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Airbnb Turns to Instagram for Second Crowdsourced Marketing Campaign

Skift Take

With the combination of local advice and low-cost production, this type of campaign fits well within Airbnb’s sweet spot.

— Samantha Shankman

Airbnb is turning to Instagram to crowdsource its second video marketing campaign. The new “AirbnbShorts” projects asks participants to use Instagram to upload 15-second videos that inspire people to visit their city.

The videos will be judged on their creativity and depth of local knowledge by a team of programmers from the Sundance Film Festival. One winner will then receive a flight to London, credits towards one week’s stay in Airbnb properties, and a seat at the Sundance Institute’s Shorts Workshop.

The project is part of Airbnb’s sponsorship of the Sundance Film Festival, and launches less than a month after rival vacation rental giant HomeAway filed suit accusing Airbnb of misappropriating its birdhouse trademark for its a multi-million dollar U.S. advertising campaign. The case was settled out of court and Airbnb’s campaign stopped as of January 3.

This is Airbnb’s second time crowdsourcing videos as part of its Sundance sponsorship. Earlier this fall it unveiled a short “Hollywood & Vines” made entirely out of 6-second Vines.

When asked what Airbnb plans to do with the submissions, Airbnb head of content Vivek Wagle responded, “By the end of this contest, we will have provided access to hundreds of inspiring short films documenting what makes people passionate about their cities. You can imagine the possibilities.”

Approximately 400 Instagram videos have been tagged with the #AirbnbShorts hashtag so far. A few examples are embedded below.

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