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How to Maximize Your Community Membership

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Created on: Feb 28, 2012 4:24 PM by laura - Last Modified:  Feb 28, 2012 4:30 PM by laura

Community was created to cater to vacation rental owners, property managers and travelers from around the globe who are interested in sharing valuable information, exchanging experiences, and bonding with others who share the same questions about the vacation rental industry.

In addition to linking you to others in our forums, Community provides an avenue for you to find answers to your most important how-to questions by connecting you with HomeAway, VRBO, and VacationRentals Online Support Teams.

 

comm_profile[1].jpgYou can also create or join a group with other people like you – whether it’s a collection of “Destin Owners,” or a band of “eco-vacation rental enthusiasts” – the sky’s the limit.

 

And of course, you can always browse the Community’s diverse collection of over 1,000 vacation rental articles, podcasts, slideshows, and webinars for additional expert advice.

 

To maximize your Community membership, please find our Top 6 Community Practices below:


1. Register your account in your name or alias, not your company name

Why?  When people interact with users in an online community, they want to interact with people.  It's difficult to have a personal conversation with a business entity (unless you are ordering take-out).  

 

2. Upload a Profile Photo and/or Avatar

Why?  Studies show that relationships are built by engaging in sensory immersion.  When face-to-face, people are able to experience all things about a person - their appearance, voice, scent, etc.  When online, all of this disappears. Adding some sort of visual element to your profile allows people to "bond" with you. Ideally, a picture of yourself is preferable, however, a picture that represents your personality also works. The same suggestions apply to your avatar.

 

3. Specify if you are an Owner, a Traveler, or a Property Manager

Why? The purpose of joining an online community is to find other people like yourself and/or let others find you.  Specifying who you are allows similar people to find you in the Community. 

 

4. Provide Profile Details

Why?  By sharing more information about yourself, you’ll make it easier for others to find you and connect. This could even possibly lead to beneficial offline relationships that will bolster the online Community. Owners, consider sharing a link to your vacation rental listing, as well as where you list your property. Travelers, think about sharing some of your favorite travel destinations as well as where you might be planning a trip. 

 

5. Find Groups and Forums of Interest in which to Participate

Why? Finding places to participate is the biggest way to take advantage of Community’s value. In Forums, there are hundreds of discussions underway, always open to new voices and participation. Groups are also a great way to participate. Groups of interest can include regional user groups such as Hawaii Owners, thought leadership groups like Social Media, and product groups such as Reservation Manager. 

 

6. Find Users of Interest to Follow

Why? Finding people to follow and establish relationships with is paramount to building your social network and getting the most out of Community.  Following/friending people helps create relevant streams of information for you from Community, so the benefit is win-win.

 

Additional Resources:

 

- How to Use Community

 

- Community Word on the Street

 

- Community Guidelines

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