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  • Patrice Adams

The Power of Product Marketing: How Airbnb's Categories Campaign is Revolutionizing Travel

Let’s talk about the innovative company that disrupted the hospitality industry – Airbnb. Since its launch in 2008, Airbnb has been consistently evolving its services to cater to its diverse audience. And one such evolution is the introduction of its categories campaign, which has brought about significant changes to the way travelers discover unique homes.

Airbnb Categories

In 2022, Airbnb introduced Airbnb Categories, an initiative that helped millions of travelers find homes they never knew existed. The aim was to let customers not only explore new places but also tap into their interests and hobbies. For instance, if you enjoy cooking, wouldn't you want to stay in a home with a chef’s kitchen? Of course, you would! Airbnb Categories makes it possible.

But, Why?

Why did Airbnb introduce categories? The company faced the challenge of limited options in various locations, with the same few homes always in high demand. To diversify its inventory, Airbnb needed to tap into what its customers liked. Therefore, instead of solely focusing on location, the customer journey shifted to property types (such as castles), main features (like chef’s kitchens), or activities (such as skiing).

airbnb categories
Airbnb website

The TV Campaign With The Loudest Dial Tone

Earlier this year, Airbnb introduced a new set of categories, including Farms, Chef's Table, Skiing, and Islands to cater to different traveler segments. Within its new categories campaign, Airbnb released a brilliantly crafted TV commercial that perfectly tells the story of a guy and his group of friends looking to disconnect from everyday life. Queue the Voicemail commercial that perfectly promotes the Islands category.

What makes this commercial so brilliant is the dial tone that plays in the background. It's highly relatable, especially when you’re on vacation and need to temporarily tune out everyday responsibilities and distractions. The commercial ends with a generic voicemail message. The Categories campaign continues with each section having its own commercial, highlighting unique features with curated soundtracks.

A Job Well Done

Airbnb’s Categories campaign has been a great success, demonstrating the power of a data-driven approach to categorization, creativity, and a multi-channel approach to creating a successful product marketing campaign. Moreover, it ensures that customers can easily find the perfect place to stay, no matter their preferences or activities.


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