Distribution

Inside Airbnb's 'guerrilla war' against local governments

Mar 20, 2019 / Airbnb
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Shutterstock

From Nashville to New Orleans to Honolulu, Airbnb is battling local officials over requests to collect occupancy taxes and ensure that the properties listed on its site comply with zoning and safety rules.

In the past five months alone, the company has spent nearly $1 million to overturn regulations in San Diego and has sued Boston, Miami, and Palm Beach County over local ordinances that require Airbnb to collect taxes or remove illegal listings. Elsewhere, Airbnb has fought city officials over regulations aimed at preventing homes from being transformed into de facto hotels and requests from tax authorities for more specific data about hosts and visits.

Airbnb is engaged in “a city-by-city, block-by-block guerrilla war” against local governments, says Ulrik Binzer, CEO of Host Compliance, which helps cities draft and enforce rules for short-term rentals, sometimes putting it at odds with hosting platforms. “They need to essentially fight every one of these battles like it is the most important battle they have.”

Related: Ruling deals setback to Airbnb, HomeAway in fights with cities

Digital Marketing

Pinterest, Airbnb find brand synergy with co-produced travel guide

Mar 20, 2019 / Pinterest
Marketing Drive
Marketing Drive

Pinterest and Airbnb teamed up on a travel guide for spring and summer that includes travel hacks and trends for different types of vacations.

Nature travel is a top trend for 2019, with Pinterest searches for "nature travel" up 88%, and Airbnb reports a 539% year-over-year increase on nature-related bookings, 367% on meditation and 655% on hiking.

"Budget travel" searches have increased 64% on Pinterest, "space travel" 70% and "sustainable travel" 56%. "Dog-friendly vacation" searches are up 146% on Pinterest, and Airbnb offers 1.3 million pet-friendly locations worldwide.

Distribution

Industry likes the term 'travel advisor,' but Google doesn't

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Shutterstock

ASTA and the travel retail community are both finding they still have to use the term "travel agent" to drive online traffic.

In the wake of ASTA rebranding itself as the American Society of Travel Advisors last year, the industry has, for the most part, embraced the term "travel advisor" over "travel agent."

"Travel agent" has consistently ranked higher than "travel advisor" and other terms commonly used since 2004, the earliest year tracked by Google Trends.

The Society's push to make "travel advisor" the standard industry term got a boost earlier this year with an open letter from a number of players, including consortia and suppliers, encouraging the use of "travel advisor."

Digital Marketing

Google fined €1.49BN in Europe for antitrust violations in search ad brokering

Mar 20, 2019 / Google
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Shutterstock

The latest fine relates to its search ad brokering business, which involves Google selling advertising space related to searches carried out on third party websites.

EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager said the search giant - “by far the biggest” search ad broker in the region, with its AdSense platform taking a share in Europe of “well above 70% since 2006” - had engaged in illegal practices in order to “cement its dominant market position”.

Google’s “restrictive clauses” worked directly against rivals scaling by creating “a vicious circle” of limited options for websites to sell ad space - forcing them “solely to rely on Google”.

Related: Google’s travel services aren’t a focus of European regulators just yet

Digital Marketing

How to choose the right attribution model

Mar 20, 2019 / Analytics
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Shutterstock

Just because last click is the default model in Google Analytics and most other platforms doesn’t make it the best for how you should measure your performance.

Attribution seems like the deep end of the pool in which no digital marketers want to swim. Mostly because it’s hard to know where to start, and we’ve built our collective lives around analyzing last click data.

If you can muster the courage to choose an attribution model in Google Analytics (besides the default last click), it can reward your business in many ways, including: Better budget allocation for paid media initiatives, better prioritization of content projects, and better utilization of house lists, email and social alike.

It would help if you began somewhere. Usually, that means moving away from the last click. Literally, any other attribution model tells a more complete story about your marketing efforts than last click attribution, because it takes away credit from the “Direct” channel.

Distribution

A UK hotelier’s guide to promotions & pricing in 2019

Mar 20, 2019 / 80 DAYS (sponsored)
80 DAYS
80 DAYS

What can UK hotel marketers do to ensure their offers are compliant with the CAP’s advertising codes of conduct and avoid an ASA complaint being upheld against you?

The regulations state that advertisers/hoteliers must be able to demonstrate that a significant proportion of products are available at the stated “from” or promotional price.

Of course, ‘significant proportion’ and ‘availability’ are both open to interpretation. The ASA state that “consumers should have a reasonable chance of obtaining the products at the advertised price”. But what can be considered ‘reasonable’?

Products & Services

How hotels can use their authority to drive more bookings

Mar 20, 2019 / Fuel Travel (sponsored)
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Shutterstock

Be known for something - guests want to know what the hotel is all about, how is it unique, how do you contribute to the community, environment.

Take a stance and stand for something that is going to differentiate you from all the others and then market it.

Branding on different authority platforms shows you are always being talked about. People want to check out what’s hot and different and willing to pay more money for an experience.