Installation of the word Porto in Porto Portugal

Effective City Branding

City branding strategy can capture and promote the unique characteristics of cities. After understanding the all-encompassing effort it takes to plan a city rebranding, this course teaches how cities can succeed using strong place branding that attracts visitors, new citizens, new industries, and new businesses.

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Course Info

  • Duration 10 video lessons (57 Mins)
  • Published Published
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Browse Course Chapters

  • 1. Introduction (2 mins)
  • 2. What is Branding and Why Does it Matter? (9 mins)
  • 3. How Great Brands are Being Crafted Today (10 mins)
  • 4. City-Branding Overview: An All-Encompassing Effort to Reach the Pulse of a Place (3 mins)
  • 5. Let's not Mistake a Campaign for a Brand (3 mins)
  • 6. Like Building a City, Branding Requires a Strong Visual System (9 mins)
  • 7. Celebrating Community and Diversity (4 mins)
  • 8. Creating Global Clarity Through a Local Pull (5 mins)
  • 9. How City Branding Can Fail (5 mins)
  • 10. Key Takeaways (3 mins)

What You Will Learn

  • What branding is and why it matters in the context of city branding. 
  • How great brands are being crafted today and what branding techniques successful brands use to promote their identities.  
  • How to manage a city branding plan as an inclusive, transparent process.
  • The difference between a campaign and a brand and what a brand can offer. 
  • Key characteristics of a strong visual city branding system. 
  • How to create a city branding plan that celebrates community and diversity while creating global clarity through local pull. 
  • Common pitfalls and avoidable failures through city branding case studies.

Course Description

"Effective City Branding" discusses how an effective city branding plan captures and promotes the unique characteristics of cities. Course instructor and brand strategist Fabian Geyrhalter begins by defining place branding theory and exploring how city branding is being practiced successfully in the world today. After understanding the all-encompassing effort it takes to plan a city rebranding, "Effective City Branding" examines the importance of a smart visual system to serve as the foundation for a city branding strategy. 

Through multiple city branding case studies in cities like Oslo, New York, and Porto, this course follows city brand strategies from across the globe to show how successful city brands are being crafted, and how  less successful efforts went awry. At the end of this hands-on course, students and urban planners will understand what goes into a city branding campaign, what to look out for when collaborating with a creative consultancy, and how your city can succeed as not only a wonderful place to be, but as a strong brand that attracts visitors, new citizens, and new industries and businesses.

Join course instructor Fabian Geyrhalter in an exploration of how cities can utilize city branding strategies to successfully complete a city rebranding project. 

Learn these skills

  • Civic Engagement
  • Communications & Media
  • Urbanism


This course is approved for 1 AICP CM Credit.

Meet Your Instructor

Fabian Geyrhalter

Fabian Geyrhalter

Fabian Geyrhalter is a Brand Strategist, Creative Director, a prolific author and speaker on the subject of branding. Geyrhalter is the Founder and Principal of Los Angeles-based brand consultancy FINIEN.

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