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A MSP Business Model & Workflow to Ace VRBO/HomeAway for Property Managers9521

WGAN Forum
Founder
DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user

Video: HomeAway Virtual Tours: Today | Video courtesy of HomeAway YouTube Channel


Screen Grab from Matterport Workshop | Apps Tab

A MSP Business Model & Workflow to Ace VRBO/HomeAway for Property Management Companies

Hi All,

If you live in a vacation destination, are - or thinking about becoming - a Matterport Service Provider and have solid connections with Property Management companies that manage hundreds of VRBO and HomeAway listings, the following is super-exciting news for you: a Matterport Service Provider Business Model and Workflow to Ace VRBO and HomeAway for Property Management Companies.

In the last 30 days, three (seemingly) unrelated news items have appeared in the WGAN Forum that make this Business Model and Workflow possible.

Matterport New Pricing
Ricoh Theta Z1 Officially in Matterport Public Beta Testing
How to Publish 360º Tour to VRBO and HomeAway via Matterport Workshop V3.0

Here is the formula ...




More on that formula in a moment. You can now shoot hundreds and hundreds of 360º tours for Property Managers for their VRBO and HomeAway listings using a Ricoh Theta Z1 processed by Matterport.

For $69 per month, you can process an unlimited number of Matterport 3D Tours with a Matterport Professional Plan. Once you publish the Tour to HomeAway and VRBO, you can archive an unlimited number of Matterport 3D Tours. (They only need to be active long enough to publish to VRBO and HomeAway.)

Use a Ricoh Theta Z1 – instead of a Matterport Pro2 3D Camera to make your shoot workflow super-fast. You want to be in the business of shooting hundreds and thousands of tours: not one-offs for property owners.

While the quality of the Ricoh Theta Z1 will not be as good as a Matterport Pro2 3D Camera, it is "good enough" to be able to develop a super-fast shooting workflow to price tours attractively to Property Managers. Plus, these tours do not need Highlight Reel, SnapShots or MatterTags.

For this business model to work, you will ultimately need to scale your business with $10 to $20 per hour work-for-hire photographers whom are using a $1,000 camera – not $3,400 cameras. (And, yes, you could shoot with an Insta360 One X for $400.) Plus, this is the professional Monopod that you want.

Let's review your investment (annualized) before tax and shipping:

1. Matterport Professional Plan ($69 month-to-month): $828
2. Ricoh Theta Z1 with lens cap: $1,020 or Insta360 One X with Memory Card: $415
3. Professional grade Monopod: $140
Total: $1,988 with Ricoh Theta Z1
Total: $1,383 with Insta360 One X

So, for less than $2,000 - or even less than $1,400 - in your first year, you have a Business Model and Shooting Workflow to Succeed Faster with VRBO and HomeAway for Property Management Companies. Plus, your incremental gear expense - as you add freelance shooters - is just $1,160 or $555 respectively.

These numbers are far less than the investment I made in July 2014 when I bought a Matterport Camera for $4,500, an iPad to run the camera, special tripod head, etc.

If I was just starting out today, and my wife and I lived in a vacation destination and I had solid relationships with Property Management companies, this is the Business Model and Workflow that I would jump on immediately.

When you mash-up Matterport New Pricing with unlimited processing and unlimited archiving, a "good enough" Ricoh Theta Z1 (with stitching done by Matterport) and the ability to publish - free - to VRBO and HomeAway, your business will catch fire (in a good way).

And, that's is the formula (above) for mixing three ordinary ingredients together resulting in "releasing large quantities of heat energy, a spectacular purplish flame, and a great deal of smoke." [Source: Angelo State University. Link intentionally omitted]

By the way, make sure your agreement with the Property Management Companies is for 360º Tours. VRBO/HomeAway, at some point, will likely enable Matterport 3D Tours - instead of 360º Tours – you will have an optional extra upgrade to offer your Clients (so archive the models: do not delete them)

A Business Model and Workflow only possible because of three seemingly unrelated news items in the WGAN Forum in the last 30 days.

