As we see HomeAway continue to follow the TripAdvisor playbook in how to alienate the professional vacation rental managers, Homes to Go acquiring Tripping and advertising oceanfront homes in Florida for $49.00 per night. We must ask ourselves, is history repeating?
Who wants instant bookable properties ?
In most every conversation with vacation rental professionals the topic of Instant Book comes up:
“What do you think about X company?”
“ Is it a good idea?”
“I don’t like it..but what choice do I have?”
Depending on where you are in your business lifecycle instant book can be beneficial. Of course, the main goal should be making your vacation rental brand the “go to” for #bookdirect.
If your brand is established - high risk
Limit the inventory you place on Instant book as you risk losing more in brand recognition through dilution. If you driving more than 50% of your bookings direct, you should be investing in your brand or partners that amplify your brand. You should be implementing Social Media and targeted email to your database
If your brand is not established - low risk
Partner with the distribution(s) that make the most sense in your region. If your international destination, your distribution will be much broader. In any case, you should have a plan in place to make sure you continue to build your brand while refining your internal process for customer success. If you have limited inventory, highlight what is unique to your brand and/or destination. Remember, that everything starts with “one”. One booking, one great experience, one repeat booking, one referral….
If you are managing multiple properties, brand equity becomes important to your long term success.