Successful Destination Branding?: A case study of DMOs in Brussels, Istanbul and Stuttgart
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 15 credits / 22,5 HE creditsStudent thesis
Tourism is an important source of economic growth for destinations, which is why the interest for destination branding has grown in recent years. Meanwhile, Destination Marketing Organisations (DMOs) often struggle to promote their destination successfully. For instance, many stakeholders influence the perception of a destination and therefore it is difficult to create a coherent image. Some destinations have a more successful destination branding, which not only depends on their marketing methods but also the pre-requisites of the city. Hence, destination branding is a complex process where there is no standard solution. Therefore, three different destinations are used as a basis for the thesis; Brussels, Istanbul and Stuttgart. What can be learned from the marketing methods in these destinations? The purpose of this thesis is to examine the current market position of Brussels, Istanbul and Stuttgart as tourist destinations and their marketing strategies and methods used to promote the destinations. We will identify general recommendations on how to improve the destination branding, and propose specific recommendations to selected DMOs in the destinations.
Through the use of specific descriptive criteria, such as unique selling points (USPs), image and marketing channels, as well as the conducting of interviews with employees in higher administrative positions within the selected DMOs, the thesis aims at providing the reader with a deeper knowledge in the field of destination branding. The Tourist Area Lifecycle Model was used to analyse the destinations to understand their situation today and future possibilities and challenges in marketing the cities as tourist destinations. Moreover, the concepts of comparative and competitive advantages and the integrative model by Ritchie and Croutch was used to discuss the competitiveness of the destinations. The research shows that DMOs face problems, such as the lack of a coherent image, common goals, the coordination of activities between DMOs in different levels and cooperation between different stakeholders. These are areas that need attention from the DMOs in order to achieve successful destination branding and are included in the conclusion, which helps DMOs to improve their marketing methods in order to achieve success in the promotion of their destination.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. , 78 p.
Brussels, destination branding, destination image, destination marketing, destination marketing organisation, DMO, Istanbul, Stuttgart
Economics and Business
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-56666ISRN: LIU-IEI-FIL-G—09/00472—SEOAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-56666DiVA: diva2:321132
Subject / course
Master Thesis in Business Administration (Magisteruppsats från Internationella ekonomprogrammet)
UppsokSocial and Behavioural Science, Law