Marketing Ideas for Holiday Rentals in Provence Côte d’Azur
Do you own a holiday rental property (apartment, self-catered cottage, villa, village house, boutique hotel) in Provence or the Côte d’Azur? This article summarises a presentation given to holiday rental owners in the South of France in January 2022. We hope that you find some nuggets of helpful information when determining marketing partners and your overall strategy.
French Holiday Rentals
Customs and terminology can be confusing in any foreign country, and France is no exception. North Americans and other international travellers might not understand (or search for) terms like gîte, mazet, chambres d’hôtes, or hôtel de charme. However, if your website is multi-lingual, English terms are commonly used in Internet searches:
Small self-catered rental cottages = Gîte or Mazet
Bed and Breakfast (B&B) = Chambres d’hôtes
Villa = Maison privée
Village house = Maison du village
Boutique hotel = Hôtel de charme
Accommodation Search Platforms
Hundreds, if not thousands, of companies have platforms that allow travellers to search for accommodation with budget, geography and size filters. Some sites cover various accommodation types and geographical areas, while others concentrate on a specific niche.
Choosing a marketing partner is a critical decision for holiday accommodation owners. Your decision impacts visibility and budget. In addition, the platform(s) you choose depends on the audience you want to attract.
Here are some questions to ask:
- As a property owner, what are your goals? (Financial, hobby, property investment)
- Who is your target audience? (Families, solo travellers, couples)
- Are you reaching the right audience with your marketing strategy?
- Are you winding down your business to sell or trying to grow it?
- Does your property get lost in the search engines?
Reaching Your Audience
Look at your website and social media profiles. Do they reflect what you are offering to guests? Depending on the demographics of the ideal client should dictate your approach to marketing, social media, and listing platforms. For example, older clients are less frequent social media users. Consider using a combination of these methods listed below.
Social Media: Tends to reach a younger demographic and supports your website presence. How much referral business are you getting from social media? If your target audience isn’t there, don’t spend hours on social media. Also, the algorithms are constantly changing, so what worked last year might no longer attract the same audience.
Tourism Offices: Provide printed brochures work for last-minute bookings. These websites are suitable for search if the links work.
Real Estate Agencies: Consider how are they juggling your property in their priorities?
Booking Engines: Review how search works on these platforms. Look at your geography/ type of offering.
Make it a practice to review your website at least once a year.
- Check that all the website links are valid
- Is the content up to date?
- Make sure your email is correct.
- Do you have a contact form, and is it working?
- Are your policies (cancellation, payment, booking) updated and easy to find?
- Do you have a COVID policy?
Fees and Flexibility
Large booking engines charge a per-transaction fee. However, some sites have options for paid boosting.
Real Estate agencies and travel agents charge a commission on each transaction. However, other sites such as Perfectly Provence charge a flat annual rate, a simple and financially controllable method.
- What can you afford?
- What method gives you the best visibility?
The answer is likely a combination of methods.
Selecting a Marketing Partner
Selecting partner(s) depends on your target audience – geography, demographic,
Review how the marketing platform works with listing clients and determine if this fits your needs?
- Are properties part of an extensive search database?
- Does the partner promote via social media/newsletters/ website content?
- Is the website attractive?
- How do similar properties appear on the website?
- Choose a strategy and tweak it, don’t keep switching methodology as you risk getting “lost” in the void.
Our approach at Perfectly Provence is creative collaboration to promote your business. So whether your work is in holiday accommodation, small-group tours, artistic pursuits, photography, food & wine, artisan products, real estate, concierge services, or property management, we can help. We tell the story and share it via our prequalified channels. Our readers and followers are self-selected Francophiles who already know or want to get to know Provence.
They want to feel safe!
Quick response to emails and requests
Some Ability to cook for themselves
Many international travellers do not speak French
Plan ahead! International travellers book their holidays well in advance. Don’t wait until you have gaps in your bookings or cancellations. Perfectly Provence is a marketing partner that works collaboratively to showcase business in the region, including but not exclusively holiday accommodation. We work with small tour companies, artisan producers, artists, vineyards and much more.