Issues Campaign: Affordable Housing

CLIENT: Share Better Coalition

CAMPAIGN: Save Our Housing

Lay of the land

After a long, multi-year campaign that we created with the goal of raising public awareness and building support for stronger regulations of the short-term rental industry in order to protect affordable housing stock in NYC, 2018 set the stage for the culmination of all our hard work – the potential passage of groundbreaking legislative reforms. 


How we changed the dynamic

Through MPS’s strategic execution of a robust and coordinated program of earned and paid media ad placements, digital and grassroots advocacy, message development and data-driven audience targeting and other online education tactics that helped create a fertile environment for change. Ultimately, we achieved a stunning victory with the passage of groundbreaking legislative reforms that will have a drastic and lasting impact on New York’s tourism and housing market, significantly inhibiting the ability of Airbnb and other short-term rental platforms to pull tourism dollars away from traditional hotels and other local attractions while helping preserve vital affordable housing stock for the local area residents.


Value Delivered
  • Full campaign creative production, including multiple videos and sets of graphics

  • Creation of targeting models, using a combination of consumer and industry data to tailor messaging to key demographic and geographic audiences.

  • Development and execution of a strategy that included not just paid and earned media, but grassroots advocacy tactics such as tele-town halls, canvassing and petitioning programs.

  • Achieved multi-year campaign goal of stricter regulations on Short-Term Rental services to protect affordable housing for New Yorkers.

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They’re out to gut Airbnb.


A bill being drafted in the City Council could sound a death knell for online home-sharing services in the Big Apple. The measure would require Airbnb and its competitors to provide the Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement with the addresses of all their listings.


Hosts would have to hand over their names and addresses, as well as report whether they are renting just a room or the entire unit — information that many tenants would be loathe to share with the government.


A similar law in San Francisco led to an immediate 50 percent drop in Airbnb listings, with 10,000 posted in August 2017 and just 5,500 in January 2018 when the measure took effect, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

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Airbnb’s growing influence caused rents to increase significantly in tourist areas and gentrifying neighborhoods in Manhattan and Brooklyn, where the majority of the company’s rentals are concentrated, according to a report released on Thursday by the city comptroller’s office.

Airbnb makes it easy to rent apartments to tourists, taking units off the market for full-time residents, the report said.


“For years, New Yorkers have felt the burden of rents that go nowhere but up, and Airbnb is one reason why,” the city comptroller, Scott M. Stringer, said in an interview. “It’s just simply supply and demand. Fewer apartments to rent means higher prices, and that’s the Airbnb effect.”


The report said that Airbnb’s influence cost New Yorkers $616 million in additional rent in 2016 as a result of price pressures.

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