AirBnb dealt with copycats through a combination of strategic decision-making, product innovation, and focused execution.
One way AirBnb dealt with copycats was by focusing on their unique value proposition and staying true to their original mission. They recognized the importance of building trust with users and designed features such as user profiles, secure payment systems (inspired by platforms like Facebook and PayPal), and review systems (inspired by Yelp) to foster trust among users .
Furthermore, AirBnb took a proactive approach to fight off copycats, conducting "an all-out war" against competitors who cloned their product. They launched in-person community meetups, built local operations teams, created playbooks for different regions, and engaged in aggressive acquisition and recruitment strategies .
In some cases, AirBnb also faced the option of acquiring the copycat companies, but ultimately chose not to pursue that route, as they believed it would compromise their culture and the original idea behind AirBnb .
Additionally, AirBnb's response to copycats was influenced by their focus on the long-term and making decisions that aligned with their mission and company values. They recognized that the best revenge against a clone was to let the clone run the company long-term, while staying true to their own vision .
Overall, AirBnb's successful response to copycats involved a combination of focusing on their unique value proposition, staying true to their original mission, implementing innovative features to build trust, engaging in aggressive competition strategies, and making long-term decisions that aligned with their company values .