According to predictions made by Pieter Levels, by the year 2035, there will be nine billion people on earth. Of these nine billion, six billion will be of working age – and around half of these will be freelancers.
Levels also estimated that one-third of these freelancers will be digital nomads. That means we’re looking at one billion remote workers in the next two decades (or sooner!).
What is a digital nomad?
As Wikipedia puts it, digital nomads are a “type of people who use telecommunications technologies to earn a living and, more generally, conduct their life in a nomadic manner”.
They’re a growing sector of the working population who, due to the flexibility of the role they carry out on a day-to-day basis, can perform their work from anywhere around the globe with little more than a working internet connection.
Identify digital nomads’ needs
The very nature of being location independent – that is, able to work without an office or much equipment – means that there are few requirements for digital nomads. Let’s take a look at the top ways you can attract this alternative type of business traveler to your vacation rental.
Have the right amenities
First things first, in order to attract remote workers to your rental, the amenities you provide are key. Digital nomads will spend a lot more time at your property than regular travelers as they will likely fulfill their working obligations at home, too.
That’s why a variety of clean and comfortable workspaces, fast Wi-Fi and home-from-home comforts such as fluffy towels and a stocked pantry are all must-haves. The remote workforce will probably have different working hours than regular 9-to-5 jobs, so offer numerous spots around your home where they can set up their workstation without missing out on daylight!
Promote off-season deals for longer stays
Many digital nomads decide their next destination the same day they leave the previous one. Others, however, will plan in advance where is best to spend summer, winter and so on. If your property fails to attract guests at certain times of the year, you could use this opportunity to offer irresistible discounts for long-term visits. That way, your property won’t be vacant in the low season, and a remote worker may just fall in love with your area!
Showcase attractive spots nearby
Part of the appeal of being able to work from anywhere is the freedom of deciding how to divide up the day. For this demographic, it’s not just the accommodation that makes a place worth visiting. Cool coffee houses, independent shopping and trendy yoga studios are also part and parcel of the digital nomad lifestyle. That said, if your home boasts a great view, private pool or any other unique feature that will catch a guest’s eye – be sure to highlight it on your homepage, along with any local attractions that will help seal the deal.
Advertise in Facebook groups
There are hundreds of groups on Facebook brimming with thousands of like-minded professionals who all work remotely or want to. One of the main ways they find out about opportunities or ask for advice? You guessed it – Facebook.
The social network is, therefore, a great place to advertise your vacation rental if you’re looking to attract online freelancers to your property. Always be sure to direct them on to your vacation rental website to make their booking securely.
Partner with a coworking space
Coworking spaces have also gained a lot of popularity in recent years, not only due to being a good match for remote workers’ flexible careers, but also the opportunities for networking and community building they provide.
Many entrepreneurs seeking out a new location for their next gig will peruse the coworking options available to them before making their decision. Because of this, consider striking up a partnership with a local coworking space and place a small advert on their website or in-house notice board. This will help attract members of this demographic to your home – as they’re either already situated in your area, or looking to stay there.
Accept last-minute bookings
Location independent workers are a savvy bunch – and they will probably attempt to negotiate the best deal with property owners. By accepting last-minute bookings, you open up your property for a bidding war between competitive travelers. Ensure that potential guests have a way of contacting you directly (i.e. through your own website) as this will allow them to start a conversation. Last-minute bookings are a great way to fill those awkward-length calendar gaps left by other guests who arrive and depart on weekends.
The number of digital nomads is set to increase dramatically in the near future, so it’s a great time to start thinking about how to expand your target guest market and include this sector of the population. Follow the tips above to market your vacation rental to the growing remote workforce!