Drawing on the services marketing and sharing economy literature, the study identifies the leading reputational attributes that boost popularity of the services offered in sharing platforms. The purpose of this paper is to examine the role and influence of personal reputation and product description in popularity building in the context of collaborative consumption. A sample of Airbnb listings was collected in November 2016 in Italy and UK (n=502). The database consists of popularity variables along with host reputational attributes and the description of the product. The findings of the study, based on the Shapley Value Regression, suggest that host attributes are of paramount importance, explaining alone almost 40% of popularity variation. The paper concludes with theoretical implications on self-branding and, given the importance weights of the different attributes in popularity building, practical implications for sellers operating in peer-to-peer platforms.
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