VRMA

    Concurrent Breakout Session Directory 

    Sunday, October 28

    11:00 AM  to 12:00 PM


    How to Create, Adjust and Execute a Strategic Growth Plan to Meet Your Goals
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Cliff Johnson, Vice President of Sales, Rented.com; Andrew McConnell, CEO, Rented.com

    This presentation will walk managers through how to create a strategic growth plan and execute against it. At the end of the session, attendees will have a templated growth plan and additional takeaways to help grow their businesses. The presentation will dive into specific topics such as: whether unit growth or revenue growth is more important, how quality of operations and scalable operations intertwine with growth, and how having a strong value proposition helps inform how they should grow.


    The Future of OTAs and Property Managers
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Steve Milo, CEO, VTrips; Darik Eaton, Owner & General Manager, Seattle Oasis Vacation Rentals; Amy Hinote, Founder, VRM Intel; Gianbattista Vespucci, Commercial Director Partner Services, Booking.com; Jed Kelly, Executive Director, Equity Research - Consumer Internet, Oppenheimer & Co.; Clara Liang, Director of Professional Hosts, Airbnb

    This global panel, moderated by Amy Hinote, will feature two diverse property managers, an equity analyst, and two OTAs who will answer rapid fire questions on the future of OTAs and Vacation Rental Managers. The panelists will include: Steve Milo, VTrips; Darik Eaton, Seattle Oasis; Gianbattista Vespucci, Commercial Director Presso Booking.com; and Jed Kelley Executive Director, Equity Research - Online Travel and Consumer Internet, Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. and Amy Hinote, founder and editor, VRM Intel. Fasten your seatbelts and prepare for one of the most entertaining and informative sessions of the conference.


    Optimize Your Accounting Process for Success
    Track: Finance and Legal Operations
    Presented by Ben Edwards, President, Weatherby Consulting, LLC

    This session outlines proven techniques to optimize your accounting process. After attending, Vacation Rental personnel will know how to properly assimilate vacation rental transactions and establish proper procedures to create professional and accurate financial reports.


    Practicing Conflict Transformation
    Track: Guest Relations
    Presented by Ali Cammelletti, President/Consultant, Cammelletti Consulting LLC

    By creatively navigating the conversational landscape of differences and disagreements, Brene Brown believes that we have the opportunity to create something new. This theory is based on creating a deeper understanding and requires perspective-taking, with the goal of creating a solid connection with guests so that they become loyal.


    The One-Page Integrated Marketing Plan Guaranteed to Increase Your Bookings
    Track: Marketing
    Presented by Matt Bare, Q4 Launch

    What gets written gets done – it’s as simple as that. In this session, you will be able to create a one-page marketing plan to set you up for success in 2019 and identify which marketing activities drive the greatest ROI on your journey to increase traffic, leads, and bookings. This session will also touch on how to reach more homeowners within your normal marketing rhythm.


    Vacation Rental Tech Panel: Best Practices on How to Smoothly Connect Your Devices and Tools
    Track: Technology
    Presented by Thibault Masson, Product Marketing Manager, Booking.com; Doug Truit, Director of Distribution, Stay Alfred Vacation Rentals; Michael Allen, BnbBuddy Short-Let Management; Clayton Brown, CEO and Co-Founder, Keycafe; Anthony Wen Jie Chow, Co-Founder, Igloohome; Ian McHenry, Co-founder and CEO, Beyond Pricing

    Vacation rental tech is exciting and attractive: price automation software, guest review management, electronic locks, and voice-activated devices like Amazon Alexa. But how do you make them all communicate with one another? What false promises should you stay away from? What are the best practices from vacation rental managers and from vendors? What costly or time-consuming mistakes should you avoid? In this panel hosted by Booking.com, vacation rental tech experts will provide you with real-life examples of how they have done it neatly and what their businesses have gained from it.


    How to Use Rate and Demand Intelligence to Increase Revenue
    Track: Technology
    Presented by Pierre Becerril, CEO, Transparent Intelligence; Simon Lehmann, Senior Advisor, Phocuswright

    This session describe the current state of rate and demand intelligence for vacation rentals, present market data on how revenue management is currently handled in the U.S., and share a case study of how to use demand and rate intelligence to drive up occupancy and ADR.


