"I've worked with numerous service providers over the years, and Deedub Inc. is one of the best I've seen in any trade or industry. Simply exceptional!"Susie Karlshoej
Owner, Via Palm Springs
Need we say more? Susie’s rave review pretty much tells you all you need to know about how successful this project was. That being said, the story behind the project is one we think you’ll enjoy hearing about:
An oasis of potential
In 2009, Susie and her husband purchased a four bedroom, mid-century modern vacation rental home in Palm Springs. When extensive renovations were complete in 2010, the house was transformed into a true oasis in the desert — the kind of vacation experience you don’t want to leave.
When it came time to market the house to potential renters, Susie took inspiration from the property’s street address and named it Via Miraleste. She then set up profiles on vacation rental websites like HomeAway and FlipKey.
And so began an amazing success story.
A chance connection leads to a powerful partnership
In May 2011, Deedub CEO Dave Woods took a weekend day trip from San Diego to visit some good friends visiting Palm Springs.
By stroke of luck, his friends happened to be staying at Via Miraleste.
“I couldn’t believe it when I saw it,” recalled Dave. “It was such an incredible home. Being a big fan of Palm Springs, I knew I had to rent it myself at some point.”
Three months later, Dave did exactly that. His weekend getaway with friends was amazing, all thanks to the quality of the Via Miraleste experience created by Susie.
After his stay, Dave noticed something:
Online, Via Miraleste had garnered some rave reviews from other renters. But in the context of a website like HomeAway, all the property listings started to look alike, even though Via Miraleste was clearly in another league.
So Dave took a chance. In his final post-vacation email exchange with Susie, he casually mentioned that she was doing a tremendous job on HomeAway and FlipKey, but if she ever wanted to take the next step in terms of developing her web marketing strategy or building a website of her own, Deedub could help.
Having already developed a good rapport, Susie was ecstatic, and an unlikely but powerful partnership was forged.
Sealing the deal
By the end of October 2011, Via Miraleste had a gorgeous and informative website of its own, launched in just six weeks from start to finish.
But the project was much more than a website. In fact, the site itself was built using an off-the-shelf but heavily-customized WordPress design template. Accelerating the design and development process via a template allowed us to respect Susie’s budget and focus on what mattered most — content strategy and creation.
During the first half of the project, we worked with Susie to study her current and prospective renters — where they live, what they’re typically looking for in a vacation home, and which types of renters would be the best match for the property. That critical research, along with a competitive analysis of other best-in-class properties and their websites, lead to the development of a comprehensive content strategy “playbook.”
As part of the strategy, we developed clever taglines and content building blocks that would give the website a personality of its own, and make the process of writing the remaining site content easier. We also assisted in the development of a playful, 1950s-inspired logo and overall look and feel for the Via Miraleste brand.
In the end, the intense focus on research, strategy, and brand development paid off in a big way…
“Having such an intuitive and informative web experience gave me immediate credibility in the eyes of the renter,” explained Susie. “While they may have started their search on HomeAway or FlipKey and been impressed by the reviews, it was having my own customized website that sealed the deal for many prospective renters.”
Today, Via Miraleste is the #1 rated Palm Springs vacation home on all of HomeAway with nearly 70 exclusively five-star reviews from past renters. FlipKey has also awarded Via Miraleste with their “Top Vacation Rental” award for three years in a row.
In 2013, the venture proved so successful for Susie that she acquired a second nearby property. Dubbed Via Jacques, the new house is quickly gaining a Via Miraleste-like reputation with guests.
Such expansion necessitated a significant rethinking of Susie’s website and web strategy, so she called on us again to build a new website inclusive of both properties.
Research and strategy once again played a big role, and one important result was a recommended new name for her venture: Via Palm Springs. With the new naming strategy, and the resulting website at viapalmsprings.com, Susie is enjoying enhanced search engine visibility, and a digital brand platform that can accommodate potential additional properties and future growth.
But perhaps the greatest sign of success: Susie is so pleased with our work and results that she regularly refers Deedub Inc. to other businesses and organizations, and we couldn’t be happier or more appreciative!
A success story like this is proof positive that amazing user experience means business. The sky is the limit when customer-oriented businesspeople like Susie partner with the digital savvy and user-focus of Deedub Inc.