Your thoughts?

Best,

Dan
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THRHHI private msg quote post Address this user
I think you need to dial in the workflow and see how it creates the tour. I converted an existing tour and it uploaded fine. It has been about 20 hrs and still have not seen it displayed on the Homeaway page even though Homeaway syas it has been published. I did do the preview and it was pretty bad. It connects all the scans together so you can literally move between walls and rooms with a single click (similiar to GSV upload, but we can edit those in Gothru). As this tour is now i would not leave it up as it is so cumbersome the viewer would get frustrated and leave the page. My guess is it will need to be minimal scans, i.e. one hallway, and one in each room etc, for the tour to work properly.
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WGAN Forum
Founder
DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
@THRHHI

Since you are in a vacation rental destination – Hilton Head Island, SC – all eyes are on you!

I imagine your feedback is consistent with why Matterport to VRBO/HomeAway is public beta.

Dan
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THRHHI private msg quote post Address this user
That is correct. I just got off a 90 minute call with Home Away Tech support and they are not even sure of the workflow. They are very nice and anxious to to get it figured out. The disconnect seems to be how to access the Home Away account of the owner or property manager from the app. No where in the Matterport Home Away App do you verify the account holder. It just asks you for the account ID number. Home Away tech support is not sure what happens when it uploads, where it goes or how it gets approved by the account owner and posted. They did say there were some test cases done and admit that everyone that was involved had access to the test account. Obviously that is not the case in the real world. Thats why it is Beta. At this point there is data and info flowing between tech support and myself to see what can be figured out.
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DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
@THRHHI

Ha! HomeAway and Matterport should engage you as a Subject 'Matter' Expert.

Dan
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THRHHI private msg quote post Address this user
Yep also known as a guinea pig. But i dont mind. I did have to laugh that in an email to me they referred to it as the "Matterhorn tour"
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WGAN Forum
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DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by THRHHI
"Matterhorn tour"


I have heard that at last two dozen times. "Yes. We offer Matterhorn tours."

Dan
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THRHHI private msg quote post Address this user
So here is the latest update from Home Away. It turns out that currently using the Matterport Home Away App is only for selected people with selected properties that have been invited. Here is a portion from an email they sent me.

"Currently, the virtual tour program is still a pilot, and partners must be invited to participate; this is for a select number of our partners (property owners/managers), and is listing specific."

Unless you have been invited there is no need to use the Matterport Home Away App. It will create a tour that you can preview in an email that Matterport sends you but Home Away wont do anything with it.

It would be nice if everyone was on the same page
Post 8 IP   flag post
WGAN Forum
Founder
DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by @THRHHI
So here is the latest update from Home Away. It turns out that currently using the Matterport Home Away App is only for selected people with selected properties that have been invited. Here is a portion from an email they sent me.

"Currently, the virtual tour program is still a pilot, and partners must be invited to participate; this is for a select number of our partners (property owners/managers), and is listing specific."

Unless you have been invited there is no need to use the Matterport Home Away App. It will create a tour that you can preview in an email that Matterport sends you but Home Away wont do anything with it.

It would be nice if everyone was on the same page


@Jwbuckl

Can you help us out here?

Thanks,

Dan
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DeeJ private msg quote post Address this user
I'm researching this. I'll get back to you soon!
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Chemistrydoc private msg quote post Address this user
Typical....launch something, make a big fuss, and then let us clean up the mess they create. Hey MP / Homeaway - MY credibility is on the line with this! And, unlike you, I only get one shot at getting it right!!!

SMH

Keith
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WGAN Forum
Founder
DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
@Chemistrydoc

Ah! Another vacation destination Member - Gulf Coast - ready to go: once this all emerges from public beta.