    Sunday, October 28th

    1:15 PM to 2:00 PM


    A Holistic Guide to Disaster Recovery: Managing Homeowner, Guest, and Employee Expectations
    Track: Guest Relations
    Presented by Scott Breon, Director of Finance & Analysis, Vacasa; Maribeth Clark, Community Manager - Lake Chelan, WA, Vacasa; Rick Haskins, Community Manager - Key West, FL, Vacasa; Steve Schaffer, Senior Regional Director, Vacasa

    From raging West Coast wildfires and devastating hurricanes in the South to record-breaking blizzards in the Northeast, many popular American vacation destinations have been impacted by natural disasters in recent years. During this panel, attendees will learn best practices from employees responsible for managing the disaster recovery process in some of these areas. The panel’s moderator, Scott Breon, Vacasa’s head of revenue, will lead the discussion on what the long-term effects of having a good disaster recovery plan in place are for homeowners, guests, and employees, and how that can ultimately impact a company’s bottom line. Attendees will come away from this session with a comprehensive disaster recovery action plan, including communication tactics, evacuation procedures, post-disaster repair and recovery, and marketing strategies to rebuild their local businesses.


    How To Sign More Homeowners And Keep The Ones You Already Have
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Douglas Kennedy, President, Kennedy Training Network

    Kennedy presents practical, hands-on tactics that can be used for personally engaging prospective homeowners, following up tenaciously, selling to your company's strengths, and closing more contracts. Kennedy will also cover how to keep your current owners using innovative mass communications methods as well as personalized reach-outs.


    The Forgotten Art of Turning Leads into Bookings
    Track: Marketing
    Presented by Jay Gould, Owner, Vail Valley Getaway; Heather Weiermann, Coach, The Vacation Rental Coach

    The vacation rental industry is moving away from lead generation to booking engines. This session will explain why this is detrimental to our industry, and how leads can decrease your dependence on booking engines.


    Free Money: Real Examples of How Dynamic Pricing Drove Higher Rates and Occupancy
    Track: Finance and Legal Operations
    Presented by Ian McHenry, Co-founder and CEO, Beyond Pricing; Dru Brown, Director of Sales & Marketing, The Vacation Company; Dennis Goedheid, CEO, Casiola LLC; Aaron Linfoot, Vice President of Business Operations, Meredith Lodging LLC

    On this panel, you can expect real-life examples detailing how property managers were able to uncover "free" money by using dynamic pricing to charge higher rates during peak periods and get bookings during low periods. The panelists will share their strategies for adjusting prices and how those strategies paid off. This session will allow you to take a deep dive into booking history and demand trends and learn to identify opportunities that will generate incremental revenue just through pricing


    Relatively Speaking: Achieving Success as a Family Business
    Track: Human Resources
    Presented by Michelle Williams, General Manager, Atlantic Vacation Homes; Jonathan Fonvielle, Guest Experience Manager, Atlantic Vacation Homes; Chad Taylor, Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations & Sales; Jodi Taylor Refosco, Owner, Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations & Sales; Maureen Regan, President, Seaside Vacation Rentals; Jennifer Thibodeau, Seaside Vacation Rentals; Vanessa Humes, Sales & Marketing Director, InterCoastal Net Designs

    Family-owned and operated businesses are a big part of the vacation rental industry. This panel discussion will address what it takes to work effectively and successfully with close family members by taking a look at workplace dynamics involving siblings, parents and children, and spousal working relationships. For example: How can you avoid or diffuse disagreements? How do you gain respect from your parents as an employee or business partner? How do parents know when the next generation is ready to take on more responsibility? These questions – and more – will be addressed by the panel.


    What You Need to Know Now: The Future of Marketing and Guest Services
    Track: Marketing
    Presented by Paul Hanak, Director of Digital Marketing, InterCoastal Net Designs; Steve Johnson, Director of Alliances, NAVIS; Richard Dunbar, Director, Partnerships, Flip.to; Shaun McCorry, Account Manager, PointCentral

    New technologies lead to changes in how guests will interact with your website, homes, and marketing. Join the technology experts from ICND, Point Central, Flip.to, and Navis to explore the upcoming technology trends affecting the travel industry today. From voice search to in-home virtual concierge services to the latest advancements in marketing, this is a don't-miss session for early-adopter companies who want to make sure they know how to use technology to improve their operations and marketing.


