3 Takeaways from Heather & Mike Bayer’s VR Success Summit in Toronto


3 Takeaways From Heather & Mike Bayer’s VR Success Summit

Last weekend I flew to Toronto to attend Heather and Mike Bayer’s Vacation Rental Success Summit.

It was well worth a transatlantic flight, for I personally got interesting insights, both as a property owner and as someone who’s passionate about our industry.
The takeaways were many for anyone attending. My 3 biggest were:

1. Meeting Likeminded People in Person

Likeminded VR Pros learning from one another every time. (left to right) Marcus Räder, Eric Mason, Deborah Labi, Rod Fitts, Sue and Richard Vaughton, Martin Picard, Maria Schuh, Jayne McCaw, myself

Managing your rentals can be not as easy at times: you feel the pressure of keeping up with constant changes affecting our day to day practice – restrictive regulations, increasing competition, pervasive OTAs rules – and question what should you do next to ensure you keep being successful at what you do.

You may feel lonely facing challenges that seem getting bigger as we move on and you sometimes lose mojo, get confused or get lost in a whirlwind of activities that reduce your productivity, focus and results.
You do well, then you plateau, get stuck and can’t figure out how to get back on track and move on to the next goal.
Getting outside of your microenvironment and challenging yourself to attend industry events like these makes you discover how many people are on the same boat, how many found solutions that got them back on track and how many peers share your same exact fears, frustrations and determination to succeed. It’s a relief, a realignment to your mission and a recharge.
You may think it’s weird to hear this from me, but I came up with the Vacation Rental World Summit to get together with fantastic, progressive people, surround myself with some of the best minds in the industry, learn from everyone how to be a better person, a better businessman and create a movement of likeminded people who regularly meet to discuss and share where they stand, where they’re aiming at and how to get there.

2. Stay Up To Date On What’s Coming And Learn From Industry Pros to Stay Ahead of the Game

Andrew McConnell – VR Trends and what they mean for your marketing

Another great takeaway is the possibility to learn what’s new and trending today, which products are coming out and can make our life easier – both from a PM and Host point of view -, which direction may take our future and how to prepare so we don’t get crushed or go out of business. Or even learn what the future will be to predict whether we still want to be part of it or is it maybe time to consider an exit strategy.

I found quite fascinating Andrew McConnell’s analysis of the actual situation and its future possible implications and scenarios.

The size of the industry is projected to reach $170 Billion by 2019, with $204 Billion spent by guests by 2025. Loads of cash is pouring into funding companies in this space and we’re already seeing a consolidation that will likely bring to convergence in the near future. You can expect the biggies to get bigger. You can expect to compete with companies that run at a loss to buy market share and set others out of business. And you can expect an eventual shakeout that will leave a trace, like in all economic cycles witnessed in the past.

What does this all mean to us? In such a dynamic and challenging environment, we’ll be expected to deliver professional standards with the personal touch that makes us stand out. At the same time though, we’ll have to make sure we won’t be everything to everyone, in fact we’ll need to be exactly the right thing to the right people.

In conclusion, we won’t want to compete against the big players to try and beat them, for we stand a better chance to thrive if we take advantage of their platforms to build awareness over our own brand and provide an experience that’s unique, authentic and unparalleled to all our guests, who then become our biggest fans, and raving ambassadors of our own rentals back home.

3. Enthusiasm