How to do Organic Discovery like Airbnb: Part 3

A guide to creating organic discovery: Part three of three

So now we come to the last part of our trilogy on how to create and implement an Organic Discovery strategy like Airbnb. In Part One, we talked about how to start with the basics by ensuring your customer experience really is first-class and is something that people would want to talk about, and making sure your SEO is in order. In Part Two, we discussed getting your customers to create content and leave reviews and share those on social. Now we discuss Influencers, Referral Programs and Employees and Partners, and how to tie all these elements together.

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How to do Organic Discovery like Airbnb: Part 2

A guide to creating organic discovery: Part two of three

In Part One of this guide on how to create and implement an Organic Discovery strategy like the one which allowed Airbnb to get 91% of its web traffic from unpaid sources, we discussed the preparation needed, such as making sure you do actually have a world-class and unique customer experience that’s worth sharing, that you know what you are trying to achieve, and getting your SEO set up. Below we will discuss User-Generated Content, Ratings and Reviews and Social Media, before dealing with Influencers, Referral Programs and Employees, Partners and other Influencers in Part Three

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How to do Organic Discovery like Airbnb: Part 1

A guide to creating organic discovery: Part one of three

If you’ve been following our blog, hopefully, you didn’t miss our prediction for the big marketing trend of 2021: Airbnb style Organic Discovery.

This was inspired by the momentous news that Airbnb released in the run-up to its successful IPO in December 2020, which raised US$3.5bn and valued it at US$86bn (almost equal to the combined valuations of Marriott, Hilton and Expedia). But if you didn’t hear, Airbnb announced that it got fully 91% of all of its web traffic without paying a single penny to Google, Amazon, Facebook or Apple (‘GAFA’).

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The Trend for 2021: Brands will embrace Organic Discovery, like Airbnb has, to avoid paying the Facebook and Google Tax.

The Trend for 2021

About this time of year, we normally turn our attention to future-gazing and predicting the global trends that we think will define customer acquisition strategies in the year ahead.

As you may remember, last year we identified five key trends that we predicted would shape advocacy marketing in 2020. And, while admitting that predicting anything in the age of Covid-19 is fraught with risk, this year we are predicting just one macro-trend:

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Airbnb: travelling in the wrong direction

Airbnb referral scheme

Chances are that when you think referral and travel, one brand immediately springs to mind: Airbnb.

They’ve became a household name on the back of their referral programme. In fact, Airbnb — alongside the likes of Dropbox, Tesla, and Uber — just about wrote the referral rulebook, so you’d assume their scheme would be right up there with the very best. But here’s the thing: if you take a look at Airbnb’s referral programme, it’s actually starting to look worryingly out of date.

So that’s exactly what we’ve done. Below, you’ll find our expert take on Airbnb’s refer-a-friend scheme. But, first, a little history…
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