    VRMA Insights
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Scott Leggat, CEO, Local Social, Inc.; Mike Copps, Executive Director, VRMA

    Data has become an essential piece of managing a rental company. From the many pricing tools available in the market to aggregating global industry performance metrics, executives have difficult decisions around which tools to utilize in order to operate more efficiently and track industry metrics such as reservations, length of stay, booking window, revenue, and more. VRMA is entering the conversation with its new data program, VRMA Insights. VRMA Insights will be expanding throughout the US this year. This session will focus on the importance of data, why VRMA is getting involved, how VRMA got involved, and will demonstrate the tool to those in attendance.



    Sunday, October 28

    3:00 PM to 4:00 PM


    Going Global: What To Consider When Launching an International Market
    Track: International
    Presented by Cliff Johnson, Vice President of Sales, Rented.com; Eric Bordier, Partner, CEO and Co-Founder, LiveRez, RENTeGO Prague and VR booster; Pablo Pizarro, GM South America, Vacasa; Susan Doull, Owner, Commendable Rentals LLC

    This session will be focused on the different ways you can launch a new market internationally. Cliff Johnson will serve as moderator and provide insight into the legal structure and other regulatory and system concerns with doing business in multiple countries while Pablo, Eric and Susan will all share insights into how they launched their businesses in very different markets spanning from Eastern and Western Europe, South America and Africa. The panel will also provide insight into the different growth strategies that are deployed in markets outside of the US that may work if applied to certain US markets.


    Investor Roundtable: Where is the Smart Money Placing its Bets in VR?
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Alex Nigg, Founder & CEO, Properly; Chris Hemmeter, Managing Director, Thayer Ventures

    This session is a PhocusWright-style discussion among investors with a track record in the vacation rentals space on major trends, associated threats, and opportunities for VR managers. Hear these investors discuss topics like: how to map the industry, the winners and losers of consolidation, the fads versus the game-changers of technology, how to find investors for your business, and much more.


    Owning Your Brand and Turning It into More Direct Bookings
    Track: Marketing
    Presented by Dannielle Boozer, Director of Marketing, Rented.com; David Angotti, CEO and Co-Founder, SmokyMountains.com

    What does it mean to “own your brand?” Is it really worth your time to focus on developing your brand image? What kind of effect can your brand have on direct bookings? Learn the answers to these questions in this marketing-focused session. From defining your voice and tone to leveraging your brand power through traditional and digital interactions, you'll leave with a tactical plan designed to help you successfully increase direct bookings.


    North American Travel Trends with Airbnb
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Terry Donovan, Territory Manager, Airbnb

    This session will be a peek into North American market dynamics and travel trends as viewed by Airbnb. You will receive data surrounding the trends around length of stay, booking window, trending destinations, and rising origin of countries.


    HR 101 - What Every Manager Should Know
    Track: Human Resources
    Presented by Sue Jones, MBA, SHRM-SCP, SPHR, Owner, HR4VR

    Keeping up with the ever-changing employment laws is a struggle for all business owners, managers, and supervisors. During this session, you will learn more about important employment laws and regulations at the federal, state, and local levels that may directly affect your workplace policies and employee handbook. Understanding these laws is critical for managers to make good business decisions during their day-to-day management of their teams.


    Vacation Rental Regulations in Today’s World: A Global Perspective
    Track: Finance and Legal Operations
    Presented by Greg Holcomb, Director of Government Relations, Vacation Rental Management Association; Peter Allen, Managing Director, Agoda Outside; Philip Minardi, Director, Policy Communications, Expedia, Inc.; Scott Shatford, CEO, AirDNA

    Vacation rental regulations continue to evolve globally. While some communities restrict vacation rental activity, others embrace the industry to spur further economic development. An international panel of property managers and industry experts will have a comparative evaluation of vacation rental laws, regulations and taxes from around the world. Panelists will also share their insights on working with governments and proactively developing rules policymakers can get behind.


    Monday, October 29

    11:00 AM to 12:00 PM


    Beyond Time Management: How to Get Twice the Work Done in Half the Time
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Ron Rosenberg, President/Founder, QualityTalk, Inc.

