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Educational Program

Session dates and times coming soon. 

Business Strategy


Achieving Operational Excellence: Scaling Systems from East to West

Presenters: Bob Milne, COO, Vacasa and Ladi Hatyina, Czech Republic Country Manager/ Europe Operations Specialist, Vacasa

Find out how to grow your business by identifying operational best practices, then honing in on speciality operations aligning with specific markets and corresponding regulations. Session attendees will walk away from this panel with knowledge about how to create a focused and specialized operational roadmap that drives success. This presentation will also demonstrate how to evaluate business opportunities that help vacation rental companies scale effectively and turn a profit.

European Travel Trends: A data perspective.

Presenter: Alessandro Pacilio, Global Product Marketing Manager, Booking.com B.V. and Pierre Becerril, CEO, Transparent Intelligence, Inc.

Explore data insights in the European Travel Market. In this session Booking.com and Transparent share the stage to reveal the main trends for the European Travel Market in 2019. Based both on the information from the Transparent Survey to property managers and Booking.com's own data this session will deliver actionable insights based on data a spark interest in new trends to stimulate further discussion. Where is the market going? What can we do to make the most of new trends? These are some of the questions you will be able to answer from this presentation.

How to Maximise VRM Revenue and Optimize Properties in Today's Highly Competitive Climate

Presenter: Tom Caton, Chief Revenue Officer, AirDNA

This talk will be a data-driven analysis of the supply, demand and performance of short-term rentals in European markets. It will look both at the macro trends, such as the rise in popularity of Business Travel Ready listings, as well as concentrate on the growth and performance of vacation rentals in specific markets over the continent. AirDNA is the world’s leading data company specializing in short-term rental analytics. Chief Revenue Officer Tom Caton will provide actionable instructions on how to use industry-leading raw data reports and data visualizations to optimize listings, successfully acquire new properties and maximize revenue. Tom will study three market profiles and use real-world examples of tech-enabled European vacation rental managers such as Hostmaker, Pass the Keys and The Plum Guide, and will talk attendees through how to benchmark the performance of their own properties against personalized comp sets.

How to Win the Homeowner

Presenter: Michele Diamantini, General Manager - Vacasa Europe, Vacasa

There is a diverse variety of vacation rental owner personas throughout countries in Europe, including the single property owner, real estate guru, business leader and more. Harnessing 20 years of industry experience, Miki Diamantini will demonstrate how to identify and appeal to each homeowner persona, thereby driving sales and forging a personal connection. The session will examine the objectives, financial interests and expectations associated with each persona, equipping attendees with an understanding of how to best win the trust of different kinds of homeowners in Europe and increase your company growth.

Is There a Future for Small Property Managers?

Presenter: Eric Bordier, Partner, Eric Bordier, founder of VR Partnership.world and Owner of RENTeGO Prague

Small and medium property managers face increasing competition, the rise of the OTAs, and increasing regulation that put their profits at risk. Many wonder: how can I preserve my profits? Does my company have a chance to survive against 10,000 properties companies? We believe they do, but under conditions that will replicate the benefits of scale while remaining independent. Share tools to be more cost efficient, create local alliances sharing inventory and portals, and unite to fight bans and abusive regulations. This session will be about sharing insights, practical tools and advice on how this works today and could work better in the future.

Investing in Vacation Rental Properties: Dos and Don´ts

Presenter: Niki Nutsch, Founding Partner, Take Five Homes

The business of investing in vacation rental properties has gained considerable momentum in recent years. A whole new asset class has emerged that promises to deliver stable long-term cash flow while building equity in real estate. Done correctly, the right vacation rental can be a lucrative investment opportunity, but it does carry some associated risk: For those who lack expertise and experience, selecting the right rental property in the right location – and being able to accurately predict return on investment – can be extremely difficult. Nevertheless, this presents a business opportunity for local vacation rental managers to position themselves as the go-to experts in their areas, both for real estate investors diversifying their portfolios or for families looking to purchase vacation homes that they can also rent out to offset some costs. This practical seminar will enable vacation rental managers to grow their businesses by helping vacation home buyers make smart investments.

Property Manager Roundtable

Presenter: Steve Milo, CEO, VTripsand Eric Bordier, founder of VR Partnership.world and Owner of RENTeGO Prague

In this roundtable session moderated by Steve Milo and Eric Bordier, property managers will speak freely among themselves on important topics including software systems, technology platforms, marketing channels, regulations, and much more. Audience engagement and questions are the backbone of this session, so bring your ideas and questions!

Guest Relations


Sharpen Your Knives. It’s Time to Double Down on the Guest Experience

Presenters: Heather Bayer, CEO, CottageLINK Rental Management; Andy McNulty, Founder, Touch Stay and Tyann Marcink, Co-founder, VRMastered

There is a lot of talk about the “guest experience”. But what does this really mean? Is it about having the best equipped homes, with ultra-fast WiFi? Is it about having a personal check-in process and being instantly accessible? Is it about offering concierge services? Is it about comfortable beds? Is it about shiny new technology? We’ll explain what “guest experience” actually means and how you can deliver the best experience based on your unique business, in an efficient way. We’ll draw inspiration from Gary Chapman's book "The Five Love Languages", and adapt this to explain the relationship between property managers and their guests.

