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Blogging is a great way to stay in touch with your guests and cultivate potential renters who chance upon your website.
In a mere 500 words or less, you can celebrate the glories of your area, update readers on what's happened since their last visit and quietly remind guests and newcomers alike of the thoughtful hospitality your vacation rental business pro-vides.
Not sure what you want to blog about? These six subjects should reel in readers.
As a knowledgable local, you know about the terrific fish restaurant that replaced the run-down diner, the wonderfully chewy brownies invented by the local bakery and the new hiking trail that's scenic and challenging. Introduce readers to new businesses and attractions, interview the proprietors, and take pictures. You'll give new and return guests a heads up about what to look for when they hit town. You may even entice someone who's on the fence to rent a house.
Is the town librarian a gifted local historian? Is the coffee shop celebrating its 10th year in business? Did a grizzled member of band at the corner bar once play back-up for Springsteen? Smart, short interviews with local notables make great read-ing, usher readers into the community and can help guests plan their stay.
Pair a photo with an informative caption and you've got an instant blog post, an eloquent reminder of what your area offers and your vacation rental business. If you're not sure about your picture-taking and photoshopping skills, take a course. Photos with a polished touch make your business look professional.
4. Celebrate the seasons
The seasons are a non-stop way of showing off your area's beauty, versatility and charm. They're also the perfect excuse for touching base with readers. A seasonal recipe for pumpkin bread from the town bakery or the local bartender's new holi-day drinks menu complete with advice on making mulled wine is a recipe for a useful and memorable blog post. Or herald the seasons with a single photo or pho-to essay (see 3). A romantic look at your sleepy beach town in the dead of winter, brightly colored autumn leaves cascading over the town's farmers market, chil-dren building sand castles on a hot summer's day — click away.
Think about what makes your area famous, be it fresh lobster, craft beer or pow-dery ski slopes, and do a post on alternative choices for guests eager to try some-thing different. Noting that visitors to the Maryland Shore indulge in crab cakes, a local specialty, Debbie Lipscomb, co-founder of Eastern Shore Vacation Rentals, did a blog on where to get pizza. "We've got great pizza places for when people get tired of crab cakes," she says.
Is a member of your staff a yoga teacher, an avid hiker or someone who spends every spare minute exploring the area on a bicycle? Ask them to write a first-person guest blog about their local specialty. Guests will be happy to know your business's local expertise runs deep.