If you are looking into reading social media strategy for short term rental business in most cases you will not find anything specific. Most of the articles or blogs will be about small businesses in general.
But short-term rentals offer a unique USP. They have multiple listings with specific operational aspects, are located in various destinations, and are short-term.
So, how do you plan your social media strategy for short term rental business?
Let’s take a look.
Which Social Media Platforms to use & Posting Frequency for each Platform?
Before jumping into the social media strategy for short term rental business, let’s take a look at where you should post, and when you should post.
Your goal should be to post at least 2-5 times a week. For rentals, your go-to social media channel should be Instagram. As the platform is image-focused and has a large proportion of its viewers looking for their next travel destination, you can plan your social media strategy for short term rental business accordingly. The next two platforms that you should post on our Facebook and Twitter. If you have the option to post on TikTok, then go ahead as well.
If you are blogging for vacation rentals then you can cover three major topics:
- Posts about your rental space (30-50% of total content)
- What to do around your place? (30-50% of total content)
- Sales and promotional offers (10-20% of total content)
Once you plan your blogs according to this, you can sort your posts via intent – inspirational, informational, or promotional. As another dimension to the content strategy, you can plan reviews from happy guests, the team behind the rentals, the best things to do around the place, etc.
Hashtags are important for Instagram and are quite popular. So, when planning your social media strategy for short term rental business, remember to add hashtags that relate to your specific posts.
Some rental hashtags to choose from:
#vacationrental #vacation #travel #vacationhome #vacationrentals #familyvacation #vacationmode #homeawayfromhome #getaway #travelgram #wanderlust #holiday #instatravel
Choose Your Short-Term Niche:
Your niche is about getting people to rent out your property. So, you need to define your ideal guests. These can include:
- Large groups (based on the number of rooms you have)
- Business travelers
- Young audiences
- Workcation couples
Read as much as you can about Millennial, Gen Z, or Gen X travelers. Families with young children would love to see baby cots, prams, and toys, while young couples would love grills, and a romantic nook or corner. Wifi is something that every generation wants now. If you have a pool then that can be your biggest USP. If you are interested in groups, then showcase how many people your rental can hold. This will help plan your social media strategy for short term rental business.
Writing The Best Vacation Rental Descriptions
When you plan your social media strategy for short term rental business, not only do you need to upload spectacular images but also write inspirational descriptions. Keep the focus on your vacation rental, but inspire them to take a vacation at your location.
Check what your direct competitors are doing. See if they mention any unique features. Find your own, and list them out. In case your direct competitors are not doing that much on social media, try using popular hashtags to find accounts that are in your niche.
But, keep your target audience in mind when writing descriptions.
What language connects them? What type of features would they appreciate?
Also, use bullet points and hashtags.
It is recommended to have the shortest link to your booking page. That way as soon as people are impressed with your photos and descriptions they can book your vacation rental. You could also build stories with your previous visitors’ photos. Showcase how they enjoyed their stay with you. Start highlighting topics like guides, DIYs, or things to do in and around your rental.
Planning for Instagram Stories
Stories are the most interactive aspect of Instagram. So, when planning your social media strategy for short term rental business, you need a dedicated social media manager to stay on top of your social media postings. This includes Stories for Instagram. Stories are easy to create as it is more casual and imprints the moment. But, Stories require creativity and personal touch.
So, when creating stories you need to gather inspiration from general postings with modifications based on the moment. Some examples could be – a beautiful sunset, a romantic dinner set for the lovely couple staying with you, DIY ideas for the children, etc.
Social Media Posting Ideas
When planning your social media strategy for short term rental business, you need to be aware of some of the most critical aspects of your future guests. As owners, you may have first-hand experience, but you need to share that with your social media marketer as well.
So, put yourself in the position of a guest. Why would they want to check out your social media accounts?
If you think it is because you have posted some pictures that she likes, then you are wrong. People like and share hundreds of pictures on Instagram on any given day. So, to keep your target audience engaged you need to add content that matters to them. Food, things to do, nightlife, places to see, enjoy a home away from home – any of these could be your next big social media strategy for short term rental business.