    There’s simply more to do each day than you can possibly accomplish – but what if you could double your productivity? In this highly interactive and entertaining program, you’ll discover seven proven strategies to help you focus on what you do best and how to eliminate, automate, and outsource everything else. You’ll identify your greatest time challenges and how you can overcome them. Plus, you’ll discover the dirty little secret about “to-do” lists and proven strategies for managing phone calls, e-mail, and other distractions. Attend this session to take your personal productivity from adequate to exceptional!


    Owner Toolbox: How to Provide Personalized Service No Matter How Many Owners You Have
    Track: Marketing
    Presented by Drea Kasianchuk, Owner Relations Team Manager, Winter Park Lodging Company; Rachel Bach, Business Development, Winter Park Lodging Company; Peggy Axtell, Owner Acquisition Team, Steamboat Lodging Company

    Although technology is ever-improving and instant gratification is right at your fingertips, it’s still important to get creative when it comes to offering personalized service. While owners appreciate receiving an automated booking email or logging into their owner portal to assess their overall revenue, they still want to hear from YOU. They want to see that their Vacation Rental Company understands the trends of the industry and has them in their best interest based on their intention to rent. This presentation will show you some simple and effective techniques to establish a trusting relationship with your homeowners and will provide perspectives from two sister companies, Winter Park Lodging Company and Steamboat Lodging Company.


    Zero To One Million Visits: How To Build A #BookDirect Brand
    Track: Marketing
    Presented by David Angotti, CEO and Co-Founder, SmokyMountains.com

    SEO, content marketing, and PR are marketing buzzwords today. We all know that we should be utilizing these proven tactics to build a #BookDirect brand, but most of us fail to maximize these channels. In this session, Angotti will provide granular detail and demystify the process of building a brand using organic traffic. He will detail the exact strategy SmokyMountains.com used to surpass the one million visitor mark less than one year after starting in property management and empower property managers to be less reliant on OTAs and listing sites.


    Property Managers and OTAs: In Conversation with Industry Leaders
    Presented by Simon Lehmann, Senior Advisor, Phocuswright; Olivier Gremillon, VP for Homes and Apartments, Booking.com; Jeff Hurst, Chief Commercial Officer, HomeAway, Inc.

    Industry expert Simon Lehmann will moderate a conversation with key executives from major industry players in a fireside chat setting. With a professional background comprising Booking.com and other leading industry organizations, Olivier Gremillon has a unique view point on how property managers can use OTAs to their benefit. HomeAway’s Jeff Hurst will discuss the latest developments he’s seeing in the industry and HomeAway’s role related to the professional property manager, continuing on his standing-room only general session presentation at VRMA 2017 in Orlando.


    Tech-Enabled Property Managers Around the Globe
    Track: Technology
    Presented by Vanessa de Souza Lage, CMO, Rentals United

    Automating your short-term rental business is no longer optional: To be competitive now and in the future, you have to automate as much as possible. Attend this showcase of tech-enabled, global property managers to learn about the technologies used, how these technologies help managers automate their marketing and operations, and the cost effect it has on their businesses.


    Anecdotes and Fake News: Using Data to Effectively Communicate in Regulatory Debates
    Track: Finance and Legal Operations
    Presented by Greg Holcomb, Director of Government Relations, Vacation Rental Management Association; Peter L. Allen,Managing Director, Agoda Outside; Pete Smith, Founder & CEO, Weekenda; Matt Curtis, Founder, Smart City Policy Group

    When regulatory discussions begin, it is crucial to gather data and the right messages for the debate. This session will help you understand available statistics related to the vacation rental industry and how to discuss them. Panelists will also examine talking points and messaging to help convey the benefits of the vacation rental industry to a community.

     


    Monday, October 29

    1:15 PM to 2:00 PM


    Ski and Mountain Vacation Rentals: Your Guide to the Latest Industry Trends and Data
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Toby Babich, President/CEO, Resort Managers; Jay Gould, Owner, Vail Valley Getaway; Walter Buschta, Vice President, Marketing, Phocuswright Inc.

    Join a panel of experts to discuss the latest Phocuswright vacation rental data and how it reflects the current mountain & ski landscape specific to what vacation rental managers are seeing in their businesses, and how this information can be used to shape decisions regarding marketing, distribution, and the guest experience moving forward.


