What are place brands? What is place branding? What is the difference between place and national brands? How is place branding linked to public diplomacy? Find answers in below collection of theories, concepts and definitions linked to the image, perception, reputation and branding of places – cities, countries, regions, destinations, nations.
Definition of place branding
For place branding to be successful, it needs to be understood as a strategic, holistic concept which goes beyond creating logos, slogans and marketing. Robert Govers and Frank Go (in their 2009 book) put it as follows:
Place branding: The process of discovering, creating, developing and realizing ideas and concepts for reconstructing place identities, their defining traits and ‘genius loci’ and subsequently building the sense of place, by efforts and investments in hardware (e.g. infrastructure, buildings), software (e.g. events, stories), orgware (e.g. co-operative organisational structuring) and virtual ware (e.g. symbols and symbolic actions, websites).
Place branding principles
Get to know five place branding principles for successful brand development or management for cities, regions, destinations or nations.
In a nutshell: key concepts explained
Browse our collection of place brand theory posts or view our latest posts on key concepts relevant for the work of place brand professionals:
- Conceptual Clarity on the Difference Between Place Promotion, Marketing and Branding: Martin Boisen
- The Nordic Wave in Place Branding | New Book
- Place Branding Research Priorities 2019: Key Questions and Knowledge Gaps
Reading lists for students and researchers
Theories, concepts and definitions of the terms brand and branding, their meaning and functions – as discussed in academic literature.
Why are some people so convinced and optimistic about nation brands, and others so critical and disapproving of only the thought that one could brand a nation? This page introduces the different perspective on nation branding – from market-oriented, functional, to political (public diplomacy), to cultural-critical – as discussed in academic literature.
Review of academic literature on the differences and similarities between the concepts of place branding and nation branding.
Theories, concepts and definitions of place perceptions, their image and reputation, and the factors influencing them – as discussed in academic literature.
What is a place? Or a tourist destination? How come our perceptions of the same place or destination can differ considerably? Some thoughts on our perceptions of destinations and places, and how they are constructed, influenced by discourse, for example, the ways in which they are portrayed in the media.
What role does the mass media play with regard to our perceptions of certain places, and how do news coverage or social media representations influence the image and reputation of places such as countries, cities, regions or destinations? Here is what academic literature has to say about media representations of places.
Introduction of nations as ‘imagined communities’ and national identity as influenced and constructed by discourse, language, the media – as discussed in academic literature.
Review of academic literature on green brands and branding based on environmental and sustainability credentials; functional and emotional components of green brand positioning, reasons for increase in green branding, and a mild warning not to succumb to greenwashing.
Review of academic literature on the importance and meaning of place brand integrity, credibility, and authenticity.
Some thoughts in academic literature on what legitimacy is, why perceived brand legitimacy is so important, and the role political and business leadership plays in maintaining brand legitimacy.