Lead Generation Unleashed: Harnessing the Power of Data in Your Business

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Welcome to episode 689 of the Boostly podcast, where we delve into the innovative world of property management technology with a special focus on StayFi. In this episode, our host Liam engages in an insightful conversation with Arthur Colker, CEO and founder of StayFi, uncovering the transformative impact of technology in the realm of short-term and vacation rentals. Whether you're a seasoned property manager or just starting out, this episode promises to enlighten you with valuable insights on how technology can enhance guest experiences, streamline operations, and significantly boost direct bookings. Join us as we explore StayFi's unique approach to capturing essential marketing data, discuss its success stories, and learn how it seamlessly integrates into your property management strategy. This episode is a must-listen for anyone keen on staying ahead in the dynamic field of property management and marketing.

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[00:00:00] Liam: What would you say to the hosts who say, well, that's, that's enough.

[00:00:03] Arthur: Yeah, I mean, it might be, uh, that's what I'd help you. If you operate single family, I mean, not single, if you operate a condos that are one bedroom and there's two guests. And they're typically a couple. It may not be worthwhile to invest in technology to collect the other person's contact.

[00:00:18] Arthur: So by no means do we say StayFi is the right solution for every single operator, right? Um, but if you operate homes that sleep multiple guests, uh, the value of collecting 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 20 emails per stay, uh, Tremendous. What has been

The Impact and Success Stories of StayFi

[00:00:35] Liam: the kind of wow moment of, of StayFi when you've realized, you know what, you're really in on something here?

[00:00:42] Arthur: success that we had with our initial customers, even with a very simple product, um, because for them, you know, whether you own properties or manage properties. Every incremental booking that you're able to drive directly, um, can save an incredible amount of money.

[00:01:15] Liam: Hello and welcome to the Boostly podcast. This is the podcast that gives hosts the tools, the tactics, the training, and most importantly, the confidence. So you can go out there and get yourself direct bookends. And a special guest today is definitely somebody who knows a thing or two about how to help hosts get direct bookends and get leads, especially so you can go out there and get direct bookends.

[00:01:35] Liam: Uh, let me introduce to you a very special guest, uh, is Arthur. Uh, Kolka, CEO and founder of StayFi. StayFi is an amazing piece of tech. And I know for, for many of our hosts out there, you might've heard of StayFi, or you might think, you know, exactly what StayFi does. And there's some of you out there going, who is StayFi?

[00:01:56] Liam: What do they do? So today's episode, we're really going to dive into it and really find out, um, all about it. So welcome along Arthur. Thank you for joining us

[00:02:03] Arthur: today. Yeah. Thanks for having

[00:02:05] Liam: me. So I know I've given you a little bit of an intro there, but can you just in a sort of elevator pitch, what, what is StayFi?

Understanding StayFi's Role in Capturing Marketing Data

[00:02:14] Arthur: Yeah. StayFi is in my opinion, the best way to seamlessly capture marketing data from. Not just the Booker, but every single guest staying in your vacation rentals or short term rentals. And the way that we do that is through a technology. We've all encountered before when you're at a coffee shop or an airport or many hotels where when someone joins the WiFi, you have to enter in information like name, email, phone number, somebody's In order to get access to the internet during the course of your

[00:02:45] Liam: stay.

[00:02:45] Liam: I mean, Boostly, we're always talking about direct bookings and the more email addresses you've got to be able to send your message out to, the more chance you've got of getting your direct bookings right. So this is something which interests me greatly. And I know everybody listening to this is wanting to find out more.

[00:03:02] Liam: Before we dive more into that and some of the services, what is your history? How did, how did you come to be, uh, you know, a founder of, of, of stay fine.

StayFi and Its Market Niche

[00:03:11] Arthur: Yeah, it's actually, um, I fell into this short term rental industry kind of accidentally, uh, my background's in marketing. And I actually was doing a consulting project for short term rental company called heirloom that had around 200 properties under management.

[00:03:29] Arthur: And for them, they had built their business totally on the backs of. So, in the U. S. 90, plus percent Airbnb and Verbo. Uh, and so they came to me to develop 1st, just a brand, like, what is their guest facing brand? And then obviously after that, how do they start driving bookings? Um, and when it comes to marketing a short term rental company, you really have two types of people you can go after.

[00:03:52] Arthur: People that have never booked you before, and people that have stayed with you in the past, right? And the first category is very hard to engage, whether it's search marketing, which is very expensive, or Facebook or Instagram marketing. It's hard to get somebody who's so accustomed to booking an Airbnb to book.

[00:04:10] Arthur: With a brand they've never heard of or stayed with before. Uh, so the logical 1st place for me was with the guests that have already stayed in the properties and love them, especially since. They manage homes that, you know, sleep, 10, 15, 20 people. Uh, but they told me that actually they had no guest data because those 3rd party channels obviously don't want to share, uh, the valuable data they have with the operators.

[00:04:33] Arthur: Um, so the challenge I had to solve for them was how can we collect information from every single person staying in the properties? And initially I just wanted to go and buy. That wifi tool that you've probably encountered at a coffee shop. Uh, but those systems didn't work in short term rental. So that's kind of where the idea for StayFi was born.