Marketing


19 Must Have Marketing Tactics for 2019

Presenter: Steve Milo, CEO, VTrips

Steve Milo, CEO of VTrips presents 19 must have marketing tactics for 2019. From website optimization, customer contact tips to drive more profitable repeat guests, SEO strategies to drive more free search, Paid Google ad word tips, strategies for voice search and more, this session explores concepts for property managers to drive higher revenue, lower costs and more repeat guest business. The goal of this session is to create awareness of alternative marketing strategies to improve incremental revenue, customer retention and reduce dependency on any one marketing source.

Developing a Thought Leadership Strategy to Support Marketing and Advocacy

Presenter: Jessica Gillingham, Director, Abode PR

In this practical session, property managers will learn what a Thought Leadership strategy is and how to develop one for their business. A carefully considered Thought Leadership strategy can be a very effective mechanism for supporting businesses with marketing, public relations and advocacy work. Being considered a Thought Leader often means that you become the ‘go to’ source for the media and are then in a position to be considered a voice for advocacy and regulation issues in your area.

How Ancillaries can Help Vacation Rental Players Differentiate in Consolidating Industry

Presenter: Léa Paule, Head of Product Development & Marketing - Leisure Travel, Europ Assistance

With increasing consolidation of vacation rental players and the involvement of travel industry giants, vacation rental management industry players need to find new ways in differentiating their value proposition. This session aims at giving the audience insights on how and which existing and trending travel-related ancillary products and services can help the vacation rental industry maintain its diversity across geographies.

New Types of Google and Facebook Ads to Increase Your Bookings

Presenter: Susan Blizzard, President, Blizzard Internet Marketing and VP, Digital Agency Services and Strategy, RedAwning Group

Google Hotel Ads are ads on Google Maps for hotels, along with their rates and availability. Google is actively working on showing bookable vacation rentals as well, and is already testing this in some European markets. Learn how these ads work, and stay on top of this rapidly changing area of Google.

Finance and Legal


State of Governmental Affairs with VRMA

Presenter: Greg Holcomb, Government Relations Director, VRMA

More details coming soon.

GDPR: What you Need to Know

Presenter: TBA

More details coming soon.

Property Services


Follow the Wall: A Foundational Principle behind Holiday Rental Housekeeping

Presenter: Durk Johnson, Executive Director, Vacation Rental Housekeeping Professionals

Follow the wall is a foundational cleaning methodology. In order for a housekeeper to be efficient and quick they must have a repeatable process. This session will guide attendees through that process and demonstrate how the process can assist in speed and quality.

Sales


How Your Business Can Acquire 100+ Properties a Year

Presenter: Kamil Kosior, Board Member, Rent like home

Everything you need to know on how to grow your vacation rental business. What are the ways to get your inventory, strategies, costs, and what you need to do before you are ready to sign new owner up. Attendees will know what are possible ways to acquire new apartments and learn what the growth cost are.

Upselling and Cross-Selling: How to Increase Revenue and Customer Satisfaction

Presenter: Niki Nutsch, Founding Partner, Take Five Homes

With the increasing reliance on OTAs, the emergence of strong competition, and guests’ ever-higher expectations, maintaining profitability has become a major challenge for vacation rental managers. Employing upselling and cross-selling strategies is one of the most effective ways to boost revenue and get more value for the business from each customer. The most successful companies in the world rely on such strategies for one reason: They work. For example, Amazon earns up to 35 percent of its revenue from upselling and cross-selling. If you don’t actively upsell or cross-sell, you’re probably leaving a good amount of extra revenue behind. However, opportunities to upsell or cross-sell are limited, so you’ll want to choose a technique that will give you the best results. This practical seminar will help vacation rental managers increase their revenue through upselling and cross-selling strategies that have been designed with the customer experience in mind.

Technology


Beaches, Biometrics & Bots: The Future of Travel

Presenter: James Cassidy, Senior Director, EU Sales and Supply, HomeAway

From voice-based search to AI-powered customer service, technology will accelerate changes to the traveler experience as consumer behavior continues to evolve.

Already, travelers can take a virtual tour of a vacation home, book their flight with their voice, and use their augmented reality to locate the key lockbox - so what’s next?

Join leaders from HomeAway, Rentals United, Kigo, Novasol, Belvilla and onefinestay.com for a discussion about the technologies changing travel, how smart home technology will shift from delightful to expected and today’s trends that will influence the traveler of the future.

Blockchain. Drones. 5G. Artificial Intelligence: Implications on the Vacation Rental Industry

Presenter: Sean Miller, President, PointCentral

Sean will give a high-level overview of several technologies (Blockchain, Cellular 5G, Drone and Artificial Intelligence) that are in the headlines today, explaining what the technologies are in layman’s terms, where they are in use today, and explore what implications they may have in the next 3 to 5 years on property managers and asset managers in the private accommodation space.