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Ram Herstein and Eugene D. Jaffe Introduction Over the last quarter century, countries, cities and regions have been marketed and even branded as if they were products (Kotler and Gertner, 2002; Morgan et al., 2004; Papadopoulos, 2004; Ward, 1998). It appears that this marketing approach is derived from the Country-of-Origin Effect, which presents evidence that products bearing "Made in Japan" (cars, cameras and consumer electronics), "Made in France" (wines, perfume and clothing) or "Made in Italy" (furniture, shoes and sports cars) labels are commonly regarded as high quality, due to the reputation of these countries as top world manufacturers and exporters (Jaffe and Nebenzahl, 2001). Although marketers today already realize that places should be marketed and treated as brands, there are still differences beween marketing consumer products and marketing places. In constrast to consumer products, place prodcuts are considered to be more complex (Morgan et al., 2002) and therefore require a much more holistic approach (Kerr, 2006). According to Ashworth and Voogt (1990) there are three main differences between these two products. First, places exist both as holistic entities or nuclear products and as collections of contributory elements or individual services and facilities. Therfore, a place such as city can have an overall reputaion as an old industrial city, while idividual elements (musems, sports facilities, universities, shopping centers), can have their own individual reputations for totally independent reasons. Second, the place product can be assembled uniquely by each visitor from their experiences of a chosen set of individual contributory elements. Third, places are multi-functional and each place can offer historical buildings, shopping facilities, sports facilities and entertainment venues. These may all be consumed by the same consumer group such as residents or individually by different consumers with special interests. On the basis of these differences, Hankinson (2005) claims that the job of the destination marketer reqires first to select a portfolio from the individual elements to form the basis of a destination product, second, to assure controlover the product experience and third to appeal to different consumer segments. At present, marketers who cope with place branding work hard to create a unique image for their place. Marketers define the concept of a "place image" as the sum of the beliefs and impressions people hold about a place (Kotler et al., 1993). The image results from the place's geography, history, art and music, famous citizens and other 1
2007). 1998) and Western Australia (Crockett and Wood. Kotler et al.. 1998). Bradford (Trueman et al. Despite the fact that a lot of research has been conducted on the subject of city branding. 2001. and branding experts who participated in this process. 2004). Britain (Gilmore. Hall. Costa Rica. the advertising agency CEO. Countries for example are so functionally diverse that they are perceived in terms of the representational parts of their brand identity. In recent years. and in less than a decade succeeded to be branded as the 'Berlin of the Middle East' and become the most branded city in Israel (even more than the capital Jerusalem). 2002). there is still a need to learn more about those that have successfully changed from an anemic to a very defined and clear image. 2001). In order to attract tourists. Porter.. The interviews were held over four days in OctoberDecember 2008. 2002). 2007). 1999) and New Zealand (Morgan et al. countries such as Thailand (Nuttavuthisit. Anholt. According to Caldwell and Freire (2004) there are differences in the way that people perceive places. This case study explores the successful branding strategy of the city of Tel Aviv. Australia (Morgan and Pritchard. 2003) attempted to position themselves and promote a positive image. Yugoslavia (Hall. The first phase comprised semi-structured interviews (60-120 minutes each) with the Tel Aviv municipality spokesperson. that attracts young people from all over the country to experience and enjoy life that offers cultureactivities around the clock. Gould and Skinner. which until the early 1990's suffered from an anemic image of an old and crowded metropolis. 2000). 2004). 2003. 2007). Other nations that are also exhibiting pending efforts in marketing areas include Wales (Pritchard and Morgan. cities such as Glasgow (Daskou et al. The case study is based on both oral interviews and a collection of written data. 1997. Ireland (O'Leary and Deegan. being smaller in scale.features (Kotler and Gertner. many governments all over the world invest tremendous effort in creating a competitive advantage over other nations and cities (Gilmore. are perceived more from a functional point of view. These documents shed light on the 2 . 2001. 2003. companies and talented people and to find markets for their exports. During these interviews the experts were asked to answer several questions such as: What were the reasons for branding the city? What did this process demand from the planners? Who were the planners? What were their tasks? What were the phases of this process? How do you define this process in terms of success or failure? The second phase involved the collection and review of focus group surveys. Furthermore. factories.. whereas regions and cities. 1989).. 2007). 2004) and London (Hopper. Manchester (Ward. Turkey (Kemming and Sandikci. Moldova (Florek and Conejo. Spain (Gilmore. 2006) have designed new images.
