By Nancy,

The Olympics 2016 has just kicked off in Rio with the UK already winning four medals, including a bronze from Devon’s own Tom Daley! This year for the first time we have seen the introduction of the ‘Alternative Accommodation Provider’ as an official partner of the games. This service is being provided by the online marketplace Airbnb, who have offered spectators 20,000 rooms, villas and houses in the city through local hosts.

Along with the accommodation, the American company has also brought us a very personal, down to earth marketing campaign centering around the phrase ‘stay with me’ or ‘Seja Meu Hóspede’ if you’re in Rio. The company has released a series of three adverts each featuring a different airbnb host, Daniel, Bernado and Malu. The ad is formed from a collection of photos, put together to show the hosts traveling along, enjoying Rio and interacting with their guests. Although the adverts are not overly sport focused, the hosts can be seen cycling and playing judo, hitting a huge theme in many Olympic based campaigns, which is the unity between the athletes and the normal person.

The ad is refreshing in its authenticity. Maria Rodriguez, head of global consumer communications at Airbnb, says that the proposal was ‘”No scripts, no actors, just our community at its best. The result was three unique stories that together create an invitation for the world to stay with our hosts and see the real Rio.”

It really catches the laid back, fun and friendly atmosphere that Rio is known for, something that I’m sure the country is wanting to remind people of in light of the current political and social situation. It is forging relationships and friendships between different people of different nationalities, which is essentially the spirit of the Olympic games.

All three adverts finish with the host telling the audience the campaign catchphrase ‘stay with me’ which is carried over onto social media. The hashtag, #SejaMeuHóspede, has been tagged in over 300 posts on Instagram by hosts in Rio welcoming people into their homes. The initiative is a great way to allow Rio residents to feel like part of the games and tell their stories.

Furthering the relationship between Airbnb and the games, ABC reported this week that Nastia Liukin, an American Olympian listed her Boston apartment on Airbnb for the time she will be in Rio. Well if it’s good enough for a gold medallist!

Watch the adverts here: