What comes to mind when you think of the word luxury? Considering the definition of the word is “the state of great comfort and extravagant living,” you might think of fancy cars, breathtaking views, and impeccable interior design. When it comes to luxury travel, though, there are various considerations to keep in mind. In this article, we’ll cover what qualifies a vacation rental as a luxury property, explain the benefits of marketing to luxury travelers, and provide ten tips for success.
What Makes a Vacation Rental a Luxury Property?
Three things comprise luxury travel: exclusivity, personalization, and an experience-oriented stay. We’ll briefly explain each of these three components below.
Exclusivity refers to that sense of “something special” that not everyone gets to experience. It’s a sense of uniqueness that’s catered to the small percentage of people who engage in luxury travel, rather than to the larger percentage of travelers who don’t choose to stay at luxury locations.
As far as personalization, that refers to carefully crafting your guest’s stay and potentially working with a travel agent or a trip designer. Ask your guests whether there will be any special events taking place, what they typically enjoy doing during their vacations, and how they like to relax, have fun, and explore. You’ll also want to ask about any food requests, dietary restrictions, or allergies, and of course you’ll want to know who your guests will be traveling with and whether they expect to have visitors.
Luxury guests generally do not make any of the plans for excursions and activities themselves; instead, everything should be set up for them ahead of time. That’s why it’s so important to ask your guests questions to determine what they’re looking to experience during their stay at your luxury vacation rental property.
The experience-oriented piece of luxury travel is made up of ensuring your vacation rental is the perfect setting for creating amazing memories and unforgettable moments for your guests to experience together. While a beautiful vacation rental is a huge part of the stay, the experiences your guests have there are even more integral. The guest experience should always be at the forefront when you’re running a luxury vacation rental.
What Are the Benefits of Marketing to Luxury Travelers?
Luxury guests typically expect you to go above and beyond; their standards are much higher than the average traveler’s. So why market to them? What makes this extra effort worth it? Well, a higher quality vacation rental experience means you can charge higher prices, which results in higher profit margins. Best of all, you can get those higher profits without having to increase the number of bookings of your rental. Plus, luxury travelers will provide more visibility for your brand, and by appealing to them, you can expand your market and appeal to more people overall.
10 Strategies for Marketing a Successful Luxury Vacation Rental Property
Below, find ten strategies that will help you succeed as a luxury vacation rental property owner.
1. Partner with travel influencers
To get your luxury vacation rental brand off the ground, you might want to consider partnering with travel influencers. These are people who have hundreds of thousands or even millions of followers on social media. You can reach out to them and work out a deal that benefits both of you. For instance, they could stay at your property for free or at a reduced rate, and in return, they could make social media posts promoting your vacation rental and all its amazing amenities to their sizable audience. This is a great way to get your foot in the door and generate interest in your vacation rental property. If you can get people talking about your luxury vacation rental, the bookings are sure to start flowing in.
2. Focus on the guest experience more than ever before
It’s always essential to think about the guest experience with your vacation rental property, but with a luxury property, you need to take the guest experience to another level completely. Think about it this way: The people who book luxury vacations can typically buy any physical item they want. What they can’t purchase in stores are experiences. Therefore, you need to offer them an experience that they cannot get anywhere else. This is absolutely key in order to get positive reviews.
3. Invest in professional photography and videography
When you’re running a luxury vacation rental property, smartphone footage of your rental just doesn’t cut it anymore. To appeal to luxury travelers, it’s important to invest in professional quality photography and videography. You might even want to get some aerial or drone shots of the rental and surrounding area. Hiring a professional video editor to put together your promotional video will also make a difference with potential guests. All the media you have of your vacation rental should scream luxury and quality.
4. Hire a copywriter
Luxury travelers have high expectations, and that applies to your listing as much as the vacation rental property itself. Unless you have quite the way with words and know the ins and outs of copywriting, it’s best to hire a professional copywriter to write your listing. They’ll be able to word the listing perfectly to keep potential guests interested. Plus, they’ll know how to write a listing with a goal in mind: convincing readers to take action and book a stay at your vacation rental.
5. Work with an interior designer
If you want to have a luxury vacation rental, then you need to be willing to spend on interior design. This often means working with an interior designer or decorator to come up with a cohesive theme and design throughout the house. Currently, the minimalist style is very popular for luxury vacation rentals. Minimalist properties have a light, open, and airy ambiance with limited furniture and plenty of open space. It’s great to combine various textures and utilize mirrors and framed artwork to add to the space. Good lighting, both natural and artificial, is essential, and be sure to emphasize your property’s entryway to give guests an excellent first impression.
6. Partner with luxury brands
Rather than providing generic toiletries, partnering with luxury brands to offer high-quality items for your guests to enjoy is a lovely touch. You may even be able to buy these toiletries in bulk at a discounted rate. While the average guest might expect to find body wash and shampoo in the vacation rental bathroom, luxury travelers have higher expectations. It’s a good idea to go above and beyond by providing a variety of complimentary toiletries for your guests to use.
7. Offer a high-quality welcome book
Instead of the average welcome binder, you might want to look into creating a high-quality welcome book. You could opt for the glossy magazine book or even choose a hardbound book style. Either way, your welcome binder will be elevated to the same level of luxury as the rest of the vacation rental property.
8. Optimize your website
Use SEO (Search Engine Optimization) principles to optimize your website. Add reviews and testimonials in an engaging format that makes guests excited to see more. A video or even a click-through slideshow is an excellent way to display the great feedback you’ve received from luxury travelers in the past.
9. Provide 24-hour service and a full staff
As mentioned previously, luxury travelers have much higher expectations than the average guest. They may even expect to have a full staff with a professional chef and housekeepers to make their stay more comfortable! Providing 24-hour service with a staff that you can rely on is sure to up the luxuriousness of the stay as a whole.
10. List your property on the right sites
When you have a luxury vacation rental property, you have to be careful about which sites you list it on. Some of the most common hosting websites will actually bring down the value of your property because they aren’t exclusive. Take the time to research your market and your ideal guests; determine which websites they tend to go to when looking for a vacation rental to stay at, and then list your property there. Use a channel manager or PMS (Property Management System) to keep up with bookings and manage a master calendar that pulls together bookings from all of your property’s listings.
Luxury travel is distinguished by three important factors: exclusivity, personalization, and an experience-oriented stay. A few of the main benefits of marketing your vacation rental property to luxury travelers are increased profits, improved brand visibility, and a larger market. Below, find our top ten strategies for running a successful luxury vacation rental property.
- Partner with travel influencers.
- Focus on the guest experience more than ever before.
- Invest in professional photography and videography.
- Hire a copywriter.
- Work with an interior designer.
- Partner with luxury brands.
- Offer a high-quality welcome book.
- Optimize your website.
- Provide 24-hour service and a full staff.
- List your property on the right sites.