The results of the SWOT analysis led the team to focus on young people. they conducted a SWOT analysis (Table 1). in particular. The person put in charge of the branding process was the municipality spokesperson. since they perceived the city as the cultural capital of the country. Therefore. Stage 1: City potential identification The professional team. first focused on identifying target markets. on the changes implemented in the marketing strategy between 1994 and 2009. the second largest city in Israel with an estimated population of 391. it became the most expensive city in the region and the 14th most expensive city in the world. who worked closely with a small local advertising agency and a public relations agency. both of which had experience in branding places and saw this business opportunity as a major challenge. and another secondary group: Young tourists mainly from western countries seeking a modern exciting Mediterranean vacation. Results of a telephone survey performed in 1994 among a representative sample of 1000 city inhabitants aged 18 and above and 500 inhabitants of adjacent cities showed that Tel Aviv was perceived mainly as an old. Its very high status attracted mainly well established elderly inhabitants. Tel Aviv. crowded. These results were the trigger for a professional branding process that the legendary former-mayor initiated in order to make the city much more attractive to segments other than elderly-established residents. Three groups were defined: Young people from both the city and from other regions and cities. Insert table 1 about here The next phase was to define the relevant target markets. It is considered the economic. consisting of the municipality spokesperson and the advertising agency people. The city is situated on the Israeli Mediterranean coastline and attracts more than half a million vehicles every day. A city without a break In April 2009.branding process and. as the demand for residence in Tel Aviv increased. This branding process took almost eight years and consisted of four main stages. but a cultural center. After identifying the relevant target 3 . The idea to market this city as a center for young people in Israel seemed to be realistic and logical. From its earliest days Tel Aviv was a central and crowded city that major local and foreign businesses and corporations were concentrated. each of which entailed several sub-phases.300 marked its 100th anniversary. During the years. cultural and academic capital of Israel and the Middle East's second biggest city economy.
the respondents were asked to note which of these associations was considered a negative or a positive one. restaurants and cinemas. youth movements). unique location. universities and colleges. This was done by association tests among these four focus groups by means of the question 'What are the first words that come to your mind when you think about Tel Aviv?' The results of this process indicated that the associations 'big city'. 'business facilities and buildings'. and Leisure. and 'Urban services' which were perceived as rich and very accessible (mainly because of convenient transportation).markets the next phase was to find how these segments perceived the city in terms of city image dimensions. Urban services (public transportation. 'Assets that relate to location or history of the city and provide its reputation' which described Tel Aviv as an attractive tourism place(mainly because of its wonderful seashore). 'elderly'. After conducting four focus groups with young people who lived in the city and outside and also with young tourists. stores. 'beautiful seashore' and 'cultural center' were the most positive (Figure 2). This positioning process was based on six city image dimensions: Atmosphere and aesthetics (quiet/noise. air pollution. crime level. country-clubs. lighting. the team decided to continue to the next phase which was identifying the current image of the city. proximity to other cities. parking. museums. The results of this phase indicated that the associations 'speed/tempo'. theaters and orchestras. public gardens. level of taxes). a feeling of physical security. the socio-economic level of the inhabitants). culture and entertainment facilities and services (stores and shopping centers. connection to the municipally. 'speed/tempo'. Human assets (celebrity inhabitants. Insert figure 2 about here 4 . Daily facilities (post offices and banks. city cleanliness. 'the center of the country'. tourism and vacation areas. 'the center of the country'. heritage. the results (Figure 1) indicated that the most powerful city image dimensions were 'Daily facilities' which were perceived as western and modern. 'crowded'. 'perfect seashore'. pubs. roads and pavements). In addition. offices and factories). and 'cultural center' were the most common. Insert figure 1 about here After finding the most important city image dimensions. density and overcrowding. NHS and hospitals. 'a center of bohemia'. At this point the team divided these associations to two groups: Physical and non-physical assets. Assets that relate to location or history of the city and provide its reputation (historical sites. education – schools and high schools. sports clubs. green zones. proximity to main roads). weather.
