The Book Direct Show 2021
There are many approaches to attracting bookings, and being inclusive
Read our presentation notes.
- The Book Direct Show 2021 was held at the Tobacco Docks in London
- Experts advised how to attract direct bookings
- Bookster joined in the panel discussion on Embracing Inclusivity
- Consider visual and written evidence that you are welcoming to all bookers
- Review images for how people are represented
- Floorplans demonstrate how your property meets peoples physical needs.
Airbnb, Booking.com, Direct bookings and more - Bookster helps you attract bookings.Attract Bookings with Bookster…
You’d be surprised the number of properties that advertise as family-friendly ground floor, but negate to mention the 5 steps at the entrance.
What did Bookster cover at The Book Direct Show 2021?
On 13 September The Book Direct Show 2021 took place in London and Bookster was there!
We were delighted to be asked to join in the panel discussion. This panel covered experiences and recommendations for supporting the inclusivity of the industry.
Being inclusive is an important strategy to welcome more guests and attract bookings to your holiday lets, whilst improving your visitor experiences.
Our favourite question was this:
How can we make our website imagery more appealing to more bookers?
The main takeaway is that the people on your website will be consciously and unconsciously looking for visual and written clues that they will be welcomed.
Imagery includes property photos, people, logos and badges, videos, maps, floorplans.
One way to demonstrate that guests are welcome, is to display a wider variety of people to reflect society as a whole.
For those that don’t know this, when we reviewed the images in Bookster, it was quite clear that our website did not reflect the great variety of the human race and who we were as a company. But now you’ll see that in our images.
Look at images, and reflect on whether they are welcoming to all people.
There are truly inclusive companies outside of our industry. Check out Dove, CocaCola, Apple for diverse imagery.
Within our vacation rental industry, try Airbnb.
How to use the tools you have
For floorplans, property photos, maps and videos, consider using these tools to provide more than just a beautifully shot space.
- Covid showed us that we are able to use photos to express cleaning protocols, do the same.
- If there are stairs to the property, bathroom, terrace etc, take a photo of them.
- If there are different bathroom facilities on each floor, demonstrate that in the floor plan.
- Add door widths into floor plans.
As a mother of 2, you’d be surprised the number of properties that advertise as family-friendly ground floor, but negate to mention the 5 steps at the entrance.
Or 5th floor with a lift, but don’t demonstrate the lift size.
It can have a massive effect on a guest's stay.
So think about what your guests may need, and put these into your imagery to show them that they are considered and welcomed, and give sufficient information so they can make decisions themselves."
This is part of our inclusivity project designed to ensure our business and services support our ethos to support individuals no matter of age, race/ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, background, or ability.
We were joined in this discussion by:
- Carlos Villaro-Lassen, Secretary General, European Holiday Home Association (EHHA)
- Mike Ortegon, Vacation Rental Advisor and VRMA Board Member
- Srin Madipalli, Developer and Entrepreneur
Main takeaways from expert speakers at the Book Direct Show
Louise Brace, Rental Tonic: Think about the guests you really want, and write with them in mind. This will help you understand their needs, and how you can meet those needs.
Marva Cifuentes, Flying Cat Marketing: Select your most important keywords. Then dominate them by creating different articles using different variations of those keyword combined with other words. Eg. Holiday rentals in Kent by the beach, holiday rentals in Kent by the coast, holiday rentals in Kent for families, holiday rentals in Kent with dogs.
Neely Khan, Neely There: Don't 'we' all over the web. Make your client the heart of your story.
Mark Simpson, Boostly: To increase visibility and bookings, ask your friends, family, guests and contacts the question "Do you know anyone..." who may be interested in staying in your property.
Elaine Watt, Holiday Let Success: Become the go-to person in your local area, trusted and knowledgeable by the community, so enquiries about holiday rentals are passed to you.
Sarah Orchard, Get-Fully-Booked.com: Make a plan for your social media content, and follow that plan to effectively communicate with potential guests. This will ensure that you always have something to say and that it is working to its best effect.
Sarah Riley, Inspired Courses: Identify opportunities for your holiday rental to be covered in the press. Two options are:
- Consider how your property or the location is special and speak with journalists who focus on individual properties.
- Watch for activities by celebrities and identify how that fits with your area, property or industry.
What is The Book Direct Show 2021?
This annual event brought together hoteliers, short-term rental managers and serviced accommodation providers with one goal: Generate more direct bookings.
The show blended online and live presentations, with an online series running 2 x daily sessions from 1 to 10 September 2021.
The live event took place on 13 September with a selection of speakers from across the industry.
The speakers' covered strategies and insights on how property managers can attract more direct bookings to holiday let businesses: no sales pitches, just educational content.
How does Bookster support Direct Bookings?
Bookster provides tools and services for professional holiday rental managers and owners.
This includes tools to help you attract bookings through channels like Booking.com, Airbnb etc, as well as through your own website.
Over the years we have built specialist skills within the team, and are passionate about applying this to help build profitable bookings!
We focused on supporting you in your goal to attract more bookings through your own website (direct bookings).
- Custom websites, built to your specification, with our technical knowledge
- Template websites, ready-made websites, designed for fast conversion from user to guest
- Search Engine Optimisation services (SEO), increasing your position in the rankings in search engines like Google
- Book Direct Toolkit, a number of built-in tools to manage and oversee direct bookings on your website
- A Rental Market Summary, providing hard and fast statistics and facts on the market trends and competition in your area
- Email Marketing suite, helping you automatically contact your guests to build strong relationships
- and more.
How can you get involved?
The Book Direct Show 2021 was a blended online and offline event, so you could get involved from your own space.
Simply visit the Book Direct Show website, to find out more about future events.