Diversify Through Direct Bookings (Episode 315)

Pro Tips to Diversify Your Marketing & Grow Direct Bookings

Today’s expert guest, Mark Simpson, helps hosts get the tools, tactics, training – and most importantly – the confidence to boost their direct bookings. After working in hospitality for many years, he founded Boostly in 2016 in the UK and his mission there is to empower people to own their own bookings.

Mark’s the poster child for direct booking, so in today’s episode, we talk all about diversifying your process and leaning into the direct model – covering who direct booking most benefits, how to power through painful growth, and his new documentary!

For the past year, Mark followed and coached two STR hosts, one in the US and one in the UK. They both navigate unique scenarios, painting an informative picture of what it takes to effectively scale in this industry. Don’t miss its premiere on December 26th on YouTube.

(00:01:25) #STRShareSunday: @domehausholidays

  • Moonhaven Forest Dome w/ Hot Tub Moroccan Design
  • Important word-of-mouth security trends to know about
  • Learn more: Superhog

(00:08:18) Update on Mark Simpson’s Mission

(00:15:13) Effective Ways to Communicate With Guests

  • Identify what hotels do well in marketing
  • Promote the cost-benefit of direct booking
  • Usings OTAs to build an email list
  • Tips for making attractive offers
  • Read:  Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk
  • Leveraging personalized data and AI
  • Learn more: StayFi
  • Prioritizing hospitality vs. selling

(00:28:44) Sharing the Hosting Experience on YouTube

(00:36:25) Navigating the Ups & Downs of Direct Booking

  • Tips for staying encouraged and motivated 
  • Practicing patience with the process 
  • Keeping your end-goal in mind

(00:40:47) Airbnb’s Winter Update vs. Direct Bookings

  • The risk in being platform-dependant 
  • Reading between the lines of the release
  • Learn more: PriceLabs
  • Learn more: Superhog

Download a transcript of this episode.




Let’s talk about Moonhaven Haus – a glamping paradise in South Carolina’s serene upstate. It is a 525 sq ft Moroccan-inspired geodesic dome that’s more than just a getaway, it’s an experience! From the full kitchen and cozy living space to the breathtaking forest and mountain views, this place has it all. We’re obsessed with the curated vinyl collection, the hot tub, love lock add-on package, the private hot tub, and chic design touches like the Turkish chandelier and custom bathroom details.

We would love to feature YOU, so don’t forget to use #STRShareSunday to get your chance!

Together, Annette & Sarah are the dynamic duo behind the wildly popular podcast Thanks For Visiting, co-creators of the Hosting Business Mastery Method, & seasoned short-term-rental hosts.

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