The second factors are the facilities. they first created a perceptional map of cities all over the world as they were perceived in terms of physical and non-physical assets (Figure 3). using Berlin as an example. More than that. the l team decided to create a perceptional map and to identify Tel Aviv's position. From the information that they collected from the focus groups they realized that the current position of Tel Aviv was at the bottom of the second quadrant. Therefore. The results of these four focus groups revealed that the most positive and meaningful associations were: 5 . public relation. Insert figure 3 about here Stage 2: Creation of the city's vision The second phase of the process was to create the city branding vision. and branding experts) and that these experts were available in Israel. facilities and money. The municipality spokesperson realized that he would have to bring together the best experts (advertising. Stage 3: The city image design The next required stage was to design the new image of Tel Aviv. which is a city with high physical assets and low non-physical assets. The professional team believed that Tel Aviv could be positioned in the future at the bottom of the first quadrant (high physical assets and high non-physical assets) (Figure 3). After the municipality spokesperson made sure that these three factors were realistic. Human capabilities refer to the knowledge and abilities of the people who handle a very complicated branding strategy such as this. The third factor is money that the municipality was willing to budget or to mobilize for this purpose. surveyors. In this case the mayor agreed to allocate public buildings or structures that might contribute to the success of this important branding strategy. the team decided to work according to the equation that city image is a function of three variables: human capabilities. In order to do so. In order to succeed in this branding vision. the team members believed that Tel Aviv could be like Berlin as a result of the branding process. The logic behind this equation is that creating a new city image can be achieved only if all three factors exist. The idea was to brand Tel Aviv as the 'Berlin of the Middle East'. The respondents were asked to relate their perceptions of Berlin. he and his team agreed that the new vision of branding Tel Aviv was and achievable. two focus groups were conducted with young inhabitants of Tel Aviv (20 participants) and two focus groups with young inhabitants of other cities near Tel Aviv (20 participants).Based on this phase. which refer to the physical assets that the city has or facilities that the municipality will invest in order to insure the success of the branding process.
The 'beautiful seashore' association should focus on making Tel Aviv beaches and its beautiful seashore a place that young people wish to visit and return many times. the municipality decided to bring attractions to the city that mean a lot to young people and that they perceive as essential. The professional team decided to take this sentence and project it to Tel Aviv. With regard to the 'center of the country' association that should focus on making the city appeal to young people in and outside the country. Insert table 2 about here Stage 4: The city image implementation The last stage of the branding process was the implementation stage in which the team had to find ways to translate the four most positive city image associations into action steps. since Tel Aviv lifestyle is very pluralistic (as opposed to Jerusalem. 'the best entertainment and enjoyment attractions'. 'an international city with infinite entertainment venues' and ' a city that is fun to return to at any time'. restaurants. cinemas and transportation were available almost 24 hours a day. such as opening new colleges for various subjects. the municipality had no problem implementing this and encouraging stores. Carried into practice. On the basis of this slogan the team decided to give new meaning to the four most positive city image associations: 'speed/tempo'. With regard to the 'beautiful seashore' association that should focus on making Tel Aviv beaches and its seashore a place that young 6 . After long deliberation. sport clubs. discotheques. The professional team decided to espouse this slogan for Tel Aviv's new image concept. 'perfect seashore' and 'cultural center' (Table 2).a city without a break'. cinemas. On the basis of its experience and knowledge the professional team decided that the 'speed/tempo' association that should focus on making the city one full of tempo and pleasure could be implemented if the municipality ensured that stores. entertainment. This sentence was Berlin – 'a city with no end'. shopping and business activities in the city in a way that will cause the city to be perceived as a leading one in the Middle East. for example). restaurants. The 'cultural center' association should focus on extending the culture. According to the new image the 'speed/tempo' association should focus on making Tel Aviv a city full of tempo and pleasure. 'the center of the country'. The 'center of the country' association should focus on making the city appeal to young people in and outside the country. the advertising experts came up with the slogan 'Tel Aviv . Respondents were then asked to find one sentence that best summarizes the image of Berlin.'ebullient city full of life'. music and dancing halls and other attractions. 'a city that comes alive in the evening and at night'. pubs. and transportation to work day and night.
