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If you want to create a remarkable vacation rental company you need powerful marketing strategies.

And If you’re going to be a successful property manager or vacation rental owner in this increasingly competitive industry, you’ve got to take full advantage of one of the most effective market strategies you have…your brand.

With all that is happening right now in the vacation rental market many problems may arise, but your brand, or lack thereof, shouldn’t be one!

Do you have a remarkable vacation rental brand?

A quality brand will make your vacation rental services distinctive and unique when compared to other vacation rental companies in the industry.

Developing your own brand is like standing on a hill.

A brand helps you to stand on higher ground than your competition, allowing you to position yourself better in the market.

A brand equips you with more than just a product or service. It’s an experience.

Humanized Brands

Brands today are becoming more social and vocal than ever. They’re almost taking on the persona of real people.

Your goal should be to masterfully craft your brand so that it will form a connection with consumers visually, emotionally and culturally. Is it time to re-think your brand?

Brands are alive! They can have beliefs, opinions and raving fans.

vacation rental brands are alive with personality

Since brands are “alive” they have the ability to “touch people.”

A brand can support causes

“Brands that establish a reputation for environmental stewardship among today’s youngest consumers have an opportunity to not only grow market share but build loyalty among the power-spending millennials of tomorrow.” – Grace Farraj

A brand can be controversial

I’m sure you’ve heard about the Starbucks red cup controversy?

The emotional reaction from this controversy shows how well Starbucks has done at integrating their brand into the culture.

Your brand may not be as big as Starbucks but it doesn’t matter. A myth I’d like to debunk is that branding is only for larger businesses and corporations.

The Experience

A smart business owner uses the power of the brand and its branding angle to win a spot in both the hearts and minds of travelers.

Can you can think of a couple of brands that do this really well?  Coca Cola and Disney come to mind for me.

It’s brands like these that have a positive association, a familiar name and in the mind of the consumer, these brands are perceived as being higher in value compared to their competitors.

Let’s have a look at Disney for a moment, one of the amazing world brand leaders.

Disney is an example of branding with purpose.

The brand is an intentional brand and needs ongoing work and determination to fully support the brand and what it stands for. Disney knows that having a high quality brand means you have to be fully committed to the brand.

Set Brand Standards

Disney’s brand message is consistent in everything including its marketing. Disney is fully aware that offering your customers consistency in your service and offerings is key to a reliable and successful brand.

Disney’s brand represents good old family fun, super clean locations, and of course excellent service.

Disney only employs those that meet up to its standards.

I remember at one time you couldn’t work for Disney if you had facial hair. That’s how committed they were and are to their brand.

Disney goes as far as taking their employees to their Disney University to help them learn their roles as a Disney employee and to provide their guests with exceptional customer services.

They want to empower each employee with the proper tools to support the brand’s identity.

What are the benefits of having a powerful brand?

Customer loyalty and brand value.

Every time a customer prefers what your business offers, they’ve just increased the brand value of your company.
In addition you’ll also be able to retain more guests as repeat renters. You may ask how does branding help me retain more return guests.

The answer is in your brand experience. When a traveler rents your vacation home, it’s the experience that they receive that’ll persuade them to rent from you once more.

Your brand is what helps to connect your vacation rental with the type of traveler it’ll attract. It’s similar to the law of attraction, you’ve heard of it right?

For example, if you put out luxury, you’ll get travelers who want luxury. If you offer eco-friendly accommodations, those will be the types of people you will attract.

On the other hand, if you’re only thinking budget, you’ll always get the budget traveler.

What does your brand represent?

Create Brand Fans

Creating brand fans reduces the costs of your marketing and helps you to rely less on listing sites because you’re recycling your leads.

It’ll help you to break through your industry much more effectively further helping you maintain and raise your piece of the market share.

And your brand fans will tell other people about their experiences, especially on social networks.

FYI- 80% of consumers are more likely to seek solutions from the brands they follow on social channels.

Are you leveraging your brand?

How To Train Your Vacation Rental!

