Marketing mix of Airbnb (7Ps of Airbnb)
This article offers a detailed analysis of the marketing mix of Airbnb. Its purpose is to investigate the 7Ps (Product, Price, Place, Promotion, Process, People, and Physical Evidence) of Airbnb. It also aims to examine how the company has been making use of certain marketing strategies and techniques to take its message to the customers. Airbnb is an American vacation rental online marketplace, headquartered in California, the United States.
Products and services of Airbnb
Airbnb is a platform that people can use to find short-term accommodation. Its listings are categorized as ‘Entire place’, ‘Private room’, and ‘Shared room’. An Entire place typically includes a bedroom, a bathroom, and a kitchen. On the other hand, a Private room offers guests a private room and a Shared room/common area is likely to be shared by guests (Airbnb, 2020). It is worth mentioning that hotels with concierge services have an easier check-in service than many Airbnb places.
On the basis of quality and target market, Airbnb places can be categorized as Airbnb Plus (highest quality homes) and Airbnb Luxe (Luxury places). It also offers Open Homes that provide people with free places to stay in times of needs. It should be mentioned that Airbnb does not own any places. It is only a platform that connects guests with hosts.
Pricing strategies of Airbnb
Airbnb has different fee structures. For instance, in its Split-fee structure, it deducts a fee from the payout of hosts, and it also charges guests a fee. On the other hand, its Host-only fee structure, the entire service fee is collected from the hosts. Although many analysts argue that prices of Airbnb services are relatively cheap, McCamy (2019) reports that this may not be the case when the guest service fee, taxes and cleaning fees are put together. These could easily erase the cost advantage of Airbnb over its competitors.
Place/distribution channels of Airbnb
Airbnb is available in more than 191 countries and territories. Its site lists over 6 million rooms, flats, and houses in 81,000 + cities; however, places such as London, Paris and New York usually have the biggest number of listings (Sherwood, 2019). Customers can reserve a place via the official website of Airbnb. Likewise, they can use many other sites to do so.
Promotional strategies of Airbnb
Airbnb advertises on different platforms. It reaches out to both hosts and guests via TV adverts and social media marketing. It has 4.7 million followers on Instagram; however just around 226 thousands subscribers on its YouTube channel. It should be mentioned that Airbnb announced halting its marketing spend in March 2020 to save $800 million to counterbalance losses caused by global economic crisis (Franklin and Vengattil, 2020).
People of Airbnb
There are over 4 million Airbnb hosts who offer accommodations to guests and earn an average $7900 per year (Airbnb, 2020). Some of the hosts are called Superhosts who have great industry experience and are glittering examples for others.
Millions of guests use Airbnb places and services every year. The key here for the company is to ensure that both hosts and guests are well looked after to continue its global march. Safety and security of guests in the absence of concierge services is a concern for many guests.
Processes in Airbnb
The process of booking an accommodation is easy and done online via the Airbnb site, app, and many other sites. Likewise, a potential host can click on ‘Become a host’ section on the top right-hand site of the company website and then click on ‘Get started’ to follow the prompts to become a host.
Physical evidence of Airbnb
Airbnb Plus homes are very thoughtfully designed and have all standard amenities. On the other hand, Airbnb Luxe homes are expertly designed and contain top-end facilities (Airbnb, 2020). However, many guests complain that physical environment of some properties were not what they expected.
We hope the article ‘Marketing mix of Airbnb’ has been a useful read. You may also like reading SWOT analysis of Airbnb.
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Last update: 08 December 2020
Airbnb (2020) What do the different home types mean? available: https://www.airbnb.co.uk/help/article/317/what-do-the-different-home-types-mean (accessed 07 December 2020)
Franklin, J. and Vengattil, M (2020) Airbnb suspends marketing to save $800 million, top executives take pay cut: source, available at: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-airbnb-workforce/airbnb-suspends-marketing-to-save-800-million-top-executives-take-pay-cut-source-idUSKBN21E3J5 (accessed 08 December 2020)
McCamy, L. (2019) 7 reasons I’d choose a hotel over Airbnb any day, available at: https://www.businessinsider.com/reasons-not-stay-at-airbnb-hotel-2018-12?r=US&IR=T (accessed 08 December 2020)
Author: M Rahman
M Rahman writes extensively online and offline with an emphasis on business management, marketing, and tourism. He is a lecturer in Management and Marketing. He holds an MSc in Tourism & Hospitality from the University of Sunderland. Also, graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University with a BA in Business & Management Studies and completed a DTLLS (Diploma in Teaching in the Life-Long Learning Sector) from London South Bank University.