Step 1: Why are you doing it?

Firstly, it is important to arrive at an understanding of why you are doing this work, and this needs to be shared and agreed at a senior level within the organisation.

Key stakeholders at this stage should include:

  • Council leader/elected Mayor
  • Chief executive
  • Cabinet members for place/regeneration/economic development
  • Lead officers for place/regeneration/economic development
  • LEP chair/members if appropriate

Working with these senior stakeholders you should establish a clear set of objectives for the place branding project. The work may be being driven by a particular event or regeneration project, in which case it will be easier to establish a clear timeline, or by a looser political imperative.

Keep your objectives clear so everyone understands what the project is for, but also keep them broad and strategic – do not get bogged down at this stage by tactics or evaluation measures.

Remember, that place branding takes a lot of time and investment. You are trying to create a project that will last for years, not a one-off campaign.