Sometimes during the scheduling and time-consuming coordination of renting your properties, you miss key opportunities to increase your revenue based on what’s going on in your city. For example, renting a property in London during the Summer Olympics was better than hitting the lotto, but many London renters forgot about the London Design Festival that took place only a few weeks later. While it’s a much smaller event, people travelled from all over the world to attend and, of course, needed a place to stay. Staying updated to the event calendar in your city is a great way to increase your rental business.
First, make it a priority to find out what’s going on in your city. Here are some great places to start:
- Check out the visitor’s bureau in your city. In big cities, this could also be a convention and visitors bureau (CVB). They typically maintain a list of major events and conferences in your area.
- Review local event directories such as Eventful.
- Subscribe to your local newspapers and magazines.
- Set a Google alert to get notified by email when new items are published to the web, like press releases and cultural events.
- Connect with your local entertainment centers, theaters, and concert venues to stay updated on their calendars.
- Follow local event companies on Facebook, Twitter, or Plancast .
Then, you need to decide how much you can charge for your place. Typically, start with the competition and see where you stack up. Check Airbnb, Flipkey, Homeaway, Craigslist, and any others popular in your area for local prices. Consider your location, parking availability, public transportation, and the size of your place when setting your rate. Don’t get carried away though as you want to price yourself out of the market.
Now, it’s time to start promoting your rental. In addition to your usual channels, it’s important to utilize lesser used avenues that become popular when people head to an event. For example, check out local newspaper ads and the classified section to post your listing.
Call the event organizers and find out where they are advertising. If possible, try and secure a small ad for your place alongside the event promotion. For the extra savy or attention grabbers, you can even involve the local press to include your place in their news coverage leading up to the event.
Lastly, don’t forget your own social network. So many people forget to promote their properties to their friends and acquaintances on Facebook and Twitter. It’s a great source for traffic as people are more likely to make a booking after a referral from a trusted source.