As vacation rental homeowners, we often forget about the very basic building blocks of our marketing efforts, the online listing. Luckily, you don’t need to go out and get an MBA. When you simply put on your marketing cap and identify your property’s greatest assets – inside and outside – you can create a listing that is the most effective possible in bringing you maximum booking success!
Hands down, the single most effective feature of a listing to a vacationer is its pictures. Ideally, there should be as many posted as possible and they should be of great quality. At a minimum, include an exterior shot, the living room, dining room or area, kitchen, at least one bedroom, a sun or family room, a porch/deck/patio, and the yard.
But don’t forget a picture of the nearest beach! There is not a home on the Cape, Nantucket or the Vineyard that’s not at least an easy drive from a nice beach, and, chances are, your prospective tenants will love seeing a picture of the beach they are most likely to use while staying in your home.
With the ease of digital photography these days, it’s so easy to take great quality pictures (even your cell phone can take decent photos in a jiff). And poor resolution can indicate a dark, shabby, unattractive property – even if it isn’t!
Adding a video of your home and surroundings enhances your listing tremendously. Like still photographs, digital video is very easy to take and upload, and the posting of a 60-second video is free on all WeNeedaVacation.com listings. Especially if your property offers expansive views, consider creating a hybrid piece that includes streaming video of the views with a series of photo montages of the interior. View more information on creating a video.
If you have the opportunity to include captions with your pictures, seize it! Vacationers’ eyes will be drawn right to your pictures, and the captions underneath provide a great way to offer information not evident or obvious in the picture. With a few adjectives – such as “sunny” or “comfy” or “spacious” – a caption can evoke a positive impression about what the viewer is seeing.
See Part 2 of the Ideal Listing series, where we talk about getting the most out of your guest reviews.
So, what’s the status of your pictures? Do you have plenty posted? And are they clear and bright? If you have captions, are they descriptive and informative?
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