How To Optimize Social Media For Vacation Rentals

Instagram, Facebook, and even TikTok are powerful marketing tools for vacation rental owners. Use these tools to create a network of engaged followers who are eager to travel to your destination.

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Social media marketing is a key tactic for building a successful, long-term vacation rental marketing strategy that gets more traffic to your book direct website and new eyeballs on your listings on Airbnb, VRBO, and other listing sites.

But, it isn’t always easy and many hosts and managers get bogged down with other details. The next thing you know, you look up and notice you haven’t posted anything in weeks, your content is outdated and your next post will get no engagement because… your followers have forgotten all about you.

Instagram, Facebook, and even TikTok are powerful marketing tools for vacation rental owners. Using these tools to create a network of engaged followers who are eager to travel to your destination will take time and effort. If done right, the content you post will create connections and build anticipation to stay in your vacation rental! When your followers are ready to book direct, your interaction with them will keep your vacation rental fresh in their minds.

The first step toward a winning social media strategy for your vacation rental is optimizing your accounts. Start today and do a little bit each day and you’ll have your Facebook and Instagram accounts ready to grow and build connections.

If you are ready to invest a little time for big returns, let’s dive in!

How To Optimize Your Social Media For Vacation Rentals

Every year or seasonally you should take a couple of hours to look at your account from your follower’s perspective and spend time auditing your content and updating your pages.

First, start with your bio, profile images, and other key details.

Your profile and bio should be a description based on what you offer your target audience. Why should someone follow you for the long term? What do you provide them that is worth their time and interest? Do you share beautiful photos of your destination? Tips about things to do? Travel tips? Sharing content from other tourism businesses and restaurants? Or, are you simply just sharing details about your property in hopes of booking? This is key to building your vacation rental marketing strategy.

Your bio area (called profile on Instagram and “about” on Facebook) is a key piece of real estate that you should use to tell your brand story AND what is important for your followers to know about you from their perspective. Social media is all about giving more than what you ask for, so let your followers know what you will give them in exchange for their attention.

You also want to be sure you clearly relay key contact information such as:

  • Your website address
  • Email address
  • Phone number

Refresh Your Vacation Rental Facebook Page

Tip #1: Update and add photos

  • Update your cover photo to show off a new season (update every 3 months). Be sure your cover photo shares the best shot of your property or destination. Use Canva templates to help and look at what others are doing. Don’t keep the same cover photo on your page year-round.
  • Add a Facebook photo album for each property. Add photos and describe them. Tag your destination (not your property address) in a few of them.

Tip #2: Update your content

  • Update your “About Section” with a one-paragraph description of the guest’s experience at your property.
  • Be sure you have a link to your website’s booking page, phone number, and other social media handles.
  • Set up Facebook Messenger with a friendly greeting and answers to common questions with links back to your website.
  • Use your personal profile to market your business page. Add yourself as the owner of your business which creates a link back to your Facebook business page. You can also link your website and other social media handles here.
  • Create a plan for what you will post this week and next week. Try to plan for at least 4 posts this week – 3 about your destination and 1 about your property.

Refresh Your Vacation Rental Instagram

Tip #1: Check Your Bio

  • Write a bio that reflects why people should follow you and isn’t focused on bookings.
  • Change your profile photo to a property or destination photo (not a logo) Use a photo of yourself in front of your rental if possible (close up).
  • Make sure your name – the @ name – reflects your business. This is a searchable field.
  • Make sure your user name is NOT the same as your @ handle. This field is searchable too.
  • Add your business category (vacation rental).
  • Change to a business account or creator account.
  • Add a link to your website – or better, use a landing page link like link-in-bio or Milkshake

Tip #2: Check Your Content

  • Create branded story highlight covers for each property.
  • Ensure your top 9 images have a consistent look and feel. If not, add them over the next 4 days.
  • Can you read your text graphics? If not, start using less text in the images.
  • Make sure the tone of your captions is friendly and inspiring or provide information about your area.
  • Make a list of hashtags to use and vary them often.
  • Vary your content – posts, stories, and videos. Create your first guide!

Tip #3: Check Your Engagement

  • Check your engagement rate. Take an average of likes and comments from your previous 10 posts and divide that by the number of followers you have. You should have an engagement rate of about 5% if you have less than 10,000 followers.
  • Invite followers to take action in your captions (DM me for more, double tap if you love sunsets, comment below, etc.).
  • Follow influencers, local businesses, and local tourism accounts. Like and comment on their photos often.
  • Share other people’s photos in your stories. This helps build connections. Share local businesses, influencers, and previous guests or people you are trying to nurture into becoming a guest.
  • Reply to all DM’s (except obvious spam).
  • Follow hashtags your target market might be using and comment and like photos in the hashtag stream.

How To Grow Your Vacation Rental Social Media Following

Your target market IS using social media to find their next vacation destination and you need to be there too! Not only should you show up by posting photos, but using tools like stories, reels, IGTV, guides, and hashtags are all great ways to market to your target audience and increase your exposure and following.

Building your network takes time, but if you are thoughtful about the content you share, genuine in the way you interact with your followers, and reach out to people who like, comment, and follow you, you will have a steady growth of people who are actually interested in you, inspired by your photos and will book direct.

Want to get more in-depth with your social media marketing? Download my free Instagram Action Plan.

Last Thoughts About Your Vacation Rental Social Media Strategy

Simple updates to your accounts give your target audience a taste of your destination which in turn gives them a reason to want to book with you! Each touchpoint on your Facebook page or Instagram should be intentional, should build trust, and eventually lead your followers to book and recommend your properties to their friends and network.

You need to be clear on the content you are providing and make and keep a regular schedule. There are plenty of planning tools you can use to set up social media marketing systems that work for you. If you need help planning your content check out my Instagram Action Plan for free or purchase the 365 Social Media Suitcase for content prompts, templates, and more.

Check out the Social Media Suitcase.

  • Fill in the blank and AI prompts and inspiration for captions, stories, reels, TikToks, Instagram carousels etc.
  • Monthly planning calendar with holidays and recognition days
  • Daily inspiration for what to post and share on social media
  • Video lessons on social media marketing
  • Canva templates

Click here to get the Social Media Suitcase!

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