Social Media Tips for Vacation Rental Owners: Facebook and Twitter
Owning a vacation rental is supposed to be fun, right? Vacationers having the time of their life in your home. You, as an owner, earn income from a property you love in a place people enjoy visiting. There’s plenty of upside! We thought we’d start out the week by talking about some tips you can use to make your vacation rental a bit more “social,” since words like Facebook and Twitter are part of everyday conversation.
In today’s post, we’ll visit two different social media platforms (Facebook and Twitter) and share some tips that you as an owner can use to:
- Spread the word about your vacation rental
- Encourage more referrals from existing travelers who love your home
- Garner positive reviews and feedback on existing listings from your travelers
We’ll cover LinkedIn on Thursday’s post as that site has some very specific nuances.
Your friends are there. Perhaps some of your colleagues. In fact, there are over 800 million users worldwide who think Facebook is a great idea. We share everything on Facebook these days, it seems. Why not your vacation rental? For our homeowners at Evolve, we share a few properties a week on our page and the feedback we get is fantastic. Why not share your vacation rental listing every now and then on Facebook? Just copy the listing URL from the site where you have a listing and paste it into your status.
We connect with new people all the time. What better way to spread the word about your little slice of vacation rental heaven with people you know and trust? Sharing on Facebook is especially great due to the thumbnail image each status update can have. It’s a great visual showcase for your home.
If you’re a part of the Twittersphere like 100 million other people across the globe, it’s an excellent outlet for sharing your vacation rental. Now, you don’t want to be spammy and broadcast the fact that you have a stellar view in Aspen 24/7. But there are a few key ways you can take advantage of Twitter’s resources to spread the news about your home:
- Hash tags – #ttot: There’s a constant thread of news being shared in the travel industry under the hash tag #ttot (which stands for Travel Talk on Twitter). Not only are these great threads for starting general conversations on the travel industry – they’re great for sharing (with discretion) your vacation rental information with travel-savvy folk. View the stream for this hash tag here.
- Hash tags – #traveltuesday: Every Tuesday on Twitter, there’s more than the average level of travel-related content floating around. Why? It’s Travel Tuesday! If you want to share news on your vacation home (or perhaps your listing on one of the vacation rental websites), create a great headline and drop your tweet into the Travel Tuesday mix. You can view the stream for this hash tag here and see the types of things people share on Tuesdays in the travel world.
Making Your Home More Social
Since we’re only talking about Facebook and Twitter today, here are some tips you can use to encourage your travelers to connect with you both before and after they leave your doorstep:
- In-Home Social Cards:Why not leave a laminated card on the kitchen counter or another prominent location letting travelers know how to reach you in the social sphere? Give links to:
- Your home’s website, if you have one
- Sites where your listing is displayed
- Your personal Twitter account
- Your property manager’s Facebook page or Twitter account
- An email address where they can request to stay up-to-date on rental specials
- Requesting Reviews: You know that reviews are the life’s blood of your vacation rental’s popularity. Why not include on your home’s social card a request for a review of their experience? While many of the listing sites automatically send out these requests following a stay, you can be even more proactive in obtaining them with a little discrete advertising on your part. And don’t forget – when someone leaves a review, respond if the site allow and send them a note thanking them for renting!
So tune in Thursday when we’ll take on LinkedIn and see how that platform’s nuances can help you share your vacation home even further and in new ways. While sites like Evolve do the heavy lifting for you when it comes to broadcasting your home to our partners like VRBO, HomeAway, TripAdvisor, and FlipKey, it never hurts to know how and where else you can spread the word if it suits your fancy.