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How to Market Your Airbnb with Great Content

By Cedric Jackson, February 7, 2018
How to Market Your Airbnb with Great Content

Airbnb has proven to be a valuable resource all over the world for people who enjoy the comforts of home and who dislike the hefty price tags and static décor of most commercial hotels. It is so valuable, in fact, that it seems like everybody and their cousin is utilizing their unused space as an Airbnb these days.

Of course, some people are going to be more successful with it than others. Like any other business effort, there are many factors that will determine the success of a given property. Mostly, though, it boils down to how well you market it, and the success your marketing strategy boils down to two things: the quality of the content you produce to promote it, and how you promote.

Airbnb has all kinds of hints and tips on their website to help with the latter, so today, let's focus on the former and make sure your content is at least attracting the right potential clients. I want to give a little useful advice on two key areas: the content itself and making it SEO friendly.

For the uninitiated, SEO stands for “search engine optimization,” and it is one of a key list of avenues that will drive traffic to your listing and any other web-based resources you use to promote it.

Developing Site Content

When writing Airbnb listings, it is advisable to treat it like any other real estate listing for a rental. I have posted a couple recent blogs about real estate listings that I will recommend referencing as companion pieces to this particular blog. Much of the information contained in them applies to your Airbnb.

There are two key areas of promotional content that are most often utilized for Airbnb listings: written content (like listings, blogs, and social media posts), and visual content (still images and video). At this time, Airbnb limits the use of video in listings but does allow it in your profile.

Sometimes, though, these kinds of limitations provide the best avenues for expanding your reach. We'll talk a little about social media and blogging in a minute, but for now, let's discuss your profile video.

The profile video in an Airbnb listing is your best opportunity to make an impression on potential guests. For this reason, you should never just record one off the cuff and without preparation. You want a brief, well-scripted introduction that introduces you to your guests with a high degree of warmth, hospitality, and professionalism.

Note that I said that it should introduce “you,” not the property. You actually want people to click past your profile to view your listing. Save content about the room(s) and amenities for the appropriate page. If the expectation is a warm welcome and you deliver a sales pitch, you're done.

Remember that every time someone clicks through to see more of your content, it's a victory. The more time someone spends on your pages, the more likely he or she is to book. The way you make this happen is by giving them lots of content with which to engage. Here are a few ideas:

Start a blog about your property or town – Keep readers up to date on the goings-on where you are, especially if you are in or near a popular tourist area. Great content that entices travelers to visit the area and also offers them a viable option on where to crash saves readers time and can quickly them into guests.

Post small videos to YouTube – This can also spotlight the property, neighborhood, or town. It can also give you the opportunity to let people see a little more of your daily routine. This gives people confidence in your ability to tend to your property and meet their needs during their stay.

Be active on social media – Using the same avenues as listed above, keep your fans and followers on social media connected by maintaining a consistent and positive presence on all your channels. Regular postings that link out to your other content (particularly your profile and listings pages) will help you increase bookings and also rank higher in searches both from within Airbnb and on the major search engines.

Airbnb and SEO

Since I just mentioned it, here's a little bit of advice on how to boost on- and offsite SEO for your listing. I'm paraphrasing the advice on Airbnb's own website here, so for a more comprehensive explanation of how this works, click here.

First, make sure that each section of your listing is complete. Incomplete listings are almost never featured prominently on the site. The content you create here is very important. A detailed but succinct description of the space and its unique qualities coupled with high-quality images is the single most important part of your listing.

You should also utilize the tools available on the site to make booking easier and be sure your rates are in line with similar properties within a reasonable radius. Since these things gravitate away from content creation, I'll leave it to you to check out the page on your own.

Working with a Copywriter

As a final note, I would like to offer a little advice about your written content. If you feel like your own efforts aren't resulting in enough bookings, or you feel that someone with experience writing in this space would be better at it, trust your instincts. Hiring a real estate copywriter or one who specializes in travel copywriting would be a responsible move here. One with experience in social media management and SEO best practices would be an even better choice.

Even if you decide to do all the writing yourself, I strongly recommend spending a modest sum on the opinion of a professional copywriter or copywriting agency. It can help you get more bookings and give you the knowledge about content creation you need to eventually branch out on your own.

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