the municipality decided not to charge entry fees unlike other municipalities nearby that charged to access their beaches. both among its own inhabitants and among out-of-town citizens. Mediterranean food festivals. entertainment. In the second question the respondents were asked to complete the sentence "Tel 7 . shopping and business activities in the city so that the city is perceived as a leading one in the Middle East. improved transportation to and from anywhere in the city and provided people with safe parking places nearby.people wish to visit. beach volleyball sport tournaments and many others. 200 students. the researchers conducted two studies. the municipality encouraged the best and newest cultural trends (new museums and up-to-date expositions and exhibitions). the municipality invested in improving seashore facilities (showers. The Implications In order to find out whether the branding process of Tel Aviv was successful. The idea was to take advantage of the powerful impact of word-of-mouth communication in promoting the city. the municipality invested a lot in maintaining the cleanliness of the beaches and making them the main attraction of the city. In order to promote these changes to the target markets. Apart from that. The results indicated that 144 respondents (72%) indicated Tel Aviv as the most branded city in Israel. In the first study. In the first question the respondents were asked to point out Israel's most branded cities (the question did not mention any city by name). With regard to the 'cultural center' association that should focus on extending the culture. On the tertiary level of communication the municipality organized or supported special events such as beer festivals. canteens. modern cinemas). rest rooms. the municipality decided to use two levels of communication: Secondary and tertiary communication. entertainment (new theaters. half male and half female. shopping trends (new stores and modern shopping centers) and business trends (boosting businesspeople to invest and to open new business and trade centers). During these events. In addition. This information was placed in the local and the national press. half who live in Tel Aviv and half who live outside the city but visit it often were asked to fill out a questionnaire with four questions. summer and beach events. lifeguard units). student events. the municipality encouraged young people to interact socially and update each other on the changes that were made in the city. 14 respondents (7%) indicated Holon as the most branded city in Israel and 10 respondents (5%) indicated Eilat as the most branded city in Israel. On the secondary level of communication the municipality delivered news about the changes to each of the four associations that were the foundations of the city image. 32 respondents (16%) indicated Jerusalem as the most branded city in Israel.
After defining these target markets it is necessary to find how these segments perceive the city in terms of city image dimensions. the results revealed that although Tel Aviv is the oldest city in Israel it has the 'youngest' image in the country. In contrast to the first survey conducted in 1994. Twenty-two people (11 per cent) did not mention these words and used words that relate to the sea and youngsters. Conclusions From the branding strategy of the Tel Aviv case study one can learn that even a city with an anemic image can be branded successfully and can be perceived as the most branded city of a country. In the fourth question the respondents who live in the city were asked to describe their level of satisfaction with living in the city from 1 (very satisfied) to 5 (unsatisfied at all). During the second stage it is essential to create the city branding vision. 27 per cent of the associations were negative and included associations such as 'a city that you can't afford to live in' (71 per cent). The purpose of this association question was to find out if the slogan of the Tel Aviv branding process had been assimilated in people's minds. It seems that four main stages should be included in a city branding strategy.". 'the culture center of the country' (19 per cent) and 'beautiful seashore' (13 per cent). In the third question. The first stage must identify the potential of city branding in order to focus on the right target market. In order to make this phase complete it should start with a SWOT analysis and then define the relevant target markets. 69 respondents were between 'satisfied' and 'very satisfied' levels. The results indicated that 178 people (89 per cent) completed this sentence accurately by saying "Tel Aviv is a city without a break". the respondents were asked to describe three words that relate to Tel Aviv. After finding the most important city image dimensions. This vision should be created according to the equation that city image is a function of 8 . The results showed that 52 respondents wish to live in the city. As opposed to these positive associations. Of the 100 respondents who live in the city. 'fun and enjoyment' (26 per cent).Aviv is a city …. The results of this question indicated that 73 per cent of the associations were positive and of these positive associations the most common ones were 'the center of the country' (42 per cent). The 100 respondents who live outside the city but visit it often were asked to describe their level of willingness to live in Tel Aviv from 1 (high willingness) to 5 (very low willingness). 'crowded city' (16 per cent) and 'elderly city' (13 per cent). 27 respondents were at the mediocre satisfaction level and only 4 respondents were unsatisfied. it is required to identify the current image of the city. 32 were not sure about it and 16 did not want to live in Tel Aviv. This case study shows that the process should be planned and must enlist the efforts of key stakeholders.
