Airbnb case study: How they express and deliver the consumer experience



Follow us

Our book

Brand Toolkit

Airbnb does an amazing job of delivering an amazing consumer experience. They deliver on their big idea of “Don’t just go there.” Live there. I have always been a traveler, more than a tourist. And I would love to live everywhere in the world. I don’t need a hotel

airbnb brand case study

I have always found it better to rent and live there for a week. And I hate staying in hotels, like a tourist. My first venture was in Peebles, Scotland, in 1992. I found an amazing place in the classified section of the newspaper. Do you even know where Peebles is? Wait, do you even know what a classified section is? Then, I met the person and went through a photo album. And then handed them the cash. I had an amazing time. The flat was the top half of a house in a small village 30 minutes south of Edinburgh. Then, throughout the 1990s, I found a place in France, Belgium, Austria, and New Zealand.

There is still no technology. Finding these gems around the worldwas not easy —it was like finding a needle in a haystack. But it was ever so rewarding when I did. I’ve been so lucky to have stayed in so many great places.

Airbnb takes all my hard work and puts it right in front of the consumer. You can sort by city, even down to the neighborhood, sort by the type of residence, specify a few needs (e.g. wifi), and then put in your price range. With most, you can see 15-20 photos to give you an idea. You can also see reviews, but they need help in that department to ensure honesty.  (e.g. It looks like everyone hands out 4’s and 5’s). 

You choose, select the dates, provide government I.D. to ensure it is really you, and then off your offer goes to the owner. Moments later, or when they wake up, the reply saying yes. A bit of hunting goes on, but it is so much easier than everything I used to do.

Airbnb: Don't just go there. Live there.


Airbnb has nailed the creation of the brand idea of “Don’t just go there. Live there.” It replaced their original brand idea of “Imagine a world where you can belong anywhere,” which felt a bit dreamy and disconnected from the reality of the product they were offering. 

Airbnb’s data says that 86% of the consumers who use Airbnb are picking the platform because they want to live more like a local. Exactly the same reasoning I was looking up places in newspapers. That insight of living rather than visiting inspired the brand’s latest and largest marketing campaign, “Live There.”

At Beloved Brands, we have created a model that shows how to apply your brand idea to every part of your business through five consumer touchpoints: brand promise, brand story, innovation, purchase moment, and the consumer experience.

How to use an organizing brand idea to steer everyone

Airbnb Brand

Great examples of expressing the Airbnb brand

In a partnership with the Art Institute of Chicago, they were able to recreate Van Gogh’s famous bedroom to be rented for $13 a night on Airbnb. While it showcases the museum, for Airbnb, it really brings their brand experience to life, saying anything is possible.


Next, to embed the brand experience through the culture, Airbnb built their new office in Singapore around the actual homes on Airbnb to showcase the vast diversity of destinations on offer through the community-driven platform. These include an apartment in Batignolles, Andy Warhol-inspired art loft in Bangkok, a caravan in Cornwall, a villa in Kuta, amongst others.


“Airbnb has never been a traditional workplace. At Airbnb, we want to create a sense of travel when we welcome people into our office,” said Airbnb Asia-Pacific regional director Julian Persaud. “Simply having photos of unique accommodation and far-off places are not enough, we want our employees and guests to experience the feeling you get when you travel.”



As a sports fan, Airbnb partnered with the Air Canada Center in my hometown of Toronto to provide an amazing experience for a couple. They converted one of the executive suites at the arena into a place to stay for a couple. 

They saw a hockey and basketball game, then skated on the ice and shot on the court. Have a look

Take your brand knowledge to new heights with our Beloved Brands playbook

Beloved Brands is a comprehensive guide that covers the fundamentals of brand management. It goes deep on strategic thinking, brand positioning, brand plan development, advertising decisions, media planning, marketing analytics, and the brand financials. This is an opportunity to build your marketing skills to help your career. And, it will provide you with the roadmap for driving growth on your brand. 

Beloved Brands book for marketers

Marketers see Beloved Brands playbook as a go-to resource, as they keep it within arm’s reach for any new project. We are thrilled it has received a 5-star rating from nearly 90% of Amazon reviewers.

Additionally, we have also created playbooks for B2B Brands and Healthcare Brands, catering to specific industries.

Beloved Brands logo

Graham Robertson

Email questions

Call 416 885 3911

Follow us on LinkedIn

Beloved Brands book

Brand Toolkit

Beloved Brands Marketing Training

Beloved Brands Marketing Training Video

Elevate your team’s performance with our marketing training. The smarter they are, the greater your brand growth will be.

Our Best Posts for Beloved Brands blog

Click to read more

Beloved Brands Playbooks
Beloved Brands Brand Templates

Find the template that fits your brand. Each of our templates is available for consumer, B2B, healthcare, or retailer brands. 

Beloved Brands Mini MBA
Beloved Brands graham robertson

Contact Information

Graham Robertson

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 416–885–3911

Search our site for any marketing topic

M a r k e t i n g    B o o k

beloved brands

the playbook for how to create a brand your consumers will love

With our Beloved Brands playbook, you will learn to think strategically, define your brand positioning, write a marketing plan, make execution decisions, and analyze your brand. Our readers tell us they reach for Beloved Brands as a reference tool to help them with the day-to-day management of their brand. We are proud that 89% of online reviewers have rated Beloved Brands a 5-star. As a result, Beloved Brands has been a #1 bestseller in brand management. We also have the B2B Brands playbook and our Healthcare Brands playbook

Marketing Training

The smarter your team, the better the results you will see!

As a marketing team leader, you know that your team’s success is essential for your company’s growth. Our Beloved Brands marketing training gives your team the skills they need to make strategic decisions, produce exceptional work, and drive business growth. They will learn to define brand positioning, write effective plans, improve brief writing, make informed execution decisions, and analyze their brand’s performance.

We have designed our marketing training program to build the fundamental skills to help your team reach their full potential. We will work with your team to help them learn to take on Strategic Thinking, Brand Positioning, Marketing Planning, Marketing Execution, and Brand Analytics. 

Brand Toolkit
beloved brands book, marketing book
Beloved Brands Mini MBA