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City Branding Essentials


  • Was ist City Branding?
  • Warum ist City Branding wichtig?
  • Was ist bei der Durchführung eines City Branding Projektes zu bedenken?

Wherever life has brought you today, you more than probably keep fond memories of your hometown or your birthplace. It is a very personal and intimate journey for every single person. How do you infuse such an affectionate feeling to the visitors of this particular city? This intangible moment is also very much related to city branding.

What does city branding mean?

  • It is the reputation of a place
  • It is the associations it evokes when people hear its name
  • It is the intangible bond people have developed with the city, both locals and visitors.

City branding lays in the art of creating a positive perception of a place in which people want to live or visit, or do business. It is the unique character of the city is what makes it different from the rest of the world.

What are the benefits of conducting a dedicated city branding project?

  • The branding will, in fact, be the tangible visualisation of the city management forward-thinking efforts in creating a better image and future for the city. It is the actual proof that the municipality is actively working towards the city development.
  • It gives the city management tools to attract more visitors
  • It could draw more investment interest (and subsequently create more employment opportunities)
  • It lays the foundations of more cultural and social occasions for the city – events, celebrations, local holidays, etc.
  • It adds to the locals’ pride and reassurance of being citizens of a progressive and developing city with vision and determination to stay current and active
  • It creates better awareness for local production, local brands and manufacture
  • It narrates in a more engaging way the local history, heritage, customs and traditions
  • City branding speaks directly to younger audiences, who openly embrace new concepts and tastes. It makes the city more desirable to the young generation by addressing their thirst for modernity and keeping pace with the new and the future while staying iconic and not depending on time or short-term trends.
  • It conveys the city culture in a very smooth and engaging way, making it easy to understand and to support.
  • It preserves and guards the city’s symbols and local heritage.

If you wish to embark on the exhilarating journey of branding your city, keep in mind these pieces of advice:

  • Stay assertive and determined, as this is a long project with many stakeholders and the process is not always easy
  • Choose the right team for such assignment, as you need people with different competencies, hierarchy in the management system and personal stress management and communication skills
  • Prepare retro planning and stick with the timings
  • Consider a budget that will encompass all related activities. You may be able to get funds from EU programs or other supporting organisations
  • Be bold and opportunistic, as such a project is there to stay and its outcome will leave a mark for the generations to come. It is also just the beginning, as it creates endless opportunities for your city in the future and the hard work will pay off with more hard work in the first place, but also with many positive outcomes for your city.


About the author

Raya Drenski, Head of Business Development, INTO Branding

Raya Drenski has more than ten years of experience in business development, while working in the fields of branding, communication and design. This experience helps her in achieving strong and productive collaborations with clients, which eventually lead to profit and growth.

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