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Table 1: SWOT analysis of Tel Aviv Strengths In the middle of the county The most beautiful sea shore in the country Economic capital of Israel Cultural capital of Israel Mediterrane an weather Weaknesses Crowded Elderly inhabitants Expensive city Opportunities Threats Academic Shortage of capital of capital Israel resources Tourism Long term capital of project the region Cultural capital of the region Economic capital of the region Terrorism attacks Shortage of parking spaces 11 .
Figure 1: The identification of the most important city image dimensions Atmosphere and aesthetics Human assets Noise. overcrowding Artists and politicians Western. culture and entertainment facilities and services Limited and nonmodern 12 . modern Daily facilities City Image Assets that relate to location or history of the city and provide its reputation Urban services Tourism city Rich and close Leisure. density.
Figure 2: Identification associations of the most important city image Positive Beautiful seashore H Speed/ tempo The center of the country Bohemian center Cultural center M Business facilities Big city Elderly Crowded L Negative Non-physical assets Physical assets 13 .
Figure 3: The current and the future position of Tel Aviv Low Non-physical High assets Athens Jerusalem Paris Rome Prague London Cairo Tel Aviv (future) Berlin Izmir Amsterdam Monte-Carlo Las Vegas High Tel Aviv (current) Physical assets Low Adis Ababa Abuja 14 .
outside it discotheques.a city meaning without a break) Speed/tempo A city full of Ensuring that tempo and stores. pubs. clean beaches and lifeguard units along the beaches Cultural center A city that in Adopting the best terms of culture. sport the country and clubs. young person in colleges. transportation are available almost 24 hours a day Center of the A city that can New attractions country speak one clear for young people: language to any universities. cinemas. business is shopping and considered the business trends most leading city from all over the in the Middle East world 15 . shopping and entertainment. dancing clubs Beautiful seashore One of the best Making the attractions for seashore more any young people attractive to who live in or visit young people: the country without payment. with the required facilities. very convenient transportation. more and better parking lots. and the newest entertainment.Table 2: A new meaning to the positive city image associations Tel Aviv (old image Tel Aviv (new City image – anemic) image . pleasure restaurants. musical clubs. cultural.
Oxford: Butterworth Heinemann.Further Reading Beirman.) (2010) City Branding: Theory and Cases.Palgrave Hall. Security and Safety: From Theory to Practice. vol. (2010) Crisis events in tourism: subjects of crisis in . Journal of Vacation Marketing.M. London: .1 ?by the world media employ to enhance their images What specific market segments could a city like Tel Aviv target? . and Pizam. D. K. (2002) Marketing of tourism destinations during a prolonged crisis: Israel and the Middle East.) (2005) Tourism.2 ?Can any city appeal to all market segments 16 .tourism. (Eds. Discussion Questions What strategies can places which are often negatively portrayed . (Ed. 8 no. Current Issues in Tourism 13 (5): 401-417 Mansfeld. C. 2 167-176 Dinnie. Y. A.
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