Free! Do I not know you’re running your holiday home business?   

I do! And that’s exactly why I want you to offer a freebie because it will benefit your holiday home business in the long run.

I’m not talking a free week or even free afternoon tea.  I’m talking a free guide, a free checklist, a free cheat-sheet, a free how-to video series.  In marketing speak this is known as a ‘lead magnet’ but I’m calling it a ‘freebie’.  It’s something that you give away for free, in exchange for an email address.

My freebie is called ‘My Guide To North Yorkshire’s Hidden Gems’.  In it, I share insider info, _my_ recommendations, the less well known places to visit, the local-knowledge things to do that you won’t necessarily find out about on a Google search.  And that’s why it’s downloadable. It’s relevant, informative, useful and saves people time.

I’m not asking them to pay in hard cash for it, but it offers real value to people visiting North Yorkshire, that they’re prepared to give me their email address in exchange for it.

But why offer a free guide at all?

* I build my email list as I collect email addresses to send my monthly newsletter to
* it gets my website and cottage name in front of more people (as it’s printed on each page of the guide)
* it builds the trust factor – sharing my local knowledge shows I’m more than just a bricks and mortar business
* PR – if I’m that helpful and friendly offering a free guide, imagine how helpful I’ll be when you actually stay with me
* not many other holiday lets are offering this, so it sets me apart
* it’s going the extra mile for my guests and potential guests

If you haven’t yet got a freebie, here’s what you need to get started:

📌 Brainstorm and think of a topic your ideal guest would be interested in and one you know well

📌 Set up an account (often free) with an e-newsletter software provider eg Mad Mimi or Mailchimp

📌 Decide on your format – written, a series of short videos, a voice recordings, a Powerpoint talk

📌 Write it.

📌 Source relevant images (ensuring permission to use the images)

📌 Upload the freebie to a specific page on your website

📌 Create a ‘sales page’ on your website, telling potential guests why they should download your freebie, what benefit it will be to them, how it will help them. (On this sales page add a clause explaining that emails will be added to your email list to receive monthly newsletters.)

📌 Add a sign up form (created in your e-newsletter software) to capture name and email address.  And set it up to link to the page where you’ve added your freebie

📌 Write social media posts, including links to your ‘sales page’

📌 Get promoting it regularly across your social media (driving traffic to your website).  Also you can tell local businesses and tourism bodies about it, to help spread the word

Want more reasons why you should offer a freebie in your holiday home business? I suggest you listen in to this:

Having a freebie available to download is an important part of your marketing. It’s something that as an independent holiday home owner you can do right now.

Karen

Header image copyright: studiograndouest / 123RF Stock Photo