We can learn from Disney in the sense that proper training is needed to set up a consistent brand experience.

We are in the hospitality business. Remember that if you need a crash course on hospitality…take it!

If your staff needs to be trained properly to support the company’s vision, do it.

These are the fundamentals of creating a respected and sought after brand for your vacation rental businesses.

I hope this blog was helpful to you. If you have a question or need some assistance with your brand, please feel free to reach out to me.

And stay tuned for my post on the 3 Guiding Lights That Give Your Brand a Soul.

What do you think about this post? Please share your comments below!


  • Yolanda Simons says:

    I have some homework to do. Thanks for helping us owners get out of the line of fire Jay. I’ll be following along with you. Again thanks for your help and commitment to the industry.

  • Josh says:

    I didn’t want to sound ignorant by asking, you how do I “create a brand” for my vacation rental. It seems simple but I was having some trouble about what a brand means and how to establish one.

    Looks like you are in tune with us and what we may or may not know. Anyway thanks very much for helping me understand branding better. Looking forward to more on the subject.

    • Jay William says:

      Hey Josh, there are many like you who dont fully understand what a brand is and how to create a meaningful brand, so dont feel bad. That is exactly why I created this piece.

      There are a few layers to creating a great brand. Luckily for you I’m going to take all the guesswork out of it for everyone.

      I’m about to share a real example of a brand and its conception with specific steps on how I build out a brand. You’re signed up for my newsletter Josh so you’ll get the latest. Let me know how you get a long.

  • Susan Hennes says:

    Starbucks can kiss it! I’m with Donald Trump. We should boycott Starbucks!

  • Thanks, Jay! I found this one of your most inspiring articles. It got me brainstorming and making notes of things we can do to promote our brand even more.

    • Jay William says:

      Hi Liz,

      It’s a great feeling to hear a compliment like yours. It makes the effort worth it! Thank you. I’m glad you took something from it. Liz, what do you think was the big takeaway for you?

      • I think it was in how you broke down what branding can mean. We often get hung up thinking of brand as logo and graphics, when in fact it is whatever makes you and your business stand out. Breaking it into the categories, was clever and well done, humanoid and controversial and stand out and service. It just came together for me in this article.

  • Great post Jay! As branding and marketing strategy consultant, I’ll add that brand has to be genuine, reflect something you truly believe in and something that you are willing to defend and live by.

    Your brand should be experienced every step of the way by the guest and your team if you have one. One thing that brand does not forgive is schizophrenia. You need to be all in when it comes to branding. Your brand can be destroyed very quickly if your cleaning team/property manager does’t know about it, worse doesn’t embrace it, if your processes are not in line with your brand or all the above.

    If your brand is about having fun, then everything has to be fun, even booking your property should be fun for the guest. Similarly if your brand is about offering a relaxing retreat then looking at your pictures should be relaxing, booking with you should be relaxing and talking to you should be relaxing.

    It goes without saying that staying at the property will have to be SUPER relaxing too. Meaning that the 6 pages of house rules will have to be cut to 3 bullet points with item number 1 being “Relax at least 5 hours per day everyday”. The DO NOT/ RESTRICTED ACCESS signs are long gone and of course the mid stay and after stay cleaning are being taken care of by you, not your guests. You can throw in a massage, a yoga class, a meditation initiation all of which will preferably take place at your vacation rental. Have relaxing music, have mugs with “keep calm and spend the day on the porch” caption, etc. Then your brand will be strong.

    Branding is powerful. I have shared on this blog earlier how last April a guest who was staying at my vacation rental whilst ongoing roadworks took place for…. 6 weeks, not only did she stayed throughout her booking but she booked again in September for April 2016 except that this time she will be staying 3 months! She said that my house and my management style really did gave her the experience of being a local not a tourist and that all the little things and attentions throughout her stay really made her feel at home. Guess what is my brand is? Les Galets, Enjoy Luberon Lifestyle! Luberon being the name of the region where my vacation rental is located.

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