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Offer Discounted Gap Night to Channel Guest Without Contact Information

Triggers give you a powerful way to communicate automatically. You can respond to guests with personalized messages or notify third parties without lifting a finger!  To read more about triggers, check out our Trigger overview support article. We've created a small library of trigger examples to help get you started.

In this example, we're dealing with a booking for the following scenario:

Scenario: Offer Discounted Gap Night to Channel Guests Without Contact Information

Gap nights are a big opportunity to juice revenue. One big thing in vacation rentals is maximizing nights booked and occupancy by up-selling your "gap" or "hole" nights between bookings. You can do this by getting more bookings, but if you can get a guest who's already booked to add a day to their booking, that's a win/win. You can discount it deeply because there are no additional fixed costs like cleaning fees or utilities, so you get a few extra bucks, and the guest gets to stay an extra day at a discount. Learn more by reading our Gap Management support article.

This scenario assumes that the guest has NOT provided any contact information or signed a renter agreement. Thus, you can only reach out to them by channel messaging to offer discounted gap nights for their upcoming trip. See the Ask Channel Booking Guest Without Contact Info, to Provide Contact Info and Sign Renter Agreement support article for more information.

Note: Why can't you use a platform email or proxy email address like "joe.blow.12345@messages.airbnb.com" or "joe.blow.12345@messages.booking.com?" These platform/proxy email addresses aren't real. If you send messages to them, your message will be collected by the channel, stripped, re-formatted, and displayed on the channel's message platform in various ways that typically don't work well for email.

By setting up a channel template and trigger, you can send a personalized message offering discounted gap nights to guests a couple of days following their initial booking. OwnerRez can do that for you with message triggers.

Here are the steps for how to set up a template and trigger for this scenario:

  1. Create a booking channel template offering discounted gap nights to channel guests without contact information
  2. Create a trigger that applies to bookings offering discounted gap nights to channel guests without contact information
  3. Variations

Create a booking channel template offering discounted gap nights to channel guests without contact information

Without guest contact information for your channel guest, you only have one choice for the type of template you can create - a channel template.  If you want to send a message on Airbnb, the booking must have come through Airbnb to begin with so that our system knows how to deliver your response back to the correct Airbnb thread.

Channels like Airbnb and Booking.com don't provide an email address for the guest, so you need to be able to reply on channel messaging platforms as well. See the Ask Channel Booking Guest Without Contact Info, to Provide Contact Info and Sign Renter Agreement support article for more information. OwnerRez directly integrates with the native messaging platforms at Vrbo, Airbnb, and Booking.com, so this is easy to set up!

Note: Why can't you use a platform email or proxy email address like "joe.blow.12345@messages.airbnb.com" or "joe.blow.12345@messages.booking.com?" These platform/proxy email addresses aren't real. If you send messages to them, your message will be collected by the channel, stripped, re-formatted and displayed on the channel's message platform in various ways that typically don't work well for email.

For detailed information about how channel templates work, check out the Channel Templates and field codes support articles.

To create a channel template, go to Settings > Templates > Channel tab > click the Create Channel Template button > select the "Booking" option. This will open a message editor with some sample field codes filled in.

Copy and paste the following values into your new channel template.

Name:

Offer Discounted Gap Nights to Channel Booking Guest Without Contact Information Channel Template

Body:

Hi {CFIRST},

Thanks for booking {PDISPNAME}!

I just noticed that the {BADJOPEN} your reservation is still available.

Would you like to add additional nights to your reservation for 25% off?  If you are interested, please reply to this message.

Talk to you soon and thanks for choosing {PDISPNAME}!

{MYFIRST}

Channel templates have a Preview button, so as you type, you can quickly check the preview window to get a sense of how the channel message will look.

Here is a quick look at how the above channel template looks in preview mode:

Offer Discounted Gap Nights to Channel Booking Guest Without Contact Information Channel Template Preview

As you can see, this message is plain (no colors, images, or rich text), but that's good because it will be sent to the guest via the channel messaging platform, and the messaging platforms don't allow anything other than plain text. Don't want to offer 25%? No problem, edit the text to whatever discount you'd like to offer.

You want a concise message for the guest to read, and this does the trick!

Now that we have your channel message template created, it's time to configure the trigger that will send them.

Create a trigger that applies to channel bookings offering discounted nights to channel guests without contact information

To create your trigger to send your channel message, navigate to Settings > Messaging > Triggers > and click + Create Trigger to pull up the new trigger screen.

Here is a list of all the settings the trigger needs to have:

  • Type: Scheduled Time
  • Event: 10 days After Booking is created at 9:00 AM
  • Add Condition > Adjacent Available Nights Status on: Either Arrival or Departure > Gap of > 1 to 2 nights
  • Add Condition > Listing Site is: Only Airbnb or Booking.com
  • Action: Channel Templates > Offer Discounted Gap Nights to Channel Booking Guest Without Contact Information Channel Template

Now, let's talk about what the above settings mean!

The Type and Event fields will make the trigger run 10 days after your guest books on a channel. Guests often book their vacation months ahead but don't really think about adding additional days to their reservation until after they book their accommodations. This discounted gap night offer channel message may arrive at just the right time--when guests know if they can take advantage of your offer. But maybe you want to want to send this discounted gap night offer 5 days after the guest books? That's fine, too! 

Of course, we added the condition of "Adjacent Available Nights Status on: Either Arrival or Departure > Gap of > 1 to 2 nights" because you don't want to send an offer to a guest booking that doesn't have availability on either side of their reservation. We added the "listing site" condition of Only Airbnb or Booking.com, but you could add any of your listing sites to the list.

Since we are targeting "channel bookings" for guests for whom we already do not have contact information only, we want to add a "Condition" to the trigger that will stop it from sending out messages for other bookings. You may want to add other conditions, but this is enough to make our trigger send the email message when you receive a channel booking and offer them discounted gap nights for their vacation. 

Keep in mind that channels like Airbnb and Booking.com don't provide an email address (or even a phone number) for the guest. See the Ask Channel Booking Guest Without Contact Info, to Provide Contact Info and Sign Renter Agreement support article for more information on that topic.

If users want to limit gap night offers to 1 night only, OwnerRez recommends changing the trigger configuration to only arrival; and to subsequently create a second trigger/template combination to match, which only has departure, with a gap night of 1 to 1. Then, your guests will only be sent a message if either an arrival and/or departure has only one adjacent night.

Please note: Using this method, the guest may get 2 separate discounted gap night offers, 1 for the night before arrival, and a separate message for the night after departure. 

Finally, the last thing we select is the "Action" for the channel template we want to send. Since this trigger is supposed to send a channel message, select the channel template and be careful not to select an email or SMS template.

At this point, your trigger should look like this:

Offer Discounted Gap Nights to Channel Booking Guest Without Contact Information Channel Template Trigger Example

Nice and simple!

Click Save, and now you have a trigger ready to go. These actions do exactly what they say. The trigger sends your channel template to offer discounted gap nights 10 days after your channel booking guests book. That's it!

Variations

If you want to take a more personalized approach, go to Reports and pull the Availability Gap Report. It shows the gaps, and you can write personalized channel message offers to upsell your discounted gap nights.

Or you can create a detailed schedule of discounted gap night offers with different discounts based on how close the booking is -- 15% off a week after booking, 25% off 10 days after booking, 30% off 3 weeks before arrival, and 50% off 5 days before arrival. You can create those templates and send them automatically on triggers!