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Extra Clever

Even if you’ve done everything right when setting up your listing, it never hurts to go the extra mile to ensure that it’s being seen by the right people.  Sometimes it’s the little creative things you do that help your listing stand apart from the others.  Here are 5 extra clever ways to get your listing seen by potential guests.

1.  Create a Unique URL

When sharing content online, we’ve become trained to create special trackable and shortened URLs that fit nicely within character limits and just look cleaner to the eye.  Sure you could create a shortened bit.ly link to track the number of clicks your listing is getting when you share it via social media but why not take the extra step and create its own unique vanity URL.  Let’s look at an example that I created.  My apartment lies in the Mission District of San Francisco.  Therefore I went to a domain registry site (I used Domain.com, but HostGator or GoDaddy are also viable options) and registered the URL www.missionapartment.com.  Once I owned that domain name I was able to setup a redirect in order to forward the URL to my standard Airbnb listing page.  Super easy, takes no more than 15 minutes!  Now you have a clean URL that you can share with people rather than the long complicated www.airbnb.com/123456 that you had before!

2.  Create Business Cards or Physical Flyers

Now that you have a unique URL for your listing you can share this wherever you’d like.  One clever way to get the listing seen is to print it up on business cards.  Many services like VistaPrint even offer free business cards.  These could be as simple as the URL, maybe your phone number, and a line from your description to entice visitors.  What you do with these is up to you, but you could pass them out to friends, take them to meet ups or conferences where this it potential to meet out-of-town visitors.  Use your imagination and come up with clever places for your cards to be seen.  You may also want to take this a step further and print flyers, postcards, or other materials to promote your space.

3.  Be Active In Airbnb Groups

Airbnb has launched its “Groups” feature as a way for fellow hosts to communicate on a variety of issues.  While there are many benefits to this, we’ll stick to the topic at hand.  By communication with fellow hosts you establish a sense of credibility.  If a neighborhood host has multiple bookings or can’t meet the demand, they may look to you to help.  By being active in the community you generate more awareness of how wonderful your space is, and the more likely you are to garner interest from group members.

4.  Talk about it in Real Life

Because so much of the Airbnb experience happens online, we often forget how powerful face-to-face communication can be.  I’ve always spoken about my Airbnb hosting experiences with pride.  When family or friends ask that dreaded question “what’s new?” be ready to share some tidbits about your latest hosting experience!  In many cases, the person may not have ever heard about Airbnb and will be eager to learn more.  By making this connection you’re creating the possibility that this person will share this with their friends, and at some point one of these conversations may lead to a new booking!

5.  Ask Guests To Tell Their Friends

The review process is vital to your success on Airbnb but some guests may be willing to take things a step further.  When leaving a review of your guest you have the option of leaving a message solely for them to see.  This is a wonderful opportunity!  Yes you should give them the sincere praise for being a good guest, but now is also the time to extend an open invitation.  Tell them that they are welcome back at your place at any time.  And even better, tell them to share their experiences with any friends who may need a place to stay in your city.  You’d be surprised at how powerful an in-person review by a close friend can really be.

These are just a few of the more creative ways to get your listing seen.  Any others that have worked for you?

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/21560098@N06/6700017521/

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