Social media has changed our lives and how we market our businesses. We have the ability to reach more people than ever with our vacation rentals. Because of this, we recommend that you focus on marketing strategies that work for you and your brand. With that being said, one social platform that may not be in your mix that you might want to consider is Pinterest. Where Facebook is largely an audience of 50 and older and Instagram is 45 and younger, Pinterest users are all age groups. Here is a vacation rental marketing strategy for Pinterest that you may want to implement.
Why Pinterest for Your Vacation Rental Marketing Strategy
Social media has become a large part of our lives, and it has changed the landscape of marketing. As users of social media, we have moved towards using each platform for specific purposes. You might be thinking, “I didn’t even know Pinterest was that big anymore.” Yes, it is still huge. Pinterest just went public this year and as a result, has grown into a powerhouse social platform. Many people use Pinterest to search for ideas like recipes, DIY crafts and home projects. It is a search engine more than social interaction. This is important to you as a property manager or owner because people search for and plan travel with Pinterest boards.
Think about it. It’s a natural fit for travel planning. I personally have a board called ‘Travel Around the World in a Lifetime’ and it’s all the places that I want to travel to. Once I start planning a trip I go through that board and start finding other pins of places I want to stay and see while in that destination. And certainly I’m not the only one that does this. Lots of people do this and Pinterest recognizes the importance of travel on the platform. It’s so important to them that Pinterest partnered with Airbnb to create an annual report about travel trends of Pinterest users.
Pinterest Strategies for Your Vacation Rental
So, the question is how can you use Pinterest for your vacation rental business? Like any other marketing activity, you need to take the time to do it. Your vacation rental marketing strategy is important! You will need to take the time to work on it or hire someone to work on it for you. Here are some ideas to get you pinning like a pro.
Create Property Boards and Pins: Like every platform out there, Pinterest is a visual platform and photos play a huge role in getting re-pinned. Dark and yellow phone images are not going to cut it on Pinterest. Remember Pinterest is built like a digital vision board. You don’t put bad photos on your vision board, do you? Hence, Pinterest users don’t want bad photos in their vacation vision. So upgrade your photos (get our photography tips from the pros). Then, create a board for each one of your properties and start putting your photos up. You want to have a great headline and description and don’t forget to link that pin to your website.
Create Live Like a Local Boards and Pins: The trend in travel is to live like a local. While we are still doing the tourist stuff, everyone wants to experience a place as if they live there. So, let people know what it’s like to live in your neighborhood and feature its best assets.
Travel Hacks: This is always good for traffic. Travelers are always looking for tips and tricks on traveling. Tips like how to pack two weeks’ worth of clothes and accessories in a small carry on. Also, include topics like the best travel-size products that meet TSA regulations. The best sites to get the best flight deals. Think “how do we hack traveling”?
Welcome Packet Board: Do you give your guests a stellar welcome gift? Feature it in a board! So, when someone inquires about your property you can send them the link to the board to show them how it would be experiencing your property from check-in to check out.
Guest Book Board: Next, encourage your guests to “sign” your Guest Book Board. Invite them to a group board where they can upload their own photos of your property. There are lots of benefits to this board – content that you don’t have to generate yourself (score, time-saver), group boards on Pinterest rank high in the Pinterest algorithm for getting found and good reviews from peers of your property. You can’t lose on this one.
Pinterest does have an ad platform like Facebook. You can promote your pins if you have the budget. Obviously, promoted pins do get more impressions and are seen more than if you just post. When you switch your account to a business account, the ad platform is accessible and easy to navigate. Also, Pinterest is very helpful in teaching you how to use their ads platform for free. You can schedule a personal call with someone at Pinterest that will show you how to start an ad and target the right people. If you have room in your budget it is worth looking into.
Getting found on Pinterest
Pinterest is like Google in that keywords in your titles and descriptions help people find what they are looking for. Try using Pinterest for your next vacation. What would you search for? Make a note of those terms because you’re going to want to incorporate them into your pin titles and descriptions. People use Pinterest like they use Google so many of the same SEO rules apply. If you want to dive deeper into Pinterest SEO this article and video on Tailwind gets into some nerdy strategies that can really help.
Make it easy
The biggest key to any marketing strategy is to make it easy for you and your guests. If it’s not easy for you, you are not going to do it. And if it’s not easy for your guests, they are not going to engage. It’s not an exact comparison, but at Bookfull we incorporate Pinterest into our marketing strategy by sharing our posts like this. Furthermore, Pinterest very quickly became our 3rd highest traffic driver to our website. In the last 30 days, we have increased our impressions by 119%.
We keep it very simple by just hitting the share button on our blog posts and pinning the photo from the article. We incorporate a few Pinterest specific graphics and re-share some of our best articles. For the most part, we keep it as easy as possible. Just showing up is driving traffic for us and I’m confident it will for you too!
I’ve put all these tips and our Pinterest process in a handy cheatsheet so you can swipe how we do it and try it for yourself. Download it here.