Interview with Helena Nordström on Place Branding in Sweden and Characteristics of Successful Place Brands

Helena Nordström, place branding blogger and consultant in Sweden, in this interviews shares her thoughts on the characteristics of successful place brands and the role of technology.

Learn about:

  • What inspired Helena Nordström to focus her Swedish consulting business on place branding;
  • Key ingredients for building a successful place brand;
  • The role of technology in place branding;
  • Her favorite place branding project so far.

Helena, with your background in graphic design and media production, what brought you to place branding and what is it that inspires you to work in this field?

When I was studying at university, I actually wanted to become an Art Director. After an exchange semester in the UK within graphic design, I though realized that I am more suitable for a more general role within branding.

In 2003, I made my master thesis about the branding of Sweden. I went to New York City and interviewed people working with the image of Sweden - and I was hooked!

Since then I have, for example, worked as the Marketing Manager of Destination Jönköping. In 2011 I founded the blog and in 2013 I made a company out of it. Today I run Placebrander together with my business partner Anna Österlund.

I find place branding challenging and a field hard to master. Actually, I don’t think I ever will be fully trained. And I love the fact that I am continuously learning together with my clients.

It is often believed that people from the design and communication department conceive place branding as a question of logos and taglines. Is this still the case, in your experience? And how can we change this misconception?

I come across this misconception more often among politicians and people without any knowledge at all within branding. The only way to change this is to spread knowledge about place branding.

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The Editorial Team

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