As summer turns to fall, many vacation rental owners turn to their booking calendars in fear. Hot weather typically means even hotter reservations, but as the peak season comes to pass, the number of bookings begins to decline. Thankfully there’s one weekend in particular that can close out a stellar peak season or help you to reach your end-of-summer sales goals.
Labor day weekend can be the saving grace for many vacation rental owners who didn’t have the numbers they were hoping for at the peak of summer. On the other hand, this holiday can also be an opportunity to mark the changing of seasons as you offer guests some exciting fall stays.
With the holiday fast approaching, how will you make the most of your labor day vacation rental profits?
Why should you run a labor day campaign for your vacation rental?
Let’s start with the simple question of why this holiday is so important in the first place. Beyond its literal significance, many Americans see Labor Day as a representation of changing tides and the final opportunity to soak in the summer. Any good celebration calls for a destination location, right?
If this holiday isn’t a part of your blackout dates, then get ready for it to be a big moneymaker. Labor day weekend is chock full of opportunities for short-term rental owners making it absolutely worth it to put in the effort of running a marketing campaign for Labor Day.
End the peak season strong
Consider your Labor Day campaign as an investment in your bottom line. For most destination-oriented vacation rentals, peak season only comes once a year. Beach bungalows and Florida Key villas need to utilize the final opportunity to profit off of summer sales before bookings become more scarce.
Many children go back to school after the long weekend and adults might be coming off a summer work schedule, making it a true marker for the end of the season. With that in mind, families might be looking to relax before the start of the new year. Family travel and big weekend splurges can provide you the opportunity to really end the peak season strong.
Many travelers to appeal to
Your target audience isn’t just limited to being kid-friendly. Because Labor Day is a national holiday in the U.S., you can choose any number of travel archetypes for your marketing campaign. This is an excellent opportunity to target guests you wouldn’t typically book. If your property normally only books guests that are 50+ you could show off your fun-filled backyard barbeque pit perfect for young professionals looking for a weekend getaway or consider advertising a weekend of romance for staycationing couples.
The extra day off gives you extra opportunities to extend your base to other audiences. If you’ve been looking to diversify your client base to increase bookings, Labor Day weekend will be your perfect chance to do so.
Make extra profits for a holiday rate
Special vacations call for special prices. This weekend has incredibly high demand, meaning you can get away with prices above your typical range. If everyone is looking for the perfect vacation rental to spend the holiday weekend, why not offer your stay at a holiday rate? Most accommodations are going to inflate their prices to meet the higher demand and you should consider doing the same.
Guests aren’t going to push back because they know that inventory will be more expensive for the holiday weekend. You can safely get away with a higher price tag without visitors feeling like you’re offering an unfair price.
Labor Day weekend is a great opportunity to scale up your prices and earn some extra money for the holiday, but dynamic pricing doesn’t need to stop there. Lodgify’s integration with PriceLabs helps you find the perfect rate for your vacation rental regardless of the season.
How to market your vacation rental for Labor Day
So if more money in your pocket and a variety of guests had you sold, it’s time to start devising a plan. It’s not enough to say you want to advertise your vacation rental for Labor Day. You’ve got to act on it too! Marketing can be challenging enough, and marketing for a holiday weekend is even more of a niche skill. Luckily, we’ve got some tips and tricks to share to make your Labor Day marketing efforts more successful this holiday season.
Upload user-generated content from previous years
Trust generates trust. It might sound silly, but seeing that other guests had a good time at your vacation rental during Labor Day in previous years, might be enough to convince them that this is the right spot to spend their own vacation. Guest reviews are always a good idea, but especially during competitive weekends like Labor Day.
Having positive reviews and feedback proves to guests that your property is a great place to stay and not just because you said. The same goes for Labor Day. Demonstrate to prospective guests that your vacation rental is the perfect place to spend their long weekend. “Freebie” long weekends that include an extra day off are few and far between, meaning guests might be a touch more selective than a typical Saturday and Sunday trip. Having testimonials from past years will convince potential travelers to choose your vacation rental for the first weekend of September.
The best performing content is going to be photos and videos. While reviews alone are still useful, having a family photo with kids happily splashing around in the pool or a video recording at the end of the guests’ vacation praising their trip will do wonders for your reservation possibilities.
Offer a long-weekend rate
Labor Day is an opportunity for hosts to make money, but this isn’t exactly a selling point for guests! A higher price tag can be a turn-off, so you have to sell it like they’re getting a good deal. There are a couple of ways you can offer Labor Day deals without them coming out of your pocket.
Have you ever heard of a BOGO? “Buy one, get one” might sound extreme for a vacation rental, but it’s still possible to offer this great deal and make a killer profit. For example, you can tell guests that if they buy one night during Labor Day, they’ll get one night “free” during your off-season. In the fine print, you can include a minimum night stay and also put a maximum price limit for the “free” night. If the rate for your Labor Day weekend is high enough, this could actually earn you both a valuable booking during the holiday and an extra off-season reservation.
Easier yet, you can also include discount codes or percentages off. Just make sure you’ve marked up your price accordingly beforehand, so you still turn a profit for the holiday.
Target family travels
Labor Day is the perfect moment for families to take a vacation. Most parents have some additional days off around this weekend and it’s the last chance for them to get in a summery escape before the school year resumes and the work pace picks back up.
What about your property would be deemed essential or attractive for a family vacation? Do you have any amenities that are perfect for fun? Kids are your best audience, so if you highlight some of your adventure-filled features you’ll attract the audience you’re looking for.
Offering family packages that will appeal to the whole group. If you have any local activities, attractions, or family-style restaurants, this is the perfect opportunity to sell a dream vacation, rather than just the property itself. Turning your vacation rental into an experience is what will really lure in the family audience.
Team up with small businesses
You’re certainly not the only one trying to maximize profits during the holiday weekend. Ads can be pricey to run on your own, but if you partner with the businesses in your area you can share the cost collectively. What local businesses will help “fill in the blanks” for your guests’ vacation? Will they be looking for fine cuisine in the neighborhood, outdoor activities, or a shopping spree to the hometown stores? When you team up with other local businesses, you not only cut down your advertising costs but also help to create a more holistic experience for your guests which makes the Labor Day reservation that much more tempting.
Throw in a labor day freebie
Who doesn’t love a freebie? Especially on their vacation! Stay in line with the theme of the holiday and offer a perk to sweeten the deal for your guests. Depending on the audience, this could be a sweet gift basket with a bottle of wine and local snacks for the romantics or an entertainment pack for families with water guns, pool floaties, or silly, summer-inspired sunglasses. Let your imagination run wild and think of what would be a nice touch and strong selling point for guests.
No gift is too small, so even if it’s a dozen cupcakes with little American flags on top or a full “picnic to go” basket; your guests will love the sentiment. Just make sure you give a sneak peek on your social media platforms or wherever you choose to advertise.
Don’t pass up the opportunity for big profits for your vacation rental during the Labor Day weekend. As many guests get excited to travel during the holiday, you’ll need to prove that your vacation rental is the one worth choosing. The best way to do this is to advertise and market your property accordingly.
Once all the fun and festivities are over, make sure you’re continuing to manage your property wisely with vacation rental software. Lodgify offers automation tools, a robust reservation calendar, and a channel manager that connects with all the major OTAs. Enjoy the Labor Day weekend with a free 7 day trial.