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Re-branding the High Street: The place branding process and reflections from three UK towns

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journal contribution
posted on 19.12.2017, 10:19 by Nikos Ntounis, Mihalis Kavaratzis
Purpose The main aim of this paper is to develop a holistic understanding of place branding and reflect on its practical value and implications, by drawing evidence from the rebranding process of three UK towns (Alsager, Altrincham and Holmfirth) that participated in the HSUK2020 project. Design/methodology/approach A comprehensive place branding process that includes the interrelated stages of research, deliberation, consultation, action and communication is presented. The practical value of this theoretical proposition is linked to the experiences of three UK towns that participated in the HSUK2020 project. Findings The importance of research, the challenges of participation and the role of communications in place branding processes were identified as primary issues in all towns. The results of the project demonstrate the significance of the initial research stage of the place branding process and show that the process as a whole is valuable in helping places deal effectively with identity issues. Research limitations/implications Participatory place branding processes can flourish when place stakeholders are engaged in the right context and are encouraged to work together. In addition, place brands are important cues and empower stakeholders’ participation in all stages of place brand processes. Practical implications Knowledge exchange projects that have the potential to engage a plethora of place stakeholders should be considered by practitioners for future place branding strategies. Originality/value The paper offers a refreshing practical grounding on participatory place branding concepts and theories. The value of knowledge exchange strategies for examining the field of place branding is also highlighted and can become a useful research approach for future research.

Funding

The authors gratefully acknowledge the support of the Economic and Social Research Council and the High Street UK 2020 Grant (ES/L005182/1) which has funded this research.

History

Citation

Journal of Place Management and Development, 2017,10(4), pp.392-403

Author affiliation

/Organisation/COLLEGE OF SOCIAL SCIENCES, ARTS AND HUMANITIES/School of Business

Version

VoR (Version of Record)

Published in

Journal of Place Management and Development

Publisher

Emerald

issn

1753-8335

Acceptance date

21/06/2017

Copyright date

2017

Available date

19/12/2017

Publisher version

http://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/full/10.1108/JPMD-12-2015-0056

Language

en

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