• Vacation rentals can be life-changing. But due to a surge in popularity, the requirements of the job are more challenging than ever. VRMB Communities is a private forum that helps thoughtful owners & managers automate and delegate tasks, so you can focus on the activities that win loyalty and direct bookings. Preview Private Forum Here

Midweek Motivation Crowdsourcing

Crowdsourcing means collecting information from other vacation rental people. It allows you to save time and money while tapping into lessons from owners and managers with different skills or perspectives from all over the world.

Crowdsourcing works best at early, pivotal stages of your vacation rental growth: believe it or not, many other VR pros have been through that challenge before. They may even have a name for it! Crowdsourcing is inversely powerful once you've streamlined. Looking to take that next leap? Need to reinvent (or re-motivate yourself)? Become a thought-leader in your market? When you share an innovation or discovery, you will begin to understand it better!

Let's go through some instances in which crowdsourcing is especially effective:

1. Choose the right tool: There are so many softwares out there today doing so many different things, there's no reason to be the guinea pig. If you know what kind of tool you're looking for, source your crowd to find companies that have been personally vetted. If you don't know whether a tool exists for your needs, source your crowd!

2. Solve the dilemma: In our industry, dilemmas happen all the time with guests, homeowners, employees, neighbors, even that special competitor. Your dilemma is unique. But sourcing input from other VR pros makes your next steps clearer and more defined.

3. Brew your strategy: In our latest workshop Industry Called Home, we explain a seismic shift from operations to strategy. No longer is being operationally efficient the game-changer (that's now table stakes). Now, the game-changer is the differentiating strategy that reflects your authentic self (aka. your Limited Edition brand). As you might imagine, part of this comes from how you view yourself, the other part comes in how others view you. For this latter half, source a crowd of people whose opinions you trust and respect.

The gist of this post is to get you thinking about how to leverage collective wisdom -- always better at predicting the future than even the smartest of us -- at whatever stage of your vacation rental journey. Source your crowd (whoever that may be) the next time you confront a crossroads.

QUESTION
Do you have anything that you'd like to crowdsource here in the community?
Post it below (ANY TOPIC, ANY QUESTION) and if necessary our moderators will take care of moving your post to the right existing discussion!!!

Note: If you are feeling extra crowdsourcey, listen to this interview with Dr. Louis Rosenberg -- the world's leading expert in "Swarm Intelligence" (interviewing him was a dream come true for me).

 
Last edited:

RuthM

Envoy
Inner Circle
I feel like we could easily change the name “Inner Circle” to “Crowdsourcing “! Seriously, tapping into the wisdom of this crowd has been a game changer for me from baby steps in 2018 when I started to today with my own website, direct bookings increasing yearly and so much satisfaction for me and our guests. Thank you crowd for this wisdom!
 

StaySavvy

Counselor
Inner Circle
Accelerator
Author
Thanks for sharing this Matt Landau Matt Landau. Very powerful and very timely. I'm hoping to see industry platforms like Breezeway use this to provide leveraged learning for its users (i.e. there's a plumbing issue at the house, instead of trying to learn how plumbing works and fail 5 times before finding the solution, I can simply look at the 'symptoms' and 'solutions' that other users have had). And definitely going to hit play on this AI podcast :)
 

AshleyK

Counselor
Inner Circle
In the spirit of crowdsourcing, we are really struggling to onboard new owners. Not new properties, new vacation rental owners. Of our 60 properties, 12 have changed hands to new ownership. Nearly all of those new owners have never owned a vacation rental before. This transition has been painful and challenging and I'm struggling to really convey all the various nuances of vacation rental ownership for fear of scaring them away. Here is an example from an email I received yesterday from an owner who was upset that someone from our team showed up to do a weekly vacancy inspection and found him there:
Obviously, I was not expecting to provide a specific date. I took this to put the onus on you to let me know if any bookings come up. I want to level-set that we own the house and you rent it on our behalf. It's not the other way around. So, if I say I might be at the house; you should adjust accordingly. It should not be up to me to let you know that I will be there. You should let me know that you will be.

Any advice on how to best onboard new owners and set reasonable expectations? The above example is certainly one of the worst but l have others who are insisting on unrealistic things like a throw blanket never moving from its designated spot or the lights always being set to 80% dim.

I did use Loom to create a nice video showing how to use the owner portal. I was contemplating creating another one showing how our operations team scheduling and checklists work in Breezeway. But that feels a bit like "how the sausage is made" and I'm not sure it would have the intended effect if it's even watched.
 

StaySavvy

Counselor
Inner Circle
Accelerator
Author
12 have changed hands to new ownership
In my experience, the expectation has to be set as early in the relationship as possible. So if that's when the property is sold (assuming there's a contingency on maintaining the same management company—you), maybe it's a 1-pager, or a few pages, about how you do things that's provided to the RE agent in their new home packet/correspondence? Or an email campaign that starts as soon as they enter your program.

Craig Craig has a great resource for prospective owners that, in a way, sets expectations before they ever come onboard.

but yikes, this sounds like it's already past the point of no return...

The above example is certainly one of the worst
 

Craig

Envoy
Inner Circle
Accelerator
In the spirit of crowdsourcing, we are really struggling to onboard new owners. Not new properties, new vacation rental owners. Of our 60 properties, 12 have changed hands to new ownership. Nearly all of those new owners have never owned a vacation rental before. This transition has been painful and challenging and I'm struggling to really convey all the various nuances of vacation rental ownership for fear of scaring them away. Here is an example from an email I received yesterday from an owner who was upset that someone from our team showed up to do a weekly vacancy inspection and found him there:


Any advice on how to best onboard new owners and set reasonable expectations? The above example is certainly one of the worst but l have others who are insisting on unrealistic things like a throw blanket never moving from its designated spot or the lights always being set to 80% dim.

I did use Loom to create a nice video showing how to use the owner portal. I was contemplating creating another one showing how our operations team scheduling and checklists work in Breezeway. But that feels a bit like "how the sausage is made" and I'm not sure it would have the intended effect if it's even watched.
Hi Ashley, I'm happy to share my pack with you and let you know how I do this.
 

Debi

Ambassador
Inner Circle
Wing Fighter
I feel like our H2H weekly coffees are all about crowd-sourcing. The conversation is always different and always good. I guess, I'm a bit grateful for the pandemic just because we learned how to use zoom and connect with each other more solidly.
 
Top