Conventional wisdom suggests that more is better when placing properties on each vacation rental listing channel. Many believe that sharing the exact same listing on Airbnb, HomeAway, Booking.com and others means more visibility to travelers and, presumably, more bookings.
But the reality is that a one-size-fits-all approach is counterproductive. One strategy may be compatible with a certain channel template and work for that channel's travelers, but could be completely off for another channel.
This can result in wasted time, money, and opportunities when no extra bookings are realized.
Syndicating a property strategy, not just the property to a channel
Many channel managers are focused on syndicating properties, but with an evolving vacation rental audience that demands unique experiences, a more targeted marketing approach is necessary. Focusing on syndicating a property management company’s marketing strategy and creating a customized strategy for each channel is a way to reach travelers of varying tastes, needs and demographics.
The shift from a single-message marketing approach enhances finding the right buyer for the right vacation rental property.
It's becoming more necessary to develop content and rules that uniquely cater to the traveler type in each channel to maximize exposure and success. What works on Airbnb, for example, doesn't always fit with HomeAway, and property managers need to be able to customize the message to attract today's travelers.
“A traditional approach is syndicating your properties to the channel, regardless of the specificity of the listing,” said Sonia Chennoufi, Kigo Product Marketing Manager. “Now, it’s about customizing your strategy according to the channel you are targeting. You are syndicating your strategy, not syndicating your property.”
Ideally, the strategy should create adaptive rules for content, pricing and flexibility of stay based on availability for each channel. This is especially important because it solves the big problem of managing the gaps within a minimum-stay policy.
Invariably, when the gaps between minimum-stay blocks don't align, property managers must manually adjust rates to fill the space. The nights might be discounted just to fill them, lowering revenue and profit, despite the owner's wishes. Sometimes, the gaps can't be filled.
Either way, money is often left on the table because lower revenue is received, or not at all.
"It's a trend in the marketplace to discount," Chennoufi said. "It happens a lot. Property managers would be happy to allow guests to book with a lower price when needed, but owners don't want to allow it because they have expenses to cover."
Better meeting owner expectations by filling gaps profitably
The brand new Kigo Channel Manager, unveiled today at KigoWorld, is designed to help generate quality revenue. The platform adapts restrictions based on urgency or shifts in demand, relaxes length-of-stay limits based on maximizing occupancy and quickly modifies pricing strategies for misses in occupancy or an unexpected spike in booking volume.
The unique solution enables vacation rental managers to better meet expectations of owners and have a greater alliance with owners.
“Because rules can be set up for this, property managers can present the rules to the owner and say, ‘Look, we’re going to set up this rule for the gap and we have a 30-percent increase, so we will be able to cover all of the costs for the stay and still make some money out of it,” says Chennoufi.
The solution also takes advantage of multiple payment/cancellation policies and varies discount or promotional discounts on each vacation rental listing channel.
Integrating with the latest preferred channel technology
The feature is part of a bigger message that the Channel Manager integrates with the latest application programming interface (API) of preferred channel partners. Clients using Channel Manager take advantage of the latest technology of each of Kigo’s partners.
By syndicating a property management strategy rather than the property, more bookings are possible using fewer channels. Properties can increase performance per channel and reduce marketing fees by focusing on only developing the partnerships that are most meaningful.
Use Kigo Channel Manager to create a customized strategy for each vacation rental listing channel. Learn more!