Getting Direct Bookings via Social Media
The ultimate goal for your rental business is to drive all social media to make new reservations. So, you would either need a booking widget or a special form that customers can fill out to make reservations. Ideally, you want your potential guests to pay at least some amount in advance. So, your website is perfect for bookings. You could be using any social media platform like Facebook, Twitter, or even Medium.com (for blogs) that would lead back to your website.
The best way is to connect your website with a management system that is synced to your social media posts and listings. You can then have a standalone page within your domain and can manage listings where bookings are much easier to manage.
Generating Social Media Traffic
Now that you have your website live, and your social media posts planned, you need to start getting your target audience moving. Posting on social media without having any Call-To-Action (CTA) such as forms makes no sense. You need to make sure that the synergy of these assets is in perfect sync so that your direct booking plan can work beautifully.
So, what is the source of the traffic to your direct booking website?
- Social Media Traffic:
- Links from Instagram stories or reels
- Links from Instagram bio
- Links to your YouTube description
- Links from Airbnb, Pinterest, LinkedIn, etc
- Email Traffic:
- Direct website link in emails
- Partner Traffic:
- Links from partner websites
- Links for emails
- Links from partner promotions
- Organic Traffic:
- People land on your website directly when SEO is properly done
Your main goal is to get the ‘source of traffic’ ball rolling in your social media strategy for short term rental business.
Why is Youtube such a Great Social Media Channel for Vacation Rentals?
When planning your social media strategy for short term rental business, YouTube should be one of the social media channels you consider. In the organic format, you can highlight vacation rentals well. But, it does not need to be an expensive video shoot, you could do it with your phone, a few random people, and shots of your apartment.
The main essence is to create a video of every prominent aspect of your vacation rental so that you can:
- Create rich listing pages with your videos
- Get organic traffic from YouTube, Instagram, Facebook
- Repurpose the videos for stories and ‘best places’ type videos
Here is our example of YouTube-friendly titles for vacation rental videos:
Holiday rental with roof-top terrace in the heart of London at LoveLondon.com
The template for this is:
[property type] + [special feature] + [location] + [Official website]
- Property type: holiday inn, cabin, apartment, lodge, old castle/chateau
- Special feature: Major USP like roof-top view, indoor heated pool, wheelchair accessible, etc
- Location: country, city, or region
- Official website: Your official website link
Add your booking link as close to the start of the description as possible. That way the link is over the ‘Show More’ button. When adding the video remember to add a Geo-location of the video. This will help especially for SEO.
Remember that listings that have videos have 2x higher conversion rates. Now that you know how to get direct bookings, it is time to understand how to inorganically get traffic to your rental in your social media strategy for short term rental business.
Boosting Posts on Facebook and Instagram
When you see your post or video gaining a lot of engagement and traction, you need to set up a paid boost. If you post specific words such as ‘rental’, ‘vacation’, and ‘apartment for rent then you fall into the Facebook Meta Special Ad Category in the ‘Housing’ section. This means that your ad targeting will be severely limited. According to Facebook Rules, your ads will not be showcased based on: gender, age, postal code, exclusion targeting, saved audiences, and lookalike audiences.
Now you know everything you need to plan your social media strategy for short term rental business. But this is not the complete picture. Aspects like Website SEO or email marketing strategies need to be explained in detail.
But you can follow the below-mentioned process to make your social media plans easier:
- Connect with a social media marketing specialist or an agency
- Choose the right social media accounts and add proper bios or descriptions for your brand
- Add the right links to your booking page
- Make a posting plan, follow it every day, and update it every month
- Separate your account growth from your direct bookings and use both tactics
- Actively use the social media platform functionalities like hashtags, @mentions, @links to stories and reels, geo-tagging
- Integrate promotional campaigns with direct booking tools to add promotions, and offers, and more easily
- Run paid campaigns in such a way that your page is not blocked or your ad manager is not locked (especially by Facebook Meta)
Good luck with all your social media marketing endeavors!