It is important in any type of marketing to know exactly to whom you are marketing your content. However, “content” can encompass many different things — and in the vacation rental management industry, it is your services. But how do you promote your services to precisely the right audience? Jodi Taylor Refosco of Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations & Sales says it’s all about segmenting and targeting ownership through triggered emails.
“It is important to communicate with potential owners based on their specific needs and where they are in the decision-making process,” Refosco said. “To create our segments, we identify the reason a potential owner is inquiring about our management services, and we create personas based on [those reasons].”
From those personas, Refosco says she breaks it down even further by looking at individual levels of engagement.
“My triggered emails keep the conversation going in a way that is automated yet personalized with information that is relevant to their needs,” Refosco said. “For example, an owner that has been renting with a competitor for years may not need to know the basics of being an owner of a vacation rental home. That gives me time to focus on more projects and talk more with potential owners.”
By sending out frequent and relevant emails tailored to a specific audience, Refosco says she is able to stay at the top-of-mind when her contacts are looking to select a management company. The helpful tips and personalized touches her segmented and targeted emails allow help establish her company as “experts” in the industry, she says.
This strategy has endless value according to Refosco. By setting up pre-determined emails and keeping tabs on her various audiences, Refosco is able to connect with even more new owners reaching out. “While automating the process in [segmenting and targeting ownership] is key, I always keep in mind that every owner is different,” she said. “When needed, content is fine-tuned and customized.”
In fact, the value this strategy has will outweigh any potential challenges. Refosco says the only thing she could see possibly impacting this strategy is online shopping for a vacation rental manager. “If a prospect goes directly online as opposed to calling, it is important that the information they need to make a decision is easily searchable and available on our website,” she said. However, this strategy is still good to keep in mind, and in place, as nearly 73 percent of those who check their email via phone will open said email as soon as it arrives; 54 percent of desktop-only users will open an email as soon as it arrives.
To implement a segmenting/targeting ownership strategy within your own company, Refosco encourages managers know their own strengths — but also know your competitors. By following and tracking your industry competition, you’ll have a leg-up on what to offer and be able to answer the question of, “Why is what you offer better than competitor X?” Simply knowing your audience and adhering to their needs allows you the ability to be exactly what each segment needs.