    How to Protect Your VR Against a Security Breach
    Track: Technology
    Presented by Amber Mayer, Vice President of Product Solutions, NAVIS

    Did you know that the hospitality industry is the second largest industry for data breaches? Any time you partner with a technology provider to manage your guests’ data, you are trusting that partner to safeguard that information. As data breaches become more and more prevalent, the risk to rental managers increases exponentially. Ensure that your guests’ data is secure and that you aren’t personally liable in the event of a data breach by attending this session.


    Building Your Profile on Social Media: The Power of Your Digital Assets
    Track: Marketing
    Presented by Leslie Preston, Founder and Managing Director, Bachcare Holiday Homes

    Leverage the power of social media to build your own brand and your direct bookings. This will be a hands-on, collaborative session on how to take advantage of various social media platforms and effectively engage with your digital audience.


    The Vacation Rental Industry Is At A Fork In The Road: Which Path Will You Take? AI (Artificial Intelligence) or EE (Emotional Engagement)
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Douglas Kennedy, President, Kennedy Training Network

    The vacation rental business is facing disruption from all directions. Major conglomerates are buying-up locally-owned companies, outsourcing operations, and cutting commissions charged to owners, while homeowners are testing the “by owner” do-it-yourself model. Guest-friendly tech options have automated most of the traditional “touch points,” like the call to book, the check-in process, and requests for local area information. As a result, the homes look the same, the prices are the same, and, since few staff members interact with guests, the service experience is the same. Therefore, many guests have no idea who they actually rented from. The vacation rental industry faces a choice between artificial intelligence and emotional engagement – which choice will you make?


    Funding Growth: The Options, Pros, and Cons of Each
    Track: Finance and Legal Operations
    Presented by Andrew McConnell, CEO, Rented.com; Eric Breon, CEO, Vacasa; Steve Milo, CEO, VTrips; Joe Liebke, Luxury Rental Group

    This session will highlight the various capital options available to help property managers grow their businesses through new owner acquisition and to create a homeowner retention strategy. Leaders in the industry will speak to their specific experiences with different funding options and share the implications for others.


    The Operational Excellence Toolkit: How to Streamline, Scale, and Improve Your Company’s Bottom Line
    Track: Property Services
    Presented by Bob Milne, Chief Operations Officer, Vacasa; Kimberly White, Senior Director of Home Interiors and Improvements, Vacasa; Steve Schaffer, Senior Regional Director, Vacasa; Jen Jones, Senior Regional Director, Vacasa

    With a constant flurry of check-ins, check-outs, cleans, and maintenance requests, it’s no wonder that the day-to-day operations of a vacation rental company can easily descend into a chaotic mess. It can often feel like your staff is playing a game of catch-up rather than proactively solving problems, communicating with guests and homeowners, and giving each home the attention it deserves. In this session, you’ll hear from Bob Milne, Vacasa Chief Operations Officer and former president of Wyndham Vacation Rentals North America, about how to structure your operations team to boost employee accountability and minimize operational confusion. You’ll also hear directly from Vacasa leadership, who have each overseen thousands of homes, about their day-to-day routines, personal management tips, and firsthand experiences, relatable for a manager of a team of three housekeepers or a director overseeing dozens of reports remotely.


    Seven Pitfalls to Avoid When Selling Your Vacation Rental Business
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Ben Edwards, President, Weatherby Consulting, LLC

    Ben Edwards and the Weatherby Consulting team have been involved in more than 100 successful vacation rental transactions. This session details the seven most common pitfalls they have seen in the purchase and sale process over the past 20 years – and how to avoid them.


    Monday, October 29

    3:00 PM to 4:00 PM


    Create Competitive Advantage with Diverse Distribution and Direct Bookings
    Track: Marketing
    Presented by Peter Scott, President, Bluetent

    Distribution channels are one of the most valuable opportunities for vacation rental managers to create competitive advantage, extend their reach, and generate qualified leads from new, untapped markets. At the same time, direct bookings limit commission fees, establish independence, and build sustainable growth. During this session, the panelists will share their diversification strategies, experiences, successes, and failures, as well as their approaches to mitigating risk and limiting reliance on specific channels.


