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Airbnb creates ad touting kindness of strangers

Discussion in 'News' started by Matt S, Apr 26, 2015.

  1. Matt S

    Matt S Active Member

  2. Matt S

    Matt S Active Member

    Saw the commercial on TV and even at the movie theater before the film tonight. AirBnB going for the masses, this should make it interesting. I appreciate that for years they have avoided this marketing scheme and taken the time to improve their verification system. My guess is now they have so many hosts that they need more guests. This marketing campaign is huge. From what I am seeing the company is about to explode.
     
  3. Castle Woman

    Castle Woman Active Member

    I agree Matt it will be interesting to see how the dynamic of the community evolves now that it is going mainstream. I was at my sisters house yesterday and saw the commercial on TV. Like this article says, AirBnB has developed a wonderful community, where appreciative guests do give handwritten thank you notes. Guests often realize how much heart a host puts in and that kindness is often returned. I have gotten notes left in the room, and also notes in the mail. I even got an Xmas card this past year. These are the aspects of this community that make me excited about it's presence in the marketplace. I hope that this feeling of community will somehow be preserved as AirBnB ventures more into the public eye.
     
  4. Rhonda

    Rhonda Member

    The commercial is a bit over romanticized. It's also not so clear what AirBnB is to the ignorant watcher. My cousin and I were watching TV and saw it and he said he saw it the day before but didn't realize what it was.
     
  5. Sandy

    Sandy Active Member

    I am already feeling the effects. Lots and lots of requests from new users who seem annoyed that I want to know something about them before letting them into my home. One person I got a nasty reaction from last weekend, when they wrote me a message saying they were looking forward to meeting me as if my accepting them as guaranteed (this happens a lot) yet had no profile filled in or anything that told me about themselves. When I questioned a little further and was unhappy with the curt responses and getting a negative feeling, I said I would let them know in the hour. They said it took them time to message me, and I owed them the booking because my calendar said it was open and I had wasted their time. They needed to know right now, and said I was inconsiderate for not having the dates marked out on my calendar if I was not accepting guests. In fact I hadn't turned them down at that point, I said I would discuss with my husband because we were almost at capacity, and he would be available in an hour and at that point I would let them know. After the rudeness got worse, I kindly explained that the host doesn't owe anyone a booking, and that the community is based on trust and communication so in light of their aggressive behavior, was grateful to have averted an unpleasant weekend.

    Many guests that believe the room is theirs just because they asked is a part of the new this is just like a hotel but better marketing thing that I believe airbnb puts out there. It gives people the idea that people can just book fabulous places, and there isn't any responsibility on their side to make it work.
     
  6. Rhonda

    Rhonda Member

    Strangers in my house. You bet they need to have a profile, and they better approach me with some proper communication. Or it's a "Sorry best of luck to you." I think AirBnB could do with a better new user introduction program. How do you think it can be improved Sandy? I can't say I have noticed it getting worse, there have always been some newbies and entitled types. Screening through the messaging is just part of the process for me.
     
  7. Sandy

    Sandy Active Member

    Well for us in the beginning it seemed like the people were not such mainstream types, but rather those that were more up to date on different new things, and open to adventure. Now we are really getting your standard mainstream person who thinks of airbnb like a hotel but cheaper.

    I think it could be improved by airbnb putting more emphasis on the types of things that the guests are expected to be aware of and contributing to for a happy experience all around, instead of all the concentrated articles on 'how to be a great host', with ridiculous suggestions on how to bend over backwards at every turn and offer all kinds of special gifts and goodies that eat into the bottom line and your time. The advertising that makes out that it isn't a sharing type business, but instead that it is like the best hotel experience but even better because your hotelier will be like a kind of personal servant/friend with whom an amazing bond will form as they wait on you hand and foot in their luxurious palace is kind of ridiculous. I believe there's going to be burnout. Most people do it for a year, maybe a couple, some longer. But inevitably with all the price cutting and increasing expectations that airbnb is pressing on hosts, I believe the industry will be quite different in a few years.

    It is evolving much more into people that used to do short term rentals trying airbnb in their investment property instead. Less interaction with the host, not really anyone's 'home', and not really what airbnb makes it out to be. Guests like this too. But actually when you extrapolate the costs and work, it doesn't really end up being much more profitable - certainly not enough for many people to do it long term (especially with all the pressures to keep costs low to compete with the undercutting neighbors).

    Here's an example. http://affordanything.com/2014/11/04/the-airbnb-experiment-42-guests-1-police-visit-and-19000/ After a year they decided although they grossed 19,000, their net costs were only $9000, and thus not worth the extra risks, and lack of ability to have freedom to travel etc that a short term rental would. Still all the messages seem to be about people saying 'I'm going to try this!'. Suckers for punishment.
     
  8. Carolyn

    Carolyn Member

    Omigosh, Airbnb REALLY needs to educate guests better. I think there should be something mandatory to read when someone joins the site, which explains that it is important to provide information about yourself and to read the host's rules and listing thoroughly.
    I really wanted Airbnb to advertise more. My area is over-saturated with hosts, and at first I was glad to see the ads. But now I realize I have seen more requests lately from guests who don't have anything on their profiles and don't seem to have read my listing. Maybe we can "manage expectations" in the Guest Interaction section of our listings. Should we put something like "Concierge service is not available?"
     
    Estuarto and Sandy like this.
  9. Estuarto

    Estuarto Active Member

    It is very interesting how some guests get all the information upfront and others arrive having no clue. Well that's if they do arrive because they can't even find the address to my place in their reservation. Shoot they can't even find the reservation. Ahh the service industry, we have to deal with all types right?
     
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