Airbnb: travelling in the wrong direction


We recently launched a world-class referral programme for Expedia, the world’s biggest travel company. We couldn’t be more excited to have partnered with a brand that’s been revered as an ecommerce pioneer for over 20 years. And we’re delighted to bring their millions of happy customers a refer-a-friend scheme that’s more powerful, more engaging and more effective than anything the travel industry’s ever seen.

Of course, when you think referral and travel, one brand currently springs to mind: Airbnb, who became a household name on the back of their referral programme. In fact, Airbnb (along with Dropbox 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 But here’s the thing: if you take a look at Airbnb’s referral programme, it’s actually starting to look worryingly out of date.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…

Airbnb Referral 1.0

Airbnb’s referral programme didn’t always look like it does now. In fact, they didn’t even have

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12 ways to ruin your referral programme

Common referral pitfalls

Referral marketing is the fastest-growing form of customer acquisition - so much so that it’s becoming increasingly hard to find a successful brand which doesn’t operate some kind of refer-a-friend scheme.

It’s also fundamentally simple: your existing fans and customers are rewarded for telling their friends about you, those friends are incentivised to shop, everyone’s happy.

But, just because referral’s simple, that doesn’t mean there aren’t a number of things that can go badly awry. Sidestepping these pitfalls is easy (especially if you select a referral platform designed to avoid them), but you need to know where to look.

And that’s exactly what we’re going to show you in the slides below, citing examples where some brands have stumbled into these pitfalls while others have safely avoided them. Let’s go...

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If you're launching a referral programme, or you're worried you might be making some of these mistakes, just get in touch. We'll help you set everything right.

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Uber: lagging behind in the rearview mirror

Uber became a global behemoth on the back of its referral programme, where riders were rewarded for bringing in new customers. But what was once quite revolutionary now appears woefully behind the times and unfit for purpose. Let's take a look at the cab-calling app’s programme and assesses where they may have gone wrong... and where you could go right.

Uber's dramatic rise via referral

Back in 2012, if you’d walked up to a Londoner and said the word ‘Uber’, they probably would’ve started looking for neck tattoos and a copy of the UKIP manifesto sticking out of your pocket. Today, everyone knows you’re talking about the £50 billion cab company - and, what’s more, they probably know why you’re talking to them about Uber in the first place. You’re shilling your referral code in the hope of earning a free ride.

Referrals are one of the main reasons why Uber grew from tiny startup to dominant upstart. Back in 2011, Uber Co-Founder and CEO Travis Kalanick wrote that "95% of all our riders have heard about Uber from other Uber riders”; but that word of mouth wasn’t organic, it was proactively

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The science of referral marketing

The Science Of Referral Marketing

As the world’s most advanced referral marketing platform, we spend all day every day digging into what makes people share invites to their favourite brands and retailers and what makes their friends shop. Over the years, we’ve acquired a vast wealth of insight... now it’s time to share it with you.

In this dispatch from our labs, you’ll learn which sharing channels, rewards and incentives work best. We’ll identify which kinds of customers refer the most, the best time to get them involved and how long their referrals can take to come in. And we’ll debunk a myth or two along the way.

All the data in this guide is gathered from studying the results and trends across our hundreds of clients over the 12 months leading up to June 2017.

Ready? Just put your lab coat on and click through the slides below to get started...

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If you're thinking about launching or improving a referral programme, or you fancy even more insight from our experts, just get in touch. We've got a

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UBER: Hinzugehen im Hinterraumspiegel

Uber wurde auf der Rückseite seines Empfehlungsprogramms ein globaler Gigant, wo die Fahrer dafür belohnt wurden, neue Kunden zu gewinnen. Aber was einst so revolutionär war, erscheint jetzt beklagenswert und unbrauchbar. Werfen wir einen Blick auf das Programm der Taxi App und bewerten, wo sie möglicherweise falsch gelaufen sind ... und wo Sie richtig hingehen könnten.

Ubers dramatischer Aufstieg durch Überweisung

Als Sie 2012 zu einem Londoner gegangen sind und das Wort "Uber" gesagt haben, hätten sie wahrscheinlich keine Idee was das war. Heute weiß jeder, dass Sie über die 60-Milliarden-Pfund-Taxiunternehmen sprechen - und außerdem wissen sie wahrscheinlich, warum Sie mit ihnen über Uber sprechen. Sie werden Ihren Empfehlungscode in der Hoffnung auf eine kostenlose Fahrt abschreiben.

Empfehlungen sind einer der Hauptgründe, warum Uber vom winzigen Startup zum dominanten Upstart gewachsen ist. Im Jahr 2011 schrieb Uber Co-Founder und CEO Travis Kalanick, dass "95% aller unserer Fahrer von anderen Uber-Fahrern von Uber gehört haben", aber diese Mundpropaganda war nicht organisch, sie wurde proaktiv durch eine eingebaute generiert Empfehlungsprogramm Frühaufsteher erkannten den prominenten "Freifahrten" -Tab in der ansonsten spärlichen Navigation, entdeckten, dass sie sich einbringen konnten, andere Leute an Bord zu bekommen, und begannen, Codes schneller zu verteilen als ein Vegas-Croupier.


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