Bryan Goodwin oversees FlipKey.com operations in North America. He has helped over 2,000 rental managers leverage the guest review and advertising services provided by FlipKey.com and TripAdvisor.com since he joined FlipKey in 2007 — as its first employee.
Bryan directly manages over 400 accounts throughout the Atlantic Seaboard that represent more than 40,000 units and 250,000 reviews. He holds a B.A. in Finance and an MBA from Bentley University in Waltham, MA and is an avid vacation home renter and aspiring vacation home owner. We recently asked him a few questions about his background and vision for FlipKey vacation rental managers:
Why did you leave the world of finance to work for FlipKey? I wanted to work for FlipKey because I believed in the management team, am interested in travel and specifically vacation rentals, and I was confident the concept of reviews in vacation rentals was smart and would work.
What is the top piece of advice you have for a property manager? Don’t let the highs get too high or the lows get too low. Property managers are in the insanely challenging position of pleasing both their home owners and their guests. Undoubtedly — given human nature and people diverse personalities — someone is going to be over-the-top happy, over-the-top mad or somewhere in between. When it comes to dealing with reviews and home owners’ reaction to those reviews, my advice is as much as possible to take a neutral stance and not let the highs get too high or the lows get too low.
What FlipKey feature do you think is the most under-utilized? Traveler photos and specials. Specials help attract eyes to your ads. The special doesn’t need to be 20% off — it can be a bottle of wine with any 3 night stay — just something to separate and differentiate your listings. Once you have your guests, retaining them is key. If you know you’re providing them with an awesome experience, make sure you encourage them to share it with you by leaving photos of their stay with their review. This kind of personalized content from your guests can be invaluable in attracting future guests or convincing someone who is new to VR that your home will be the right accommodation for them.
Any thoughts on where the vacation rental industry is headed? As someone who rents vacation rentals, I would like to see the industry move towards more seamless online booking so that as a renter I can make my purchase directly online after my research is complete. I think we’re heading that way although there are technical challenges that need to be met prior to getting there.
What do you love most about working in the travel industry? Traveling!
Where are the best vacation rentals you’ve stayed? The beauty of vacation rentals is that they are all great in their own unique, different ways. A mountain-side vacation rental in Breckenridge can be equally as great as a beachfront home on Pawley’s Island or a lakeside summer house in NH… I would have a hard time choosing only one home of the many great homes I have experienced!
What’s your favorite sports team? Boston Bruins and New England Patriots…
Think Bryan can help put your vacation rentals in front of the right travelers? Contact him: firstname.lastname@example.org