June 05, 2013 09:00 ET

Airbnb, Hipmunk Lead in Market Love: NetBase Brand Passion Index Analyzes Online Travel Sites

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA--(Marketwired - Jun 5, 2013) - NetBase, the Social Intelligence Company, today announced the latest Brand Passion Index (BPI) analyzed seven travel booking sites in anticipation of summer vacation planning. Powered by the Insight Composer, the Index revealed the behaviors, emotions and opinions expressed across web and social media channels about Expedia, Airbnb, Priceline, Orbitz, Hotwire, Travelocity, and Hipmunk.

Among the well-known online travel brands, startups Airbnb and Hipmunk stood out, stealing the hearts of social consumers. The NetBase analysis found Hipmunk to have the highest Passion Intensity (84) and Net Sentiment (73) scores. Despite generating only two percent of the overall travel booking chatter, consumers raved online about the ease of use and functionality of the Hipmunk website.

Airbnb had the second largest share of conversation with 22 percent of the total buzz, and the second largest Passion Intensity (77) and Net Sentiment (60) scores. The company's metrics took a slight dive after legislation in New York questioned the legality of the property-renting service. Still, online consumers took to social media to compliment the company's customer service and uniquely designed interface.

Well-established Expedia received the most mentions with 29 percent of the overall conversation. Despite being the most talked about brand, Expedia had the third highest Passion Intensity (51) and one of the lowest Net Sentiment scores (43), caused by complaints about its high prices and customer service.

Read what consumers are saying about Expedia:

Expedia has some truly awful customer service - tried three days in a row - I have sat on hold for 20+ minutes each time. #callmebackjerks

Expedia customer service was abominable. In the process of a simple matter of rescheduling a connection due to one airline changing its flight schedule, I spoke to over 10 representatives, spent 12 hours on the phone, had my flights fixed, then cancelled, then reinstated and then duplicated.

I thought the Expedia site was the most expensive. I rarely use travel operators as I don't find their prices competitive.

i've noticed expedia has become very expensive recently.

Read what consumers are saying about Hipmunk:

Hipmunk's price graph function is amazing! And the little chipmunk loading icon... too cute.

Hipmunk's airfare alerts are amazing. Love this service.

I love hipmunk for looking up flights. It is clear and concise.

Love hipmunk. I will never go back to the columns of times/numbers other sites show.

I love Hipmunk.. great aggregation site, and the giant charts are really useful when planning trips.

Read what consumers are saying about Airbnb:

Officially @airbnb has the BEST customer svc out there. Responsive&Timely, Personal&Authentic. Couldnt ask for more. Youve got a user for life!

So it seems the consensus is that @airbnb is the best thing ever. I'm sold.

Love the @Airbnb Xmas email I've just received. Quite original =).

I'm loving the new @Airbnb's web design. #goodjob

My experience with airbnb has been excellent. They also guarantee your money and say they will work hard to find an alternate place if your first one falls through.

Each month, the Brand Passion Index (BPI) analyzes consumer passion for brands in various categories and publishes the results on the NetBase blog. Register for our next Demo Day about social's favorite bottled water brands here.

About NetBase
NetBase delivers the social intelligence that global brands and agencies use to publish, monitor, analyze and engage with customers in real time. Using a high-precision natural language processing (NLP) engine our platform processes billions of social media posts to extract structured insights delivered via customizable dashboards. Our solutions enable digital marketing, public relations, brand management, customer service, sales, and product innovation leaders to craft winning strategies faster. Clients include Coca-Cola, Kraft, HP, ESPN, GfK, McCann Erickson and Taco Bell. NetBase solutions are sold globally by SAP AG and J.D. Power & Associates. For more information, visit, @NetBase, on Facebook page, LinkedIn, or YouTube.

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