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What is My Hook?


young girl with a baby bird perched on her finger

One of the most popular home types on Airbnb are tree houses. Find a good tree house on this listing website and it will probably be booked at a nice price and maybe even have a waiting list. Obviously, specific types of homes, like tree houses, castles or hobbit homes can be desirable to travelers and command higher prices and more rentals each year.

Unfortunately, most of us have homes that are run-of-the-mill, but we still need to find a way to entice people to rent from us. In many areas there are hundreds, if not thousands, of short term rentals competing for travelers. In order to stick out among the competition your home needs a hook, or a reason for guests to book your house instead of someone else's. Some people might refer to their hook as their "niche."

Proximity

The first thing you need to do when developing your hook is to look at the location of your home to see what you are near. Some hooks are easy due to landmarks or places people naturally would want to stay close to like a great fishing river or even a busy airport. Advertising your proximity and accessibility to these places generally makes very good marketing sense.

Your Property

If you do not have a ready-made location then the next step would be to look around your home and property. Does your home have a pool or a great view of sunsets from a balcony? Even the ability to offer a place for pets can improve your opportunity for bookings.

Imagination

Finally, if you can't seem to find anything to offer as a hook, then you will have to create one. This could be as simple as purchasing a fire pit and offering a spot for people to sit around a fire. When we started our first STR we offered the opportunity for guests to roast marshmallows and picked up several bookings from that.

Minimal Money

Your hook does not have to be expensive. I have seen some people advertise the opportunity to view birds (hummingbirds or a rare or majestic species works well), animals, city views. Although not as good of a hook, you might try a quiet street or quiet corner if your house fits. Many people like privacy.

Need Help?

Go onto Airbnb.com, FlipKey.com and VRBO.com, enter your city in the search bar of each website but don't enter any dates so you will get more representation of what is available in your area. Read the headlines to get ideas of what other people's hooks are. Think about it this way, "Why should someone book with me instead of somewhere else?" Whatever it is that separates you from other people will be your "hook" to draw guests.

Market It

After you have decided on your hook, take a good picture, put it in your headline and market your hook to prospective guests to make your home stand out from the competition.


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