Condo-World Continues to Leverage Proprietary Technology and its Hybrid-OTA Model in 2020 Expansion Strategy
Late last year, Condo-World, based in in North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, acquired one of its regional competitors, CondoLux, bringing Condo-World’s total managed inventory to just over 500 oceanfront condos.
Over the past 35 years, each company has played a significant role in growing the demand for condo vacations among visitors to the Myrtle Beach Grand Strand area. Between Condo-World and CondoLux, the two companies represent primarily luxury oceanfront condo rentals, including the management of on-site desks at several properties. Both companies have been major contributors to the golf package business as well, booking nearly 30,000 tee times per year.
“Condo-World and CondoLux have grown up side by side in North Myrtle Beach both virtually and geographically,” said Alex Husner, Condo-World’s chief marketing officer. “As across-the-street neighbors, Condo-World and CondoLux had a lot in common. For example, CondoLux also uses RPM, our proprietary software, which made this opportunity even more appealing; and Condo-World.com and CondoLux.net have been the two powerhouse websites in organic searches for anything related to condo rentals in the Myrtle Beach area for many years.”
Now under one umbrella, Condo-World will extend its marketing, revenue management, and property-care services to CondoLux homeowners. Condo-World will be the parent brand for all marketing efforts and in-market signage, but the CondoLux brand— with its large online presence—will be maintained digitally through its websites and social media profiles to provide additional exposure to all properties.
Condo-World’s Hybrid OTA Model
In addition to its expansion and aggressive in-destination marketing, Condo-World has executed a unique hybrid strategy, which includes (a) increased investment in the development of its proprietary technology to meet the specific needs of condo managers, and (b) the expansion of its national online travel agency (OTA)/ booking site for condo rentals in key resort areas across the US.
Designed to be a pure OTA, Condo-World.com provides its guests a wider range of accommodations through strategic partnerships with preferred resorts and rental companies outside its home base.
The hybrid model has been successful at deepening relationships with Condo-World’s loyal guests and with its resort partners. With a primary focus on condo travel, Condo-World has been able to target a segment of travelers in a more focused way than other online alternatives, and we expect to see innovative development of its loyalty program in 2020.
“After a summer-long exploration of what would be the next big move for Condo-World, we were at a decision intersection,” said Husner. “Our long-term goal is to grow market share locally through our managed portfolio and regionally through our exclusive resort partnerships. There are a variety of outputs that are complementary to both objectives, including the development of our custom loyalty program, building out additional API connections, and licensing our proprietary software.”
Husner continued, “When the opportunity presented itself for us to acquire CondoLux, we knew that was the direction we needed to go first. The acquisition was a natural extension of our growth because it increased our managed inventory in North Myrtle Beach from 350 to over 500 oceanfront condos and provided numerous advantages with economies of scale. Even better—the acquisition increased our ability to execute on our three core growth strategies, and now we are able to tackle all these projects as we move into 2020.”
Benefits for Resort Partners
As part of its OTA strategy, Condo-World has developed World Class Destinations by Condo-World, a collection of exclusive partnerships with resorts and rental companies with properties outside of its North Myrtle Beach home base.
“Gone are the days when guests only want to vacation in one spot—more than ever, guests want to try new destinations and take trips more frequently,” said Husner. “Through this program, our guests can ensure that the quality they have come to know staying with us in North Myrtle Beach will be upheld when they visit our partners. With the CondoLux acquisition, our audience has effectively doubled, which will allow us to reach additional guests in a noncompetitive approach that complements our partners’ marketing efforts.”
This spring, VRM Intel will join Husner to learn more about the growing segment of condo travelers and about Condo-World’s resort partnership programs at the upcoming Onsite Property Management Association Summit, at Hammock Beach Resort in Palm Coast, Florida, from May 6–8, 2020.