You’ve invested not only in the purchase of your holiday home but in the time and effort to get it guest-ready.

You’ve set up a website and your social media accounts.  Time to open your doors, sit back and wait for that constant stream of holiday guests to rent your property.

But the reality isn’t like that is it?

Crickey, what do you need to do now? You’re not a marketing guru and you didn’t think that you’d need to be. Fear not. You don’t!

Here are 4 marketing tips to transform your holiday rental business.  Marketing tips that will make a huge difference to your marketing success and that all holiday home owners can and should implement, today!

Stop marketing to the masses

Say you have a 2 bed property that sleeps 4; therefore any family of 4 or couple who want to holiday in your area would be ideal for you?  So you’re going to market to those all people? Do you really have the resources to do that?

You cannot marketing to everyone. You cannot appeal to everyone and you will not be a good fit for everyone. That might be because of your location in a village and some people want remote. It might be because your property is a luxury/special place and is (quite rightly) priced accordingly, yet some of these people want budget accommodation. Do you see what I mean?  You need to niche and be specific as to which target group you are appealing to.

When you try to appeal to everyone, all that happens is your marketing message gets lost and you end up talking to no-one in particular. No-one resonates with what you’re offering.   Instead start to work out which guests you want to attract. What are they looking for in a holiday cottage and in a holiday? How can your property meet their needs exactly. Then write your marketing messages to appeal to these people. These people who are your ideal guest.

Sell the benefits not the features

So often on websites and on listings I see a lists of features. Come and stay with us we have a dishwasher, a washing machine, a separate lounge, wifi, 2 bedrooms…….

Great, but so do many other holiday homes. This isn’t selling your uniqueness or making you stand out.

Yes guests need to know the finer detail for example if you provide a hairdryer and to double check you have a dishwasher. But you need to draw them in first with what benefits a stay with you would deliver.  You need to sell the benefits.  Take the feature of having a separate lounge. The benefit of this is that the Mr J can watch tv in one room while Mrs J relaxes in the lounge, in front of the fire, to read a book, undisturbed.

Be seen

Be seen in Google searches. Know which key words and key word phrases you want to be found out and add one of these uniquely to each page and blog post.  Be specific and targetted. If you have a WordPress website use a plugin called Yoast to help you optimise each page and post.  Also include keywords in your social media bios and about us pages. It all helps.

Photographs sell- both professional shots to use on your website and also snaps. Whenever you’re at your holiday rental on in the area snap away. This provides interesting and personal content for social media. Also share behind the scenes shots.  Ask guests for any of their images – what better way than to get your message across about what there is to do in your area and how to enjoy time in your holiday rental, than from other guests. Share all these images on social media.

To be seen on social media you need to show up regularly.  You need to put social media time into your diary each week to both write new content and to share others’ and to interact and comment. This is how you get more eyes on your holiday home.

It’s not about you!

Booking a holiday with you is as much about your area as it is about you.  No matter how wonderful your holiday home is, how many it sleeps, what features it has, what benefits it offers, how strong your marketing messages are; if guests aren’t wanting to holiday in that area then they won’t book with you.

It’s not your job to convince them to come to eg Yorkshire, Andalucia, The Peak District, The Loire, that’s the job of the larger tourism organisations. What is your job, is to showcases what there is to do in your locality. Activities, events, attractions and scenery that guests could visit, experience, taste, see and explore while staying with you.

When posting and sharing on social media 80% of you content should be about your area and other topics of interest to your ideal guest (eg gardening, weddings, cookery, walking, adrenalin sports). Only 20% should be promotional, about you.

When writing copy for your website and for social media – it’s not about you! It’s about you guests. Use “you” instead of “we”. Remember it’s not about you!

There you have it 4 top marketing tips to transform your holiday rental business. Tips that work!