Hi All,

Part II

Matterport + Meero + VRBO/HomeAway = Exponential Growth

Dan
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jellofan private msg quote post Address this user
Has anybody actually been successful in uploading a tour from Matterport to VRBO/HomeAway and can give an example link? Curious...
Post 13 IP   flag post
DeeJ private msg quote post Address this user
Check out this upload from Matterport to HomeAway:

[Link to follow]
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Matterport
Representative
Jwbuckl private msg quote post Address this user
@THRHHI @Chemistrydoc @DanSmigrod @jellofan Apologies for the delay in response here as Matterport had to coordinate two teams to run this issue to ground. Hats off to @DeeJ for pushing so hard!

This is what I know:

1. This appears to be an isolated bug at VRBO which is now fixed
2. Since Monday at launch Matterport has published +240 360s by over 30 photographers on VRBO/HA
3. Vrbo and HomeAway are correcting training / messaging with their support teams now
4. Vrbo public marketing site on virtual tours and how to get them is still not available. Vrbo plans this for the week of June 14th.

Should anyone run into any issues as did @THRHHI, Support wants to hear from you! Please collect your property listing and model SID and log a support ticket.

Matterport and HA have great plans for this integration. Thank you for using the feature.
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I have uploaded 2 scans that upload fine, display in preview but won't appear in Home Away. To date nothing has been resolved. Dee says Engineering is working on it but i have no timetable. I would love to get some marketing out but without consistent deliver of the product it is not a good idea. Guess i will go get some drone footage for a client and test this platform for one more day.
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WGAN Forum
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DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
Hi All,

A related WGAN Forum discussion:

Slides from HomeAway/VRB0 Webinar for Property Managers Today 12 June 2019

Dan
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So here is an update on 2 model uploads that have failed to publish to VRBO/HA. Super Dee Johnson finally got one of them to publish to Home Away. Lots of hard work by Dee and very persistent. That being said the integration and navigation on VRBO/HA is horrible. Master Bedroom door takes you straight to Master Bath. Within the Master Bath if you go to the closet area you end up outside at the front door. Within the kitchen you are transported to the far corner of the Guest Bedroom. Unfortunately this is a VRBO/HA integration issue not a Matterport issue. Even Dee said when she did the tour she felt sick and could not figure out where she was. Thank you Dee for all your hard work and figuring out how to get these models show up on VRBO/HA. Now it is time to do battle with VRBO/HA to figure out the navigation issues. Dan Smigrod who at VRBO/HA is the right contact? Their customer support is clueless.
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DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
@THRHHI

Wow! That's crazy! I could imagine that @Jwbuckl will want to research and reply ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by @THRHHI
So here is an update on 2 model uploads that have failed to publish to VRBO/HA. Super Dee Johnson finally got one of them to publish to Home Away. Lots of hard work by Dee and very persistent. That being said the integration and navigation on VRBO/HA is horrible. Master Bedroom door takes you straight to Master Bath. Within the Master Bath if you go to the closet area you end up outside at the front door. Within the kitchen you are transported to the far corner of the Guest Bedroom. Unfortunately this is a VRBO/HA integration issue not a Matterport issue. Even Dee said when she did the tour she felt sick and could not figure out where she was. Thank you Dee for all your hard work and figuring out how to get these models show up on VRBO/HA. Now it is time to do battle with VRBO/HA to figure out the navigation issues. Dan Smigrod who at VRBO/HA is the right contact? Their customer support is clueless.


In the mean time, here are two people at HomeAway/VRBO that you might want to reach out to. I could imagine that they would appreciate hearing from you because they would not want Property Managers getting back to them about the experience you are reporting ...

(These - below - HomeAway/VRBO executives ran the Property Managers webinar that I attended yesterday.)

Dan


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Thanks Dan. I did reach out to Tom Beagles and he responded within a couple of hours and said he would connect me with the right person.
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Matterport
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Jwbuckl private msg quote post Address this user
@DanSmigrod @THRHHI Gents - sorry to hear of these troubles and thank you for your patience. We have had but a few isolated cases where the process flow with HA needed to be honed and the Teams are on it. This is what the public beta is for - getting optimization on all systems between the companies, not just the bits. I will follow up with the Product Team/Dee at Matterport and see if I can learn anything about this case from our side beyond Dee's work yesterday.
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