The concept of place branding has been pervasively adopted by communities, cities, regions and nations (Gertner 2011); branding and brand management can be said to have been one of the leading areas of focus both for marketing academics and practitioners during the final two decades of the 20th century (Hankinson 2001). There is, however, an evident confusion in the use of the term (Kavaratzis 2004; 2005). Branding and marketing are managerial tools precisely defined in business management literature (Aaker 1991; Kotler et al. 1993). Both tools share a common philosophy: to connect certain positive values to a product in order to make it unique and, through this, to gain relevance in a competitive environment. As globalization has increased competition between cities, marketing and branding have broadened their scopes from the corporate world to urban management, expanding the design of public policies for sustainable urban growth (Kotler and Levy 1969). Initially, the application of branding and marketing to cities took the form of a simple promotion of the city but, very soon, more complex and sophisticated approaches were developed, including spatial-functional, organizational and financial measures (Ashworth and Voodg 1990).
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