Merely six weeks ago, Music Dealers received a call from our dear friend and former VP of Marketing for Coca-Cola, Jonathan Mildenhall, who had recently been appointed the new CMO of Airbnb. After collaborating with Music Dealers on award-winning music campaigns during his tenure at Coke, Jonathan knew that music, a new terrain for the brand, would be an integral part of the re-brand for Airbnb. He decided to make the creation of a custom brand anthem his first order of business upon joining the Airbnb team.
Airbnb introduces the Bélo: the story of a symbol of belonging & their custom song, “Follow Me”.
When Jonathan explained the Airbnb ethos of “belonging,” the message resonated instantly. To up-and-coming artists, the feeling of “belonging” is very important, so when Music Dealers began to search for the perfect song that mirrored the spirit of Airbnb, we received an overwhelmingly positive response from our artists.
After only a few rounds of demos, we had several solid custom songs to present to the client. Among these options was a sweet, intimate, honest song called “Follow Me” by UK-based band, Moth & The Flame. This song, Airbnb’s selection, perfectly embodied the message of “belonging,” while capturing the essence of the brand.
Airbnb Chief Product Officer & Co-Founder, Joe Gebbia, explained that, over the past year, while he had looked at the re-brand in so many ways, he had been looking visually. Suddenly, with the new medium of music introduced, the connection to the message instantly became much more powerful. This was music to our ears and is exactly what we strive to do with every campaign that we touch.
Based on the success of the song, Airbnb decided to do more with both the artist and the song than intended. With no time to spare, Music Dealers quickly got to work finalizing the master recording and producing a music video for the song, filmed at an exquisite Airbnb listing in London.
To heighten the launch further, Airbnb flew the band from London to their cool office in San Francisco to partake in the big event. On July 16th, in a thoughtfully executed brand launch, Airbnb introduced a unified brand identity, a new logo, a custom color, a new, more modern website, and the custom-created brand song, “Follow Me”.
At the event, Moth & The Flame was introduced by Jonathan Mildenhall, who shared the beautiful sentiment that the voice of Lucy, the lead singer, “breaks your heart and mends it all at once”. The Airbnb staff was giddy with excitement as the band performed a sublime six-song set, concluding with a live performance of “Follow Me” and a champagne toast.
Moth & The Flame, Airbnb’s marketing team, and CMO Jonathan Mildenhall.
Music Dealers would like to send a special thank you to the whole Airbnb team for being such wonderful hosts during our stay in San Francisco. This is just the beginning of a beautiful partnership between MD and Airbnb; and frankly, there is nobody that we’d rather BNBed with!
By: Lyndsey Ager, Music Dealers