2019 Jersey City

Airbnb Referendum

Challenge:

In 2019, the Jersey City Council passed an ordinance imposing regulations on short-term rentals designed to protect quality of life. Airbnb fought back, eventually forcing a public referendum vote seeking to invalidate the ordinance. They backed it up with a multimillion dollar campaign, flooding mailboxes, the airwaves and more with messages calling the ordinance a ban and calling on voters to stop it.

 

What We Did:

Direct Mail

Campaign Literature

Signage

Strategic Consulting

Branding

Our Approach

Hired by the New York Hotel Trades Council to handle the direct mail portion of the VOTE YES campaign, we knew that we would be massively outspent and that our mail had to stand out from a literal stack of mailers from our opponent. Instead of running a more traditional campaign, we decided to adopt friendly pastel colors and use a vintage postcard style to appeal to Jersey City pride.

It was important for us to highlight the core issues at play in the election.

More Strangers

Less Parking

More Trash

Results:

The first ever loss in a referendum vote for Airbnb, and a victory for our client. Our work resulted in a nomination for a 2019 Stanley F. Reed award.