In Sweden there’s a constitutional right they call allemansrätten. It’s a national concept of “freedom to roam” that allows anyone the right to access, walk, cycle, or camp on any land (the only exceptions being private residences, as well as gardens and lands under cultivation). To get the rest of the world to try it out, they just listed the entire country on Airbnb.
It appears that Sweden’s tourism is in the throes of a marketing contest. Last year the Swedish Tourist Association with agency Ingo created “The Swedish Number,” that allowed anyone, anywhere in the world, to dial in and be connected to a random Swede to chat about the country. Now Visit Sweden (the country’s global marketing department) working with agency Forsman & Bodenfors, is getting its own brand buzz with the help of Airbnb.
There are nine different “listings,” ranging from a rustic forest retreat in Varmland on the country’s west coast, to cliffs with panoramic ocean views close to Skuleskogen National Park.
According to Visit Sweden, it’s the first partnership of its kind with Airbnb, and, as gimmicks go, let’s hope there isn’t a rush of copycats. That said, it’s easy to imagine Airbnb jumping head first into allowing more tourism marketing like this the chance to target us directly from within the platform–for a price of course.
In this case, Jenny Kaiser, president of Visit Sweden’s US office, says the arrangement between Visit Sweden and Airbnb wasn’t a paid placement. “As the initiative is a pure branding campaign for Sweden as a destination, the partnership is strategic for both parties and no payment has been done from/to either side,” Kaiser says.