    Distributing Your Inventory Through the World: Best Practices from Small and Big Property Managers
    Track: International
    Presented by Christa Levesque, Booking.com; Jack Zhang, CEO, www.zizaike.com; Suchada Taechotirote, CEO, FavStay; Luiz Gustavo Lessa, Co-founder and CEO, ACO Vacation Homes; Justin Wilson, Customer Experience Operations Manager, Lyric

    How do you get more bookings from international guests? What does it take to show them your inventory? From choosing and using a channel manager to understanding the pros and cons of each big OTA to picking niche sites, there are plenty of things to do. Four property managers will share their best practices in a relatable and actionable way in this session hosted by Booking.com.


    Property Managers Roundtable
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Steve Milo, CEO, VTrips; Ben Edwards, President, Weatherby Consulting, LLC; Sharon K. Walker, Owner, Walker Luxury Vacation Rentals

    In this session without vendors, Property Managers get to speak freely on important topics including software systems, technology platforms, marketing channels, regulations, and more. Steve Milo, Ben Edwards and Sharon Walker will moderate this roundtable in a manner that facilitates an exchange of multiple topics.


    The Legal Toolkit for the Growing Vacation Rental Management Company
    Track: Finance and Legal Operations
    Presented by Evan Osborn, General Counsel, Vacasa; Bryan Geon, VP Business Development / Corporate Counsel, Vacasa

    Industry professionals know that operating a vacation rental business requires niche skills and experience in marketing, operations, and sales. Despite this, specific legal knowledge is often overlooked or is deemed too daunting to confront. In this session, leaders of the Vacasa legal team will share tips to help set your vacation rental company up for legal success: from setting up a legal structure for growth, to writing effective owner and guest agreements, to handling the inevitable disputes. This session will also touch on working with outside legal professionals in a cost-effective way.


    Time is Your Greatest Asset: How To Focus It on What Matters Most
    Track: Human Resources
    Presented by Susan Blizzard, President, Blizzard Internet Marketing; Sue Jones, MBA, SHRM-SCP, SPHR, Owner, HR4VR; Maureen Regan, President, Seaside Vacation Rentals

    Time is money – how your time is spent will have the greatest and most direct impact on your bottom line profits. During this interactive session, you will learn what other Vacation Rental Managers are doing differently to focus their time on what matters most. You will also learn key metrics to ensure that time and energy is spent on the right things, helping you to avoid costly mistakes.


    Sharpen Your Knives: It’s Time to Double Down on the Guest Experience
    Track: Guest Relations
    Presented by Heather Bayer, CEO, CottageLINK Rental Management; Andy McNulty, Founder, Touch Stay; Tyann Marcink, Co-Founder, VR Mastered

    There’s a lot of talk about the “guest experience,” but what does it 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? By drawing from numerous case studies, this session will explain what “guest experience” actually means, and how you can deliver the best and most efficient experience based on your unique business.

     


    Tuesday, October 30

    9:00 AM to 10:00 AM


    Check Your Marketing Pulse: Are You Thriving or Dying?
    Track: Marketing
    Presented by Terry Moore, Marketing Manager, Outer Banks Blue Realty Services

    Outer Banks Blue is a four-time Inc. 5000 company. A big part of its success has been fully embracing marketing techniques that work. It's not about gimmicks or having the right tools – it's about having the right understanding, the right approach, and knowing how to use the tools effectively. During this session, expect to dive into why Outer Banks Blue does what it does, how it does it, and how it understands success and failure.


    Growing Pains: Can Hospitality Scale?
    Track: Guest Relations
    Presented by Tammi Sims, Head of Community, Properly

    The vacation rental industry is all about hospitality and creating quality and memorable guest experiences. At the VRMA European Conference, this question surfaced in a conversation with an industry colleague: Can hospitality and great guest experiences scale? Property managers worldwide have answered this question with creativity, resolve, and authenticity. Join this session for a presentation of case studies outlining how PMs from around the globe maintain high hospitality standards efficiently and at scale.

     
    How to Get the Most Out of Your VRMA Membership
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Toby Babich, President/CEO, Resort Managers

    Members will hear from VRMA Board and Committee members about how to maximize and leverage their VRMA membership to achieve business success and give back to the industry.


