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Poetics and Politics of Destination Branding: Denmark

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Most destination branding studies concentrate on how brand images and messages are formulated and presented. Their approaches stem mainly from general marketing, and deal narrowly with the poetics of branding. They leave many social and cultural issues embedded in the branding campaign unexamined. To overcome this shortcoming, this paper delves into the social complexity and multiplicity behind a branding campaign, that is, the politics of destination branding. Using a dialogic perspective, this paper identifies various functions served by a destination brand, the divergent agendas of different tourism stakeholders, and how different interest groups persuade, coerce and negotiate with each other so as to make the brand and the branding campaign serve their own individual needs. The case of Denmark was studied. And contextual differences between destination and corporate branding are eventually identified, stressing the need for critical reflection when applying conventional marketing ideas into destinations. Among others, the types of resources available to win over stakeholders towards the brand, local attitudes towards tourism and political support for the brand are factors that may determine the success of the destination branding campaign. This paper thus offers a more holistic and dynamic approach to destination branding research.
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Keywords: destination branding; destination identity; destination image; destination marketing; tourism in Denmark

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Copenhagen Business School Frederiksberg Denmark

Publication date: 2004-10-01

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