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II.Analysis1.Airbnb business model in comparison to larger hotels and other bed and breakfastformatsAirbnb business modelCustomer segments of Airbnb include two main groups: hosts and travelers.[Air17] Thehosts are people who own a property, with a mean age of 35 and an average or low income(since as the study shows almost half of the Airbnb hosts audience – 42%, uses the rentearning to cover everyday life expenses.[Got] Apart from property ownership there are othercharacteristics that the hosts have. The property has to have some excess capacity and theyhave to be willing to rent it out. Among the psychological portrait ofthe target host it is easy to find the word “independent”. This belongs to the lifestyle element
3of a typical Airbnb host. They would like to stay independent from estate brokers and maybeeven fixed working hours. The goal of money-making does not necessarily has to be the first;some say they enjoy meeting new people.[zun15] Under this category a particular groupconsists of hostels or small Bed & Breakfast hotels who can list on Airbnb according to thesite rules. Bigger hotels are also using Airbnb as marketing tool and list their rooms.[Sar15][Lau15]“Travelers” consumer segment is mainly represented by young people (but not necessarily)with average or below average income with certain view to life and particular lifestyle. Themain goal of such travelers is not necessarily comfort, but the involvement into local cultureand surroundings. They also have to be technologically up-to-date and flexible up to a certainpoint in their travel arrangements. Same as in the “hosts” category, Airbnb also offers abusiness solution for travelers. This includes unconventional stay spots for business trips anddirectchargingforcompaniesthatarepartoftheprogram.Value proposition of Airbnb can be described in general and also specifically for differentcustomer groups. Airbnb offers a platform that connects the hosts and the travelers andenables both to satisfy their need in a convenient, efficient and trustworthy manner.Additionally, to hosts Airbnb offers a lower fee than other rental sources, an extremely broadaudience and a chance to meet and greet people from all over the world. To travelers Airbnbgives an opportunity to stay in an individual space for a relatively cheap price and experiencethe local life of the place they wish to visit. Apart from that, Airbnb lists some unconventionalplaces of stay that are hard to find otherwise (examples could be a castle, a tree house or ahouseboat).Airbnb main sales and distribution channels are Airbnb site and applications for mobiledevices. The payment methods are various from a card payment to Apple Pay through theapplication. They also include local payment systems such as Alipay in China, BoletoBancário in Brazil and iDEAL for Netherlands. As for communication channels, the mainmode of promotion for Airbnb is content marketing. Content marketing is a marketing