Industry Insights

9 Short-Term Rental Industry Influencers to Follow

July 03, 2018 |

In the vacation and short-term rental industry, it’s the property manager’s job to bring the sunshine all year round to travellers. But while everyone is trying to go on vacation, few people want to spend a lot of effort finding the best rental fit for them. That’s what makes it so important to ensure that your properties are easy to find and appealing to book right away.

Are you wondering if there’s anything you can do to increase your chances? The answer is… absolutely! Everywhere you look, people are offering valuable insights to generate more bookings and boost your short-term rental business. With leaders across the different arenas of the travel industry, here are a few game-changers whose missions can help the sun shine on the property managers, too.

Short-Term Rental Industry Influencers To Follow

All these roads to success are waiting for you…


4 Short-Term Rental Managers and Hosts to Keep Your Eye On:

1. Heather and Mike Bayer, founders of Cottage Bloggers and The Vacation Rental Formula

Heather Bayer began her long and diverse vacation rental management career with a rental investment of her own back in 1998, followed by several others. Soon after, Mike Bayer came on board to manage her properties before starting his own local management business. Together, their experience owning and managing properties while constantly adapting to and staying on top of a quickly changing industry make their content invaluable. You can subscribe to their newsletter, follow their podcast, read their notable case studies, sign up for their membership plan – what can’t they help with? Check them out today.  

2. Matt Landau, founder of Vacation Rental Marketing Blog

Landau is the Founder of the VRMB, an online resource focusing on good practices and dedicated to keeping industry education healthy in order to keep industry business healthy. With a background in economics and travel journalism, he spent years personally analyzing changes in the travel industry that gave him credibility in the vacation rental market. As an ardent believer in the entrepreneurial spirit, Landau uses his expertise to consolidate the best lessons of the industry in this blog, helping property managers young and old acquire bookings.



3. Thibault Masson, founder of Rentalpreneurs

Masson first created this blog to document his experiences as a property manager. As his site gained popularity, he started to share and market the content publically. With over 16 years of background in marketing, Masson has specifically focused the blog around this element of property management. It’s a great resource to use in general, but especially to ensure that you’re maximizing the marketing potential for your short-term rental business.

4. Antonio Bortolotti, founder of Vacation Rental Secrets

Bortolotti founded Vacation Rental Secrets and the Fully Booked Formula online training program as resources to be available long-term. His expertise also expands into public speaking and the educational arena as well, with frequent features in magazines and on television. His success and passion for the industry led him to establish the The Vacation Rental World Summit, a conference occurring annually which works to distribute successful and forward-thinking values to a community of like-minded professionals in the vacation and short-term rental industries worldwide. Fun fact: he was one of the first to be called a “rentalpreneur” by Thibault Masson!

Short-Term Rental Industry Influencers


Specialized Skills in the Spotlight

5. Mercedes Brennan, top interior designer and founder of 1 Chic Retreat

Brennan began this venture in 2012 with her own self-designed vacation rental. After being offered an unbeatable price for it and a chance to exit the industry on a high note, she realized she wanted to stay in the business and turned towards interior design. Her blog started as a way to help owners and property managers stand out from the crowd to attract more guests to their rentals without breaking the bank. On the blog, she offers strategies that seal the deal within the eight seconds that users spend on average looking at each rental listing online. She advocates that while design and marketing are both essential, a poor design won’t sell no matter how well-marketed it may be.

6. Rocío Lane, founder of Cleancio

It was only a few years ago that Lane came up with her idea of the cleaning service that would quickly rise up the ladder of the vacation and short-term rental market. The catalyst for this was a was resentful night of cleaning an Airbnb-listed property she had paid for due to its intolerable conditions, while simultaneously dealing with canceled cleaning services at another Airbnb she operated back home, which cost her clients. She’s involved with WiSTEM (Women in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) and frequently speaks at vacation and short-term rental conferences – follow her or her company on Twitter to stay tuned for her insights.

7. Tyann Marcink, author of Create Killer Photos

Rental photography is not just about showing the prettiest features of your property – it’s about knowing how to perfectly complement the architectural setting. Hosts and property managers alike will benefit from this information by knowing what it takes to get the job done well in advance. While any professional photographer will be familiar with the features of a camera that can accomplish this, it takes special experience with home portraiture to do justice to your listings. Marcink has just the expertise we’re talking about, being both a vacation rental owner and photographer herself, which is why she wrote an e-book explaining what, when, and how you can capture your property in the best possible light – pun intended.

Vacation Rental Property Photos

[Image: Ebooks by Tyann Marcink]


8. Zurab Pololikashvili, secretary general of the World Tourism Organization

Pololikashvili advocates for environmental and climate-conscious tourism. Frequently speaking at conferences, he is fighting to bring awareness to the effectiveness or ineffectiveness of existing policies. Being able to collect reliable evidence to build better policies requires dedicated cooperation and the benefit of government incentives, both of which Pololikashvili is pushing for. He is also becoming increasingly vocal about the responsibility of tourists themselves to consider their carbon footprint when traveling. Keep an eye on his observations and his Twitter in order to stay up to date on policies and emerging eco-friendly tourism practices.

9. Evelyn Badia, founder of The Hosting Journey

Badia is an Airbnb veteran, first becoming a host back in 2010. Today she’s a superhost with a lot of advice for other hosts and property managers out there. She founded The Hosting Journey as a blog to chronicle her own journey. Later, she added a monthly webinar and podcast that features host and superhost stories – advising others who aren’t seeing the success they want. With a positive and fun-oriented philosophy, she goes beyond building profits to make sure you have a good time doing your job as well.

VR Evelyn

Host Help by Evelyn Badia



These are just a few exceptional examples of people whose ideas have been turning up the heat in the vacation and short-term rental industry. Luckily for you, they are devoted to sharing their expertise with others as well. So whether you’re a homeowner, property manager or both, you should take advantage of these resources to turn your short-term rental business into success stories like theirs.

And once these resources have spiced up your business, be sure to take advantage of the best property management software on the market.

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