Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations | PropTech Startup Idea


This PropTech Startup Idea from the 1001 Startup Ideas collection of YoStartups is to make a platform like Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations. The business idea is to make an online peer-to-peer platform for professional photographers and moviemakers to book shoot locations. The model will be an offshoot of the sharing economy, more like Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Location.

Market Definition for 1001 Startup Ideas – Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations

According to, the global film industry is set to post healthy growth in the coming years, as the global box office revenue is forecasted to increase from about 38 billion USD in 2016 to nearly 50 billion USD in 2020. With 1.2 billion tickets sold in the US alone in 2016, it is the third largest film market in the world, only after China and India.

The actual market size is much more as the above-mentioned figure only includes the mainstream movies that are released in theatres. Additionally, there would be a large number of regional movies and art films, which can provide a huge market for the proposed idea.

Competitor Analysis for 1001 Startup Ideas – Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations

While there are several online portals around the world, which helps in, scouting and finding shoot locations for movies and photo-shoots, there are not many platforms that work on the shared economy model.

We only see a few startups from the US and UK that is working on the similar model as proposed in this idea. Wrapal is one such USA based company, revolutionizing the location scouting process by connecting filmmakers and photographers that need locations with property owners who need to make extra income. They help in finding locations in New York and Los Angeles.

Shootfactory is another similar company headquartered in the UK, which helps property owners to list their properties on their platform so that filmmakers and photographers can rent them for their projects.

Pain Point and Target Audience for 1001 Startup Ideas – Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations

The target audience for the startup would be filmmakers and professional photographers who are looking for budget locations for their shoot.

As a filmmaker, one of the biggest challenges is to find a suitable location, which flows with the scene requirements and fall within the budget as well. For longer shoots, they often end up building their own sets, but building a set is not a feasible solution for shooting a limited number of scenes or shots and at times building a set is out of the question for small and mid-budget movies and photo-shoots.

Local scouting agents come as the only solution for the filmmakers who suggest locations from their limited pool of options, and as there are limited options, filmmakers end up paying a premium for the property. There is no centralized platform to screen and tag all the properties with their complete portfolio; the filmmakers even end up visiting dozens of these locations to verify their suitability making it a time-consuming and tedious process.

Value Proposition for 1001 Startup Ideas – Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations

Like all the shared economy models, the startup will create value for both filmmakers and property owners.

Filmmakers will get a single platform with a large repository of pre-screened shoot locations that are verified for location photos and available amenities. As the platform will directly connect both the parties without the involvement of scouting agents, the booking price for the property will be very economical.

For property owners, they get an additional avenue for generating revenue by occasional renting of their place. The owner can choose his schedule when he would want to make his property available for rent, giving him better control. As an added perk, the owner may get some free makeover of his property, as film crew at times renovate the property to make it more suitable for their project.

Business Model for 1001 Startup Ideas – Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations

The startup will work on peer-to-peer marketplace model where it will charge a commission on every successful transaction. The startup can also charge a fixed property on-boarding charge from the property owners, which would cover the basic cost of screening and certifying the property.

Way to Market for 1001 Startup Ideas – Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations

Without wasting too much time and resources, the startup should set up a standard marketplace platform using the ready-made solutions available in the market.

Once the platform is functional, the startup should onboard some of the artistic and antique properties on their platform. They should mainly focus on the properties, which are around the popular film shooting hubs, like New York, Los Angeles, Prague, Istanbul, etc. after which they should start approaching mid-level production houses with their property portfolio to get initial traction.

Key Milestones for 1001 Startup Ideas – Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations

The initial challenge for the startup would be to onboard and maintain a sufficient number of buyers and sellers on the platform so as to simulate an online marketplace. The startup should target to onboard atleast 500 properties in first 6 months, with around 100 monthly transactions by the sixth month.

By the end of the year, the startup should cover atleast top-5 cities, which are popular among filmmakers in the country of launch; and onboard upto 2000 properties.

Investment Needed for Prototyping | Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations

The startup should look for raising upto 100k USD from angel investors or specialized accelerators in the shared economy and marketplace model. Although some money will go into platform customization, the majority of the fund should be used in property onboarding and business development among filmmakers and production houses.

Team Capability | Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations

The founding team must include a member with experience of working with a production house, which will help in getting access to the network of filmmakers. You also need to have a social media marketing and SEO expert to make the brand trending on the internet.

Investor/Expert Take | Airbnb for Booking Film Shoot Locations

Finding a right location has always been a time-consuming process for a production team. Technological advancements in VFX and 3D animation have made life little easier for the crew, but still, directors prefer a real location if they could get one to give life to the shots.

The proposed idea has a good market, but a lot of attention needs to be given in property screening and putting portfolio, as filmmakers can be very particular about what they are looking for. It would be a good idea to include virtual reality tour for the properties to give a better perspective about the space, and it would also be a big differentiating factor from the traditional location-scouting agents.

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This 1001 startup ideas article is from Yostartups, YoStartups is a Pre Accelerator, and it empowers entrepreneurs to propel their business ideas into successful ventures. Yostartups’ core mission is to take the message of entrepreneurship to 1 billion people globally by 2020.

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