    How to Successfully Structure and Manage a Remote Agent Team
    Track: Sales
    Presented by Brise Carpenter, VP of Client Success, NAVIS

    As technology evolves, so should your reservation sales strategies. Join NAVIS to learn about proven best practices on how to bring your sales department into the 21st century, based on nearly 15 years of remote agent experience. This session will cover the benefits of a remote-style reservations office, how to structure a remote reservations team, and coaching techniques and strategies to drive remote agent performance.


    The Updated Great Change: How To Leverage Technology and Embrace Millennials’ Impact on the Global Vacation Rental Industry
    Track: Technology
    Presented by Sean Miller, President, PointCentral; Bob Milne, Chief Operations Officer, Vacasa; Eric Bordier, Partner, CEO and Co-Founder, LiveRez, RENTeGO Prague and VR booster; Susan Doull, Owner, Commendable Rentals LLC

    Discover how technology is changing around us in this panel discussion. This session will feature several Vacation Rental Managers as they discuss how technology is being applied across the property lifecycle to improve operations, how to save owners money, and how to delight tenants.

     


    Tuesday, October 30

    10:15 AM to 11:00 AM


    Automating Your Vacation Rental Business: The Future of Property Management
    Track: Technology
    Presented by Amiad Soto, CEO and Co-Founder, Guesty

    The technological revolution is upon us. Technology based on data, connectivity, and artificial intelligence is changing the world. Automation tools save property managers time by automating routine messages to guests, generating automatic reviews, answering booking inquiries instantly, notifying guests of payment collection, and more. Automation technology is effectively transforming this industry into one that is fast, effective and reliable. Automation tools do the tedious tasks, giving property managers the time to scale their business in the short-term and vacation rental industries.


    Conference Takeaways with Sarah and T
    Track: Business Strategy
    Presented by Tim Cafferty, President, Outer Banks Blue Realty Services; Sarah Bradford, Owner, Winter Park Lodging Company

    Come to this closing session to be a part of the popular podcast "Sea To Ski with Sarah and T," the professional vacation rental manager's podcast. This session will be recorded as a podcast and everyone in attendance will be asked to share their best takeaways from the VRMA International Conference.


    Don't Wait Until You're in Crisis: How to Build a Responsive Disaster Preparedness Plan
    Track: Marketing
    Presented by Ann Marie Houlihan, Director of Sales & Marketing, Q4Launch

    The last 12 months have brought regions of the United States face-to-face with hurricanes, fires, mudslides, and flooding. While you never know when or where Mother Nature will strike, you can be prepared!


    Operations Roundtable
    Track: Property Services
    Presented by Emily Vandall, General Manager, Vacasa

    In this roundtable discussion, you can bring your operational questions and learn best practices and tips from your VR peers. Arm yourself with questions – like "What should I do about service animals?" or "How should I handle last-minute bookings?" – and prepare to learn from one another!


    The Chinese Market: How to Attract Chinese Travelers
    Track: International
    Presented by Yong Liu, CEO, Holidale Inc

    Based on statistic data, 10% of all outbound travelers are from China, and 7.3 million Chinese tourists will visit the United States by 2021. Chinese tourists are making a huge impact on vacation rental industry, and an increasing number of Chinese outbound travelers are starting to prefer centrally-managed properties with full amenities rather than hotels. Holidale Inc. CEO Yong Liu will analyze the Chinese tourism market from multiple angles – traveling habits and preferences, communication tools, marketing channels and platforms, language barriers, and culture differences – in hopes of better understanding the Chinese market.


    Your Inventory, Their Rules: How to Play the Distribution Game
    Presented by Ned Lucks, CTO / Partner, Bluetent; Ben Edwards, President, Weatherby Consulting, LLC; Maslin Seal, Village Realty; Thomas Salinas, VP and General Manager, Oranj Palm Vacation Homes; Sasha Lawler, Director of Sales, Bluetent

    This interactive discussion will explore the world of distribution and how to embrace the vast opportunities available. Fortunately, listing on OTAs doesn’t have to be all or nothing. You have the right to craft a strategy that appropriately aligns with your business objectives, inventory, availability, and owner preferences. This session will specifically discuss pricing, content, and inventory management strategies, and how to tweak each to fit your goals. With a dynamic distribution strategy, you can create competitive advantage, extend your reach, and generate qualified conversions. Do more than connect – it’s time to thrive!