Online home rental service Airbnb is launching its biggest advertising campaign to date, USA Today reports.
The campaign centres around a TV spot created by ad agency TBWA/Chiat/Day — which launches on Tuesday night during primetime TV shows in the US, UK, and Australia — that touches upon the initial tentativeness users might first have about staying in somebody else’s house, especially if they are actually staying with the homeowner.
The ad stars a real Airbnb user called Ellie who narrates a “thank you” note to one of her Airbnb hosts, having gone on a jaunt around different cities including Paris, Tokyo, Rio, New York, and Tulum in Mexico. Ellie thanks her host for letting her meet their friends, and sharing their “world.”
It carries the tagline “Never a Stranger.”
Airbnb chief marketing officer Jonathan Mildenhall told USA Today the ad is based on a real trend of Airbnb users sending their hosts personal hand-written notes of thanks, adding: “It’s not a behaviour we could have remotely anticipated, so we had to put it in there. It’s part of feeling connected to people.”
The basic premise of the ad is to improve understanding about what Airbnb actually offers. Mildenhall said: “Most people either aren’t aware of who we are or think we’re an online retail property site” such as HomeAway or VRBO. We’re trying to raise awareness of the fact that to travel the world as a local is the superlative experience.”
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