How often do you hear a new vacation rental property owner asking where they can cut cost due to the already demanding property start-up costs of renovations, amenities, and rental necessities?
More often than not, in any business or industry, especially vacation rentals, the expenses get cut from the growth budget… AKA marketing and sales.
And we understand why:
A decade ago with traditional marketing, marketing expenses were a sure fire way to put a nice dent in your pocket. Spending anywhere from 500 dollars to five figures to get your message out to the world that you’re opening your doors for business, and with a small budget, you could really only get that message out once.
Traditional marketing ranged from billboards, newspaper ads, media promotion, door to door selling… and it came with a hefty price tag for the campaign to only last a few weeks, perhaps even days, (or even seconds if we are talking about media promotion).
Luckily, the days of paying thousands for expiring advertisements are over.
Fast forward to present times and think about the 3.2 billion people who are online every day. Every second businesses are advertising to millions on a budget close to zero, and scaling their businesses in fractions of the time compared to what people could do with traditional marketing.
So how does new age style of marketing work and where can you save some money?
Here is how you can market your vacation rental to attract and convert high-quality sales leads on a budget close to zero.
Start blogging on your website:
I have quite a few website developer friends. You know, the smart tech guys who flawlessly code beautiful websites. The other day I asked these friends what the most important part of a website was, expecting to get a good laugh while watching them argue about what latest code, tags, or platform, are the best for promoting and optimizing a business.
Well, was I wrong.
They all agreed a blog is the most important aspect to any businesses website and now age marketing efforts.
Time and time again blogs are proving to be the number one source for website traffic, new leads, and higher conversions. But how can 500-1000 words on a page be the reason for higher revenue?
Hosting an authentic, interesting, original, blog on your website is basically like having a sales team that sells for you while you sleep. You are building rapport with the customer with your blog, creating relationships, positioning yourself as a leader in the industry, and serving your existing and potential customers when you’re not even behind the screen working.
The relationship building aspect of a blog is key, but what might be even more important is the technical backend work that goes into creating a blog. We’re talking website tags, keywords, and the ever so famous SEO, which you can learn more about here.
Social media that is.
Okay, so now you have your blog set up on your website and you have been creating consistent content that is informational, educational, interesting and adds value to your industry’s online space. It’s time to take it one step further.
The power and potential of social media is unlimited, given the fact you have the capabilities of reaching 3.2 billion people online.
When you’re first starting out and don’t have a huge budget, stay away from the paid social media advertisements to promote your original content, so you can authentically see how your content is resonating with your audience, drawing in an organic crowd of high paying customers.
Once you have a small organic following that is receptive to your content, now you can crank up the marketing spend and start reaching the masses!
JZ Vacation Rentals Tip: Pinterest is an amazing platform for sharing blog content! We get it, this is where your mother goes to find new 4th of July, red white and blue casserole recipes (or is that just us). Pinterest is a value-added content platform for people to share educational content. Pinterest has an amazing capability of boosting website traffic quicker than any paid for advertisements.
Embrace email marketing:
Your social media is now set up and you are posting your new content quicker than your family can post horrible photos of you on Facebook from 2013. We are on the right path.
Here’s the thing about social media though, just like fashion, tech, and diet trends, social media trends come and go as well. From AOL online chat, MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, and now Pinterest, the only thing you can expect in the future is a new social media platform to be the next big rave here in a few years.
So you need to find a consistent.
Email is a safe bet when it comes to being your consistent marketing initiative, so building an email list from the very beginning is critical.
Email marketing is probably the most effective long term marketing tool you can adapt.
One study shows the 99% of users check their email every single day, and 59% of customers say that email marketing influences their purchase decision, all while businesses that use an email marketing strategy see a 760% increase in revenue.
And guess what? Email marketing is close to free.
When first starting out and your email list is small, you can use a regular email platform to be marketing to your customers, taking the time to send individual canned emails. For when your business and email list start to grow, you simply only have to invest a few dollars every month into a basic email marketing system. A few of our favorites are:
- Mail Chimp
- Constant Contact
- Convert Kit
Partner with your favorite local businesses:
Now that you’re collecting emails from all over the world, let’s bring that energy back to your local community.
Partnering with local businesses is a fantastic way to create meaningful relationships with your community that benefits both of you. Try getting in touch with restaurants, bars, coffee shops, and activity centers to see how you can both benefit from partnering from one another.
You have the potential of getting in front of an already established businesses audience, providing freebies to your guests (which builds an excellent relationship and raving reviews), and being the go-to vacation rental local businesses will promote when asked by a customer.
Starting a vacation rental business in the digital age opens you up to unlimited opportunity worldwide, and being able to do most of your marketing for free just with the investment of a chunk of time, in the beginning, can take a massive weight off your shoulders.
Learn more about our vacation rental marketing efforts that are done for you here at JZ Vacation Rentals by clicking here.