Branding destinations: symbolic and narrative representations and co-branding

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This article explores the presence of symbolic and narrative representations on destination websites, and the explicit presence of co-branding in the form of partner logos. In contrast to previous research that tends to focus on case-studies, this article adopts a survey approach. The study undertakes a content analysis of the websites of the eighty-two destinations identified on the VisitBritain website, including cities, regions, towns, villages, and islands. On these websites there is strong evidence of symbolic branding in the form of logos. However, less than half have a clear brand narrative in the form of a slogan. In addition, less than half exhibit some form of explicit co-branding, and where co-branding is evident it is often limited to development agencies of the city or county council. Furthermore, most villages, towns and small islands lack a brand narrative and do not engage in co-branding. Accordingly, whilst destinations do have a website and a logo there is a deficit with regard to brand narratives and co-branding.


  • Place brand web, Place branding, Place architecture, Co-branding, Britain, UK
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)328-338
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Brand Management
Issue number3
Early online date17 Dec 2019
Publication statusPublished - May 2020

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