A Quick, Snackable Guide to Content Marketing
Extract more value from each piece of content you create
We all swim through oceans of content every day as we scroll through the internet and social media. With a sharp eye you can always tell what content was strategically designed for an audience and when it was fired wishfully into the ether. Accessibility levels the playing field but those with a content strategy are simply playing a different game.
If you’re a vacation rental property manager, content should be easy, right? Everyone wants to dream so you just put that in front of them? Not so fast. If it were that simple, no company would struggle with inventory growth and all vacation rentals would be booked solid!
Whether you have a content strategy in place, or you’ve just started one, it’s important to always revisit your plan to make sure it’s innovative and hitting the mark. Instead of just adding to the sea of content that’s out there – use your content strategy to improve brand awareness, increase conversions and boost your revenue.
Build a Coherent Strategy Based on Data
Create homeowner personas
I’ve never picked up the phone, dialed at random and delivered a message to whomever answers – except of course when I may or may not have made a few prank calls in my younger years…I share this because it’s vital you intentionally select who you want to deliver a certain message to. Consider your content as your active company voice. Who do you want to call?
Break down the intended recipient of your message by demographic, geographic, psychographic (lifestyle) and behavioural segments. For each of our partners at Vintory, we build out homeowner personas. It is worthwhile learning if your market is full of what we call “First Time Franks” – a first time renter, or “RBO Ruby” a seasoned “do-it-yourselfer.” It changes what, how and where you deliver what you want to say.
Each data point you learn about your target market sharpens your message. Learn where they hang out both socially and digitally and what they respond to.
- Is your audience looking for expertise and so are blogs the content to create?
- Are they younger and gravitate to visual content?
- Do you need a buzzing Instagram account populated with places, faces and animals?
Either way your content needs to be visually appealing, quickly scan-able and interesting for it to be click-worthy to your key target market.
Decide Your Aims
At Lake Placid, 2010 I felt an inspiration like none other and decided I wanted to complete an Ironman. I set my aim and toiled, sweat, vomited and swam my way to the finishing line in 2013. However, without the initial aim, I would never have even been on the Floridian start line.
Your strategy must have a guiding aim. What do you want to achieve? Full occupancy rentals, followers, increased inventory, exposure, brand awareness, market dominance or what is your overarching aim? At Vintory, we begin each partner relationship by goal-setting – before we discuss content or tactics. With your aims in hand, it’s time to craft a message that is relatable to your audience.
Delivering YOUR Message
Humanizing content is the challenge. With every property management company across the US pumping out content, it is a challenge to stand out. Ultimately, you need to open a dialogue with your clients and build a relationship.
Great content isn’t one way – it’s two way. Ask questions, respond to comments, direct message and email people back. Respond to everything like a person, not like a company. Guests and homeowners want to like and trust you, know you’re a good fit for them. Take time and turn your audience into fans!
Take social media. People are now trained to skip by a salesy sponsored ad. Remember, it is social first. Social media commands a defter touch. Create interest and intrigue into your brand with a relatable or emotion eliciting message. Tease out promotions and develop funnels to attract to your website or get in touch.
People respond to being:
- Thoughtfully helped (not ordered)
- Entertained including made to laugh
Keep it Simple and Learn Fast
Overcomplicating and overcommitting are just going to stifle your progress. They may even turn you off altogether. Make sure your plan is realistic within your schedule and for your team.
If it is your first time carrying out a content strategy, review your progress after 3 months. Conduct a social or content audit. What worked? Who did my Facebook ads reach? Who read the blogs? What time were successful posts shared and what day of the week? Scrutinize and optimize the plan because the next 3 months should be more effective. Consider building a content calendar from here on out.
One of the first things you will learn in those 3 months is that knowing the basics of SEO is beneficial. Don’t just go keyword stuffing, making your posts unreadable. Know what you need to for effective ranking content.
If you need help, just ask
Knowing what content to write, post, share or even gather can be a headache for many vacation rental property managers. Managing vacation rentals is your wheelhouse and where you nail it every time. Converting and successful content might not be.
One of the biggest knocks on business owners and managers is waiting too long to ask for help. That doesn’t need to be the case. We’re here to help whenever you might need it.
The Vintory team specializes in content that captivates your audience and we respond to your questions and emails quickly. Let us do the writing, SEO and content generation for you! If you have a question or a tip to share with me, drop me a comment below, or connect with me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Author: Brooke Pfautz
Brooke is the CEO and Founder of Vintory and is well known in the Vacation Rental industry as the authority when it comes to growing Vacation Rental inventory. You'll find Brooke at his home office, on the latest Vacation Rental webinar or podcast, or at industry events across the States.