Survey Asked: How do we get people to open up B and B’s?

In our survey of Rural Challenges in 2017 we received many results, and many questions. One of them was ‘how do we get people to open B and B’s?’

Small towns often have great natural resources, events and activities and many reasons to visit. However, they don’t always have hotels, motels, B and B’s – accommodations.

You might be surprised that people are already providing a place to stay!

I think you’d be pleasantly surprised if you search www.airbnb.com for your area. There ARE people who are doing short term rentals in your area. One of the problems I see, is they aren’t letting the locals know. Posting on the site is important, and sharing on tourism sites helps as well. But what about the locals?

When the holidays role around, do you know people who need a place for family to stay? How do you reach those people?

My friend Maureen owns a building with a first floor apartment available. She has listed it in the usual spots:

  • Airbnb
  • VRBO
  • Facebook Page
  • Instagram

She was finding that people still didn’t realize it was available.

She’s using her local resources!

  • The Chamber of Commerce is having a ribbon cutting. It is part of her business after all.
  • She’s visiting with the larger manufacturers who have visitors often. More and more people like staying in a place where they have amenities like home, but not being confined to a set time for breakfast, and owners around all the time.
  • There will be Open Houses held there for some of the organizations she is involved in. It’s a win for both, they can promote their cause, and she can showcase her apartment.
  • She’ll invite local retailers and small scale manufacturers to come for a tour and a treat. It’s an opportunity for them to bring information for guests who stay there as well. It can go in the Guide Book to Town.
  • She’s making postcards to leave at the local gas stations, restaurants and visitor hot spots. And not just for visitors – all the locals go to those places too!

Finally, she’s asking her friends to share the news in their circles. We don’t all know the same people!

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