In 2016, Airbnb were awarded Meaningful Brand of the Year in The Drum Marketing awards. As the Drum recently launched entries for the 2017 awards, they spoke to Holly Clark, Airbnb Marketing Manager EMEA, about about their strategies that won them first place last year.


”Airbnb’s marketing values are to be a Community-led super brand and what this means in practice is that we involve our community in everything we do, whether this is a campaign, being the face of the campaign, whether that’s research about a campaign, or checking in on how we’re doing. Everyone that works here believes in creating a world where we can all belong anywhere.”

To create this world, Airbnb have implemented a strategy based on communication, from meeting customers and hosts to talk about their respective experiences, to monitoring their mentions online to see what people are saying about the brand. In addition to this, they have supported and facilitated homesharing clubs – advocacy groups made up of Airbnb hosts – loose, informal lobbying bodies that push the company’s agenda to politicians’.


With over 4 million people having stayed in an Airbnb in London since it launched in 2008, the strategy of listening, hearing and acting is clearly working.  By regularly engaging with their customers, hosts and guests alike, they can respond to issues and concerns as they arise, minimising any risk to the brand and brand reputation.Clark also made it resoundingly clear that “to be a super brand that people know and love, Airbnb make sure our marketing is the face of the brand.”  To achieve this Airbnb  “measure how we are perceived externally, we do check on how we are performing – this tends to be against marketing goals or awareness or consideration but, also, about brand perception and brand love.”


Stopping, listening and gathering insight is something that can often get put to the back of the queue as the pace in which to implement existing strategies is nipping at the heels of us all.  However, it is often when we stop and ask the questions – why am I doing this?  Is this working? Are we getting the engagement from our customers we were expecting?  It is, then, that we can find clarity in a moment of pause to shift the perspective in which we have been viewing things, and re-consider fresh approaches, new areas for opportunity and connect with our customers in ways which resonate with them.Airbnb live and breathe staying in constant dialogue with their audience, they are a shining example of how involving your customers in your marketing strategy ensures success – in addition to the cherry on top, an award that recognises your achievements.


Holly Clark summarises what the award meant for Airbnb, ‘winning Meaningful Brand of the Year has been really good validation that we are actually achieving what we set out to do.’ As the noise and competition gets louder getting your brand heard requires greater understanding of your customers. To get a better understanding of your customers, speak to us. We’re an insight led video agency. This means we base our creative approach to your video needs on insight gained from your target viewers. Whether that is your existing customer base or a potential new customer group, we’ll work with you to get the insight that allow us to create content that engages and resonates with the viewer.