Live Anywhere on Airbnb is looking for 12 individuals with up to three companions each to live exclusively in listings on Airbnb for one year. Airbnb will provide accommodation and a transportation allowance for the duration of the program. Sound interesting?
“Whether you are looking to join Zoom meetings by the beach, take your family on the ultimate road trip, or learn a new language in a favorite city—this program is for you. We’ll ask that you share your experiences with us which could help shape the future of travel and living on Airbnb.”
Because, says Airbnb, the “lines between traveling, living and working are blurring.”
For Wendy Swenson, Marketing Director at Destination Yellowstone, when the call came in May, “It was like OMG, this is huge. It was like Christmas morning.”
The pint-size DMO has only two full-time staff, two part-time staff, plus two year-round Visitor Information Center staff to serve nearly 200,000 visitors annually, assisted by seasonal staff.
Quite frankly, they’d come to accept a few realities during Covid-19. First of all, their funding was in jeopardy; secondly, just maintaining fair market share was a full-time responsibility; and thirdly, “We never win anything.” Then everything changed.
The Project MayDay: Tourism SOS contest from BowStern Marketing Communications (see The Travel Vertical, 3/9/2021) seemed beyond reach, but they went for it. On offer? One free year of marketing services valued at $250,000 to one destination. For Destination Yellowstone (West Yellowstone Chamber of Commerce/CVB), that would mean the fulfillment of a much-longed-for wish list: a fresh set of eyes, a website overhaul, a new logo and more.
The shortlist candidates went through Zoom interviews with the Tallahassee-based agency. Up in Montana at the gateway to West Yellowstone, President/CEO Katrina Wiese, Wendy, and the team were on pins and needles.
“As our country begins to recover and reopen, we know that the ripple effects felt within the tourism industry will be long lasting,” said Tom Derzypolski, president and co-founder of BowStern. “As a marketing agency that has the ability to help a destination bounce back more quickly – we felt a responsibility and calling to use our powers for good. Ultimately, this free marketing support will translate into jobs and an economic revitalization for these communities.” Boom!
P.S. BowStern tells The Travel Vertical they “felt compelled” to help other DMOs that needed support as well. The other three DMOs receiving support via in-kind marketing services are: Martin County (FL), Visit Rochester (NY) and Visit Bellevue (WA).