Any vacation rental owner or property manager looking to boost bookings and attract more guests will understand the importance of a marketing strategy — and with that, the role that copywriting plays. Specifically, a vacation rental copywriter can help you create compelling property descriptions and persuasive marketing materials that will entice potential guests and elevate your vacation rental business on Airbnb, Vrbo, Booking.com, and your direct booking site.
In this guide, we’ll discuss the role of a vacation rental copywriter, and the process of finding, hiring, and working effectively with one to achieve the best results for your short-term rental business.
The role of a vacation rental copywriter
Although new technologies like ChatGPT have empowered any property manager’s ability to create written content, skilled vacation rental copywriters can boost a vacation rental business to the next level. So what does a copywriter do?
Seasoned vacation rental copywriters are responsible for crafting engaging content that highlights the unique features and attractions of your vacation rental property. Their words should paint a vivid picture in the minds of potential guests, making them feel excited and eager to book their stay.
Additionally, a copywriter can help optimize your property’s online presence through search engine optimization (SEO) techniques, making it more discoverable by potential guests.
When it comes to vacation rental copywriting, there is much more to it than meets the eye. A copywriter must possess a deep understanding of the vacation rental industry, as well as the ability to create compelling narratives that resonate with potential guests. Let’s explore this more.
How copywriters boost vacation rental bookings
For vacation rental owners, strategic content marketing copy is essential for earning guest trust and bookings across listing sites, social media channels, emails, and websites. Yet crafting quality content requires time and skill. Enlisting a dedicated copywriter can be an effective vacation rental strategy to help property managers maximize online bookings.
These are key ways professional vacation rental copywriters can increase reservations:
- Property descriptions: Perhaps most obviously, vacation rental copywriters can create tantalizing property descriptions highlighting amenities, views, locations, and experiences. Vivid and emotional wording can provide a guest hook, capturing your target audience’s imagination.
- Quality content creation: From creating listing titles optimal for SEO to crafting brand video scripts, copywriters develop the words needed to present a consistent, enticing brand across channels.
- Social media management: Though not restricted to the role of a copywriter, the rental’s social media presence provides a skilled marketing professional an opportunity to showcase lifestyle content, promote special offers, and increase engagement to attract bookings.
- Website copy development: For direct bookings, a copywriter can craft on-brand copy with persuasive sales messaging and seamless booking workflow on a vacation rental website.
- Email & newsletter creation: Copywriters can regularly create email campaigns that nurture subscribers and promote special deals or seasonal packages to help maintain awareness and fill booking vacancies.
- Ad copy: Pay-per-click (PPC) ads and other paid platforms (think podcasts, TV ads, etc.) require compelling ad copy. A copywriter can convey the listing’s uniqueness and value quickly within tight space restraints, specifically targeting your ideal guest.
By assigning an experienced copywriter to handle all marketing content, rental owners benefit from polished and persuasive words purpose-built to drive online conversions and direct bookings.
Key vacation rental copywriter skills
Now that we’ve explored the key responsibilities, let’s discuss the skills and qualifications you should look for when hiring a vacation rental copywriter.
- Excellent writing skills: A professional copywriter should have exceptional writing skills, including grammar, spelling, punctuation, and formatting. Their writing should be engaging, persuasive, and error-free. They should have the ability to create content that captivates readers and compels them to take action.
- Portfolio and experience: When evaluating copywriter candidates, ask to see their portfolio of previous work, particularly any related to the vacation rental industry. Additionally, consider their years of experience in the field, as it can indicate their level of expertise.
- SEO research expertise: In order to optimize your vacation rental listing for search engines, a copywriter should have a strong understanding of SEO. This includes identifying relevant keywords and incorporating them strategically into your content. By conducting thorough keyword research, a copywriter can ensure that your property is easily discoverable by potential guests.
- Effective vacation rental marketing writing: A copywriter should be able to create persuasive marketing materials such as property brochures, email newsletters, and social media posts. These materials should compel potential guests to choose your vacation rental over others. Through carefully crafted messaging, a copywriter can tap into the desires and aspirations of your target audience, ultimately driving bookings and revenue.
- Familiarity with vacation rentals: Look for a copywriter who is familiar with the vacation rental industry. They should understand its unique dynamics, target audience, and best practices. This industry knowledge will enable them to craft content that resonates with potential guests and effectively showcases the value of your property.
- Adaptability across booking sites and platforms: A skilled vacation rental copywriter will be familiar with various booking platforms and online travel agencies. They should have experience adapting their writing style and tone to suit the specific platform they are working on. Whether it’s a listing on Airbnb, another OTA, or a dedicated vacation rental website, a copywriter should be able to tailor their content to maximize its impact on each platform.
Now that you know what to look for in a vacation rental copywriter, let’s move on to the hiring process and where to find qualified candidates.
The copywriter hiring process
When embarking on the journey of hiring a vacation rental copywriter, it’s essential to find qualified candidates who are the right fit for your business. Here are some tips on where to find potential copywriters and how to evaluate them during the hiring process.
Where to find qualified candidates
- Freelance websites: Platforms like Upwork, Freelancer, and Fiverr connect businesses with freelancers from around the world. These websites often have copywriters with experience in vacation rentals and provide reviews and ratings to help you make an informed decision.
