rental property by enhancing your Airbnb listing. Read our guide to unlock the full potential of your listing to secure more bookings and boost your revenue.
While Airbnb marketing is an essential part of business growth, you can only go so far without the right tools on your side for property management. Vacation rental software, like iGMS, ensures your business runs optimally by streamlining daily operations. This frees up to 70% of your time, allowing you to focus on other important tasks like marketing and business scaling. Some of the routine host operations iGMS can run on autopilot for you include:
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