[00:04:50] Liam: In your experience, what has been the kind of wow moment of, of StayFi when you've realized, you know what, you really on something here, the

[00:04:59] Arthur: success that we had with our initial customers. Even with a very simple product, um, because for them, you know, whether you own properties or manage properties, every incremental booking that you're able to drive directly, um, can save incredible amount of money, both from booking nights that you've never would have booked before.

[00:05:19] Arthur: Right? So that's a great way to leverage your audiences really tactically target. Okay. I have this, you know, period coming up and I know that these 3 listings are not booked. Okay. Let me advertise those listings to this audience that I have, uh, because at the end of the day, the 3rd party channels, you have very little control over how their algorithm works, how you're ranked, you know, control over other people's pricing.

[00:05:43] Arthur: Right? So there are a lot of things out of your control. So, um. Developing your own audience starts to give the operators the leverage and power that they've never had before to more strategically start filling their calendar and get those empty nights booked, as well as start converting more and more folks over to the direct booking channel.

[00:06:03] Liam: Well, what do you say to host to say? Well, I've already got my PMS where I've got the email and I get the real email instead of the one from Airbnb. What would you say to the host who say? Well, that's that's

[00:06:14] Arthur: enough. Yeah, it might be. That's what I tell you. If you operate single family, I mean, not single.

[00:06:20] Arthur: If you operate a condos that are one bedroom and there's two guests, and they're typically a couple, it may not be worthwhile to invest in technology to collect the other person's contact. So, by no means, do we say StayFi is the right solution for every single operator, right? Um, but if you operate homes that sleep multiple guests, uh, the value of collecting 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 20 emails per stay.

[00:06:44] Arthur: Uh, is tremendous. Um, and also a lot of those capture systems may not be also 100%. Like, you may only capture some, or it's not, cannot require it. So there's all sorts of reasons why, uh, you may collect some Airbnb emails and not all, and I'd say outside of that, uh, StateFi is not just a data collection. So we also have an email marketing tool and a text marketing tool, which integrate with property management software.

[00:07:11] Arthur: So, we have a lot of customers that just connect, let's say, Okay. Owner or hospitable or another to stay. We screen and import all data from the into. So you can just market to the data. You're already collecting there. Um, so, you know, it's, um, kind of a, just a standalone email marking tool. If that's what you want to use and it's built for short term rental.

[00:07:34] Arthur: So we have templates and automations and things in there. That are designed specifically for this industry and of course, we have folks that use it as a blend, you know, they operate 20 units, but only 3 of them are large. So they only put state in the 3 large ones and then they just, you know, get data from their PMS and that gives them a really large database to market to and often the guests booking the largest properties that have the highest daily average rates are also the most valuable guests.

[00:07:59] Arthur: Right? So, uh, it's not a. Yeah. Zero or like all proposition. A lot of people deploy StayFi strategically to capture, you know, the data they really want to go after.

Implementing StayFi: Process and Hardware Requirements

[00:08:08] Liam: How does it work though? So how does it work? So what do I need in the, in place to be able to capture those emails to use StayFi?

[00:08:16] Arthur: Yeah. So if you want to use the email capture piece, uh, the way it works is you create a StayFi account and you first design the captive portal or the splash page.

[00:08:26] Arthur: So what are the guests going to see when they log into the wifi? Which will pop up automatically on their device and obviously that's a great first brand touch point because for most people who book on a third party channel, they think they booked at a quote unquote Airbnb. Right? They have no idea. And definitely the other guests don't know, like, who is the actual operator.

[00:08:45] Arthur: Who's actually creating this great experience for them. So that's the first thing you design. And then in order to launch it, uh, there is a piece of hardware that you need to get for your rental, which is called an access point. So in the U S you purchase that from us and we ship it to you. So you have some different models, depending on home size that plugs into the home's existing router and broadcasts a new wifi network in the property.

[00:09:10] Arthur: For guests that when they join, we'll give them the splash page. That means that you can also keep the home's existing Wi Fi running. So if you already have like TVs and door locks and pool controls or whatever on the existing internet that can stay. You just tell guests now to join this new network, which can also be the same across all properties, which is a nice way to standardize guest Wi Fi instructions.

[00:09:33] Arthur: Outside of the U. S. and Canada, uh, you purchase the compatible hardware from a supplier that we just direct you to. So in Europe and the U. K., you can purchase from the supplier, which is a company called Ubiquiti, and the, you know, we use Ubiquiti Unify devices. These devices are also very commonly professionally installed in multifamily developments.

[00:09:53] Arthur: And even large luxury homes. So it's also possible if you already have compatible hardware, which we come across all the time in the UK and Europe. Uh, we can also just add that to, or even Latin America, like it's very common. So we can just add that to your stay fi account. So not everybody needs new hardware, but most folks.

[00:10:13] Arthur: Operating single family homes, they would need to get a device and we can direct you to the correct device if you're uh, not in the US.