- Professional writing associations: Organizations like the American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA) or the Professional Writers Association of Canada (PWAC) can provide access to directories of professional copywriters who specialize in various industries, including vacation rentals.
- Referrals and recommendations: Reach out to fellow vacation rental owners or industry professionals for recommendations. Personal referrals can provide valuable insights and references you can trust. Networking within the vacation rental community can be a valuable resource for finding qualified copywriters.
- Industry networking: Attend industry conferences, join online forums and groups, and connect with other vacation rental owners and managers. They may be able to recommend copywriters they have worked with in the past or point you in the direction of relevant resources.
Interview questions to ask
Once you have a list of potential candidates, it’s time to evaluate them through an interview process. Here are a few critical questions to help you gauge a potential hire.
- Can you tell me about your previous experience with vacation rental copywriting?
- How do you approach keyword research and ensure effective SEO optimization?
- How would you adapt your writing style to suit different vacation rental platforms, such as Airbnb or HomeAway?
- Can you provide examples of persuasive marketing materials you’ve created for vacation rentals?
Remember to ask for writing samples and request references to corroborate the candidate’s skills and professionalism.
Determining your vacation rental copywriter budget
Now that you’ve found potential copywriters and have a better understanding of their qualifications, it’s time to determine your budget for hiring a vacation rental copywriter. Several factors can influence the rates charged by copywriters, so let’s explore these before discussing how to negotiate a fair price.
Factors influencing copywriter rates
- Experience and expertise: Copywriters with more experience and specialized knowledge may charge higher rates.
- Project scope: The complexity and size of your project can affect the time and effort required by the copywriter, which in turn can influence the rates quoted.
- Deadline and timeline: If you have tight deadlines or require a quick turnaround, copywriters may charge higher rates to accommodate the urgency.
Negotiating a fair price
When entering into negotiations with a copywriter, remember that their work is an investment in your business’s success. Be willing to discuss your budget openly, but also be realistic about the market rates for copywriting services. Consider the value that a well-written vacation rental description can bring to your bookings and adjust your budget accordingly.
It’s important to strike a balance between your budget constraints and the copywriter’s expertise, quality of work, and expectations. By communicating openly, you can hopefully find a fair price that works for both parties.
Working effectively with your vacation rental copywriter
Congratulations! You’ve hired a vacation rental copywriter who aligns with your goals and budget. Now, it’s time to ensure a smooth working relationship and achieve the best possible results. Communication and expectation-setting play a crucial role in working effectively with your copywriter.
Setting clear expectations
At the beginning of the project, clearly communicate your expectations to the copywriter. Provide them with a detailed brief that includes information about your vacation rental, target audience, and desired tone of voice. Share any specific requirements or guidelines that should be followed, such as character limits or mandatory inclusions. This clarity will help the copywriter understand your vision and deliver content that meets your expectations.
Furthermore, establish a timeline for deliverables and agree upon milestones to keep the project on track. Regular check-ins and updates can help ensure that everyone stays aligned and any questions or concerns are addressed promptly.
Establishing a smooth communication flow
Effective communication is key to a successful working relationship with your vacation rental copywriter. Establish clear channels of communication, whether it’s through email, phone calls, or project management tools. Be responsive to their inquiries and provide feedback in a timely manner.
Encourage your copywriter to ask questions if something is unclear, and provide constructive feedback on their work. Remember, open and respectful communication fosters collaboration and helps create the best possible content for your vacation rental.
Evaluating your vacation rental copywriter’s performance
Once your vacation rental copywriter has completed their work, it’s essential to evaluate their performance and measure the impact of their content. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) can provide valuable insights into the effectiveness of the copy and help you identify areas for improvement.
- Conversion rate: Track the percentage of website visitors who book a stay after engaging with your website content and reading the copy. An increase in conversions indicates the persuasive power of the copy.
- Click-through rate: If you use clickable ads or email marketing, measure the percentage of recipients who click on the provided link. A higher click-through rate suggests that the copy effectively captures attention and generates interest.
- Time on page: Analyze how long visitors spend on your vacation rental page. Engaging copy should keep potential guests interested, resulting in longer average time on page metrics.
When evaluating the performance of your vacation rental copywriter, it’s important to provide feedback that is constructive and actionable. Schedule a meeting or call to discuss your observations and share specific examples or suggestions for improvement. Highlight what worked well and acknowledge the copywriter’s achievements, but also address any areas where adjustments or revisions may be needed.
Approach feedback as a collaborative process, focusing on fostering growth and optimizing the copy to achieve the desired results. Encourage the copywriter to share their insights and ideas, as their expertise can enhance your marketing efforts.
Hiring a vacation rental copywriter can significantly impact your bookings and enhance your property’s online presence. The key to success is finding a copywriter who aligns with your business’s unique voice and goals and establishing a collaborative relationship based on open communication and shared expectations. Choose wisely, and reap the rewards of engaging, conversion-driven persuasive messaging that sets your vacation rental apart from the competition. By understanding the role and responsibilities of professional copywriters, knowing where to find qualified candidates, setting a fair budget, and working effectively with your chosen copywriter, you can elevate your vacation rental marketing strategy to new heights.