The vacation rental industry is facing many challenges during these dynamic times.
- TripAdivsor Revolt https://www.linkedin.com/grp/home?gid=8360994
- Airbnb Superhost Viral Post https://medium.com/airbnb-superhosting/airbnb-why-did-you-terminate-my-account-an-open-letter-to-airbnb-9631213f8a1b
- Homeaway, Accept BIN or else https://www.linkedin.com/grp/post/69889-6034036231631888387#commentID_6036541838389698560http://skift.com/2014/12/11/homeaway-has-new-plan-to-force-vacation-rental-owners-to-accept-online-bookings/
This on top of regulatory issues that are not being addressed form the basis of the fragmentation that we are witnessing in the marketplace.
What is Causing These Dynamics :
These changes are a combination of maturing markets, cash flowing into the industry and the race to eventually take over your business (we are in the setup phase now). This began in the early part of the decade...and now manifesting itself into the "sharing economy". Listing sites and some Property Management Systems (PMS) started out by helping you build your business....now you are helping them build theirs at your expense. The success of this model is dependent on how much of your profits theycan share. The dynamics have changed to the point that you (and your business) are not the customers, you are the product.
How Do We Navigate These Dynamics:
Some managers and owners have already taken steps in protecting themselves. These efforts include, updating their skill sets, hiring profiles, guest interactions and marketing awareness to name just a few. All of these efforts highlight the respective Brands strengths to the traveler. The vacation rental traveler marketplace is highly engaged thanks to the marketing awareness created over the past few years from the listing sites pushing our data to the masses. Without you sharing your data ...these dynamics fall apart.
The Elephant in The Room...….is you.
Ultimately, you control the distribution and representation of your Brand. The investments you have made (past and present) in your brand are getting diluted and you continue to pay for it (literally). Ask yourself these three questions:
- Am I too dependent on third party listing sites or Property Management Systems ?
- Are my marketing costs going up or down ?
- Can I predict future costs ?
The future decisions you make now will be the difference between your brand surviving or thriving in the new economy. You hold